High-performance vehicles for low budgets

If you are in the market for a used car but you don’t want to settle for an economy car, there are a few high-performance options available for drivers who are shopping with an auto loan. Popular Mechanics (PM) recently compiled a list of fun used vehicles that won’t break the bank. The publication points out that you may have to accept a few mechanical issues, but that could be a small price to pay to get the ride you really want.

The 2002 Ford F-150 SVT Lightning could be a good choice for a driver who loves power, as PM reports that the truck’s 5.4-liter V8 engine churns out an impressive 380 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque. However, a few recalls were made on the truck for minor engine flaws, so drivers should take caution if they decide to purchase this vehicle, which can typically be found for around $9,000, according to Edmunds.com.

If you’d prefer a performance coupe, then look no further than the 2005 Acura RSX Type-S. The car’s i-VTEC engine only delivers about 210 hp. This makes the Acura light and quick – enough to make driving fun, but not enough to win a drag race. The trouble with these cars, according to Popular Mechanics, is that it is pretty likely that previous owners have driven them hard and customized them. Look out for modifications that could lead to bent frames and cracked cylinder heads. If you come across an RSX in good condition, chances are that it will cost under $17,000 according to Kelley Blue Book.

There weren’t many made, so its tough to find one for sale, but the 2008-09 Chevrolet Cobalt SS Turbo makes for a good ride. It packs a punch with 260 horsepower, which is rather impressive for a 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine. The downfalls of this car are the noisy five-speed and the design that makes it feel like a knock-off Cruze. The Cruze was Chevy’s successful attempt to reinvent the Cobalt, according to PM, but if you are willing to sacrifice design quality for power, and you can track down a used Cobalt for sale, you’re looking at roughly a $16,000 price tag for one that’s in excellent condition.

The important thing to note is that there are options for people shopping with bad credit car loans. This means that you can find the car you really want, or at least something that comes close for your price range.