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9 Best Affordable Sports Cars | CarMax

Sports cars are coveted by many, but they have long been considered a luxury that can be only owned by a few. Today, there are plenty of affordable sports cars to choose from. And with a wide variety of models with different specs, powertrain options, and designs, you can choose a sports car that will suit your lifestyle.

To help you on your search, we've compiled a list of the 9 best affordable sports cars for 2020 shoppers, based on CarMax sales data and pricing data from November 1, 2019, through April 30, 2020. Each of these vehicles has an average CarMax price of less than $30,000. Please be aware that certain model years and upper trim configurations could bring the prices of some of these vehicles over the average price.1

  1. BMW Z4
  2. Subaru BRZ
  3. Nissan 370Z
  4. Mazda MX-5 Miata
  5. Volkswagen GTI
  6. Subaru WRX
  7. Mini Cooper Countryman
  8. Chevrolet Camaro
  9. Ford Mustang

Best Affordable Sports Cars: BMW M4 | CarMax

The BMW Z4 was out of production in 2017 and 2018, and was reintroduced in 2019, marking the start of its second generation. The 2019 model year is redesigned, with a soft-top instead of a retractable hardtop as one of the most notable changes. It comes in one trim, the sDrive30i, powered by a 2.0L four-cylinder engine generating 255 horsepower, paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Some highlights of the 2019 BMW Z4 include:

  • BMW iDrive® infotainment system with a 10.2-inch touchscreen
  • Driver and passenger memory seat settings
  • Automatic temperature control
  • Heated sport steering wheel

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Subaru BRZ | CarMax

A well-equipped and affordable sports car, the Subaru BRZ is known for smooth and dynamic handling that's suited for speed. In addition to the comfortable interior, the BRZ boasts a wide variety of engine options and a range of available features. 2017-2019 models all come standard with a 2.0L four-cylinder boxer engine delivering 205 horsepower. All 2017-2019 Subaru BRZ models come standard with many desirable features, including:

  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel
  • Bluetooth® connectivity
  • Starlink® infotainment system with a 6.2-inch touchscreen
  • Smartphone integration
  • Limited-slip rear differential

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Nissan 370Z | CarMax

Now in its sixth generation, which started with the 2009 model year, the Nissan 370Z is an affordable sports car that offers a thrilling ride. The base trims of model years 2017-2019 are powered by a V6 engine that generates 332 horsepower. Model years 2017-2019 come in four trims and are available in Coupe, Roadster, and Performance variations. Standard features on the base trim include:

  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Automatic climate control
  • LED daytime running lights
  • Keyless ignition
  • HID headlights

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Mazda MX-4 Miata | CarMax

The Maxda MX-5 Miata is an easily recognizable sports car. It's a stylish two-seater that's fun to drive, with exciting features designed to enhance performance and convenience. Model years 2017-2019 are part of the fourth generation Mazda MX-5 Miata that was introduced in 2016. It's available in three trim configurations: Sport, Club, and Grand Touring. The base Mazda MX-5 Miata for 2017 and 2018 is powered by a 2.0L four-cylinder engine delivering 155 horsepower, while the 2019 model employs the same engine and generates an additional 26 hp. Standard features for 2017-2019 models include:

  • Six-speaker audio system
  • 16-inch alloy wheels
  • Seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system
  • Keyless entry
  • Cruise control

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Volkswagen GTI | CarMax

If you're looking for a larger cabin and more storage room, the Volkswagen GTI is an excellent choice. This stylish hatchback combines the performance typical of a sports car with the spaciousness and convenience of a compact car. Model years 2017 and 2018 come standard with a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder engine, enough for 220 horsepower, while the 2019 model is powered by the same engine and 10 extra hp. Notable standard features for 2017-2019 model years include:

  • Infotainment system with a 6.5-inch touchscreen
  • Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration
  • Automatic post-collision braking system
  • Heated front seats
  • Rain-sensing windshield wipers

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Subaru WRX | CarMax

The Subaru WRX is an affordable compact car with sports car performance. It's now in its fifth generation, which started in 2016. The Subaru WRX makes a great city car for your daily commute, as well as a performance-oriented car for a thrilling ride on the open road. Model years 2017-2019 come standard with all-wheel drive and are powered by a 268-horsepower turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder engine. Standard features include:

  • Starlink® infotainment system with a 6.2-inch touchscreen
  • Automatic temperature control
  • Cruise control with steering wheel controls
  • Leather steering wheel
  • 17-inch alloy wheels

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Mini Cooper Countryman | CarMax

This subcompact crossover SUV is known for its stylish exterior and upscale cabin, with power that can offer an exciting riding experience. Model years 2017-2019 belong to the second-generation Mini Cooper Countryman, which began in 2017, with base models powered by a turbocharged three-cylinder engine generating 134 horsepower. This dynamic and fun-to-drive affordable sports car comes with the following standard features:

  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Rearview camera
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Satellite radio

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Chevrolet Camaro | CarMax

The iconic Chevrolet Camaro is a thrilling, high-performance vehicle in every sense of the term. The popular, affordable sports car is now in its sixth generation, which began with the 2016 model year. A powerful V6 engine generating 323 horsepower is standard on base trims of 2017-2019 models, with other standard features such as:

  • Teen Driver monitoring system
  • Automatic climate control
  • MyLink® infotainment system with a seven-inch touchscreen
  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility

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Best Affordable Sports Cars: Ford Mustang | CarMax

At the top of our list, the Ford Mustang boasts strong performance, responsive handling, and lively acceleration. Plus, its attractive styling is bound to turn heads. Model years 2017-2019 come standard with a 2.3L turbocharged four-cylinder EcoBoost engine delivering 310 horsepower. Other standard features include:

  • Independent rear multi-link suspension
  • Rear 50-50 bench seat
  • Smartphone integration
  • SYNC® Services access
  • 17-inch alloy wheels

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Be it a classic two-seater or a roomy hatchback with a powerful engine, there are many affordable sports cars to choose from. Use this list to find the right ride for your lifestyle.

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1Based on prices on carmax.com from November 1, 2019 through April 30, 2020. Actual prices may vary based on your selected model year, features, and trim packages. Prices do not include taxes, tags, titles, and any applicable fees.
Unless otherwise noted, information related to these featured vehicles comes from third-party sources, including manufacturer information. Product and company names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of third-party entities. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by these entities.