Some cars are like the Mick Jaggers and Bonos of the automotive world: loved by the masses from the moment they’re unveiled, never going out of style, and refusing to disappear. Other cars are more like Blind Melon — just as great, but woefully underappreciated in their heyday, fading all too soon from our collective memory.
The good news is that most of these cars still have passionate fanbases keeping the dream alive. They’re all reasonably affordable — or, like a Blind Melon CD, absurdly cheap. The only catch? Putting in the effort to find one. But they’re out there.
1. Volkswagen Corrado
Price: $5,000 – $8,000
The Corrado was conceived as a low-cost alternative to the Porsche 944 (since VW and Porsche are part of the same company), and if you find one today with an SLC trim, it has 180hp under the hood. That might not sound like all that much nowadays, but given the car’s weight — around 2,800lb — it’s more than enough power to run afoul of the law.
2. Datsun 510
Price: $8,000 – $12,000
The 510 never dropped off the map for serious car enthusiasts, but for everyone else it faded quietly out of the limelight. That’s a shame, since in the late 1960s it was competing with the likes of BMW on the front lines of the then-new sports sedan category. Early in his career, Paul Newman raced one as part of a very long relationship with the brand, and today, they still make for pretty fantastic performance cars.