Over the last few years, $100,000 has become an increasingly interesting price point. Many great cars have been priced beyond the six-figure mark, but there's still a large variety of cars of all shapes, sizes, and specialties that come in below six figures. These are the ones to buy, according to you.
Cars like the M3 and M5 are more powerful than the M2, but boy is this little coupe fun to drive. And while you might not see it on the spec sheet, the M2 is also a lot of car for your money. It offers the kind of balance and feedback that makes you want to drive it harder, and the harder you drive it, the more rewarding it is. While you can get other M cars for less than $100,000, the M2 is the one you're going to want if you're an enthusiast.
Combining the wide body and upgraded suspension of the Z06 with the amazing 460-hp naturally aspirated V8 of the Stingray makes one incredible Corvette. The Grand Sport offers huge amounts of speed, handling, and comfort for a relative bargain price. We suggest you option the $7995 Z07 performance package that brings Brembo carbon ceramic brakes and sticky Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires to the party.
We're huge fans of the Shelby GT350R. We're not going to try to hide that. In fact, we named it our Performance Car of the Year when new. Its 5.2-liter V8 makes 526 horsepower, it sounds absolutely evil, and it feels light on its feet. And for less than $66,000, the value it offers for your money is absolutely incredible.
Yes, the Porsche Cayman has ditched its sonorous naturally aspirated flat-six for a turbocharged flat-four. That's a bit of a shame, but that four-cylinder is still mounted in one of the finest chassis on the market. For the money, arguably no car handles as sharply as a Cayman. And hey, the 2.5-liter in the 718 Cayman S still offers a great balance of power and torque.
The new supercharged 650-horsepower ZL1 1LE is one of the cheaper cars on this list, yet it offers arguably the most performance. With wildly advanced suspension and functional aerodynamics, it's one serious track machine.
Against all odds, Alfa Romeo made an absolutely phenomenal sports sedan with the Giulia Quadrifoglio. It has an incredible drivetrain package in its 505-hp V6 and paddle-shift automatic, and some of the sharpest handling abilities of any car at any price. While the jury is still out on build quality and reliability, the Giulia Quadrifoglio counters by offering more engagement than any of its rivals. It even makes a lot of true sports cars feel dull.
With the CLA now the entry-level car in Mercedes' lineup, the C-Class was free to move upmarket. The result is a car that feels more like a smaller S-Class than anything else. And the best C-Class you can buy is the hilariously fast C63 S Coupe. It makes 503 horsepower out of its 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8, which is enough to hit 60 mph in less than four seconds. The coupe also gets a revised rear suspension over the sedan, and a set of muscular fender flares. The C63 sedan is more practical, but really, you want the coupe.
We're sorry to report that you can't get a V8-powered F-Type for less than $100,000, but the 380-hp R Dynamic (formerly the F-Type S) will go a long way towards easing your pain. It's still one of the best-looking cars for sale today, it sounds incredible, and it also offers two things you can't get with the F-Type R—rear-wheel drive and a manual transmission. As far as consolation prizes go, the Jaguar F-Type R Dynamic is pretty hard to beat.
Unless you need the space of the full-size Range Rover, the luxury SUV to get is the Range Rover Sport. It serves up everything the Range Rover offers, but in a smaller package. And since the Sport also costs less, you can get the V8-powered Sport Supercharged and still be safely under $100,000. The 510 horsepower supercharged V8 makes for one quick SUV, and it sounds absolutely incredible. Does anyone need a 510-horsepower luxury SUV? No. But we sure do want one
With only 467 horsepower, the Lexus GS F is outmatched by the BMW M5, Cadillac CTS-V, and Mercedes-AMG E63. In reality, this is much more like the beloved E39 M5 than most enthusiasts realize. The way the GS F's naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V8 sings all the way to its 7500-rpm redline is worth the price of admission alone, but this car offers sharp handling too. This is a criminally overlooked car.
For a car no one asked for, the Cadillac CTS-V sure has gotten pretty darn good. In fact, three generations in, it's a world-class super sedan. The 640-horsepower V8 under the hood will shoot the CTS-V to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. And thanks to the solid chassis, magnetic suspension, and abundance of grip, the CTS-V is more capable in the curves than any 4000-lb car has a right to be.
Going through Superformance, you can now get a fully wired Caterham 620R rolling chassis for $72,900. Keep in mind, however, that since that price is sans engine, you're looking at a total of about $90,000 after purchase and installation of the 310-hp supercharged Ford 2.0-liter. That might sound pricey for a minimalist car, but a sub-3-second 0-60 mph time will ensure you'll be a blip on the horizon ahead of cars costing three to four times more. Who needs creature comforts when you have this kind of power-to-weight ratio?
As performance cars become heavier and more complicated, the Lotus Evora 400 keeps things refreshingly simple. This is one of the most honest sports cars on sale today. It's got the amazing handling finesse you expect from Lotus, with real grunt from its 400-hp supercharged V6. If you think the 911 is too big and heavy, the Evora 400 is your car.
The cost of a new Porsche 911 continues to creep upwards, but thankfully, you can still get a base-model 911 Carrera for less than $100,000. But don't let the fact it's a base model fool you. You're still getting a serious sports car. Its 370-horsepower engine is enough to hit 60 mph in as little as 4.0 seconds. And while Porsche's decision to use turbochargers on the latest generation of engines is controversial, the resulting fuel economy is excellent. A PDK-equipped 911 Carrera is rated at 30 mpg highway.
The LC500 is arguably one of the most beautiful cars on sale right now. Match that with a lovely naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V8 and a great chassis setup, and you get a fantastic grand touring experience fit for a halo car.
The Tesla Model S is a luxurious, American-built car that just happens to be powered by electricity. The P100D is the one you want if you want the quickest Model S available, but if you can't spend more than $100,000, you'll have to make do with the non-P 100D. Don't worry, though. The Model S 90D is still plenty quick. It can hit 60 mph in 4.2 seconds.
As luxury cars go, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class has always been among the best, and the newest S560 is no exception. It mates all of Mercedes-Benz's best technology with subtle, refined styling, a beautiful interior, and a h ride. If you want your car to coddle you, this is your best choice.
Thanks to a stripped down "Pure" trim introduced for the 2018 model year, the GT-R just barely squeezes under the $100,000 mark. But don't worry, that bulletproof 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6, AWD, 20-inch wheels, and Brembo brakes still come standard.