V8 monsters & V10 sleepers: Eight ways to get 300kW for $30,000
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The world may be swaying to hybrids and EVs these days, but the demand for powerful earth-shaking twin-turbo sixes and V8s is still strong today. And, there are plenty of options out there for people wanting to delve into the genre on the relative cheap.
Here, we've got eight of the best tyre-shredding noise-producers listed for sale on Driven — all of them (well, almost all of them) priced under $30,000.
For many the first port of call for cheap power are cars powered by a V8 and, given that New Zealand is generally starved of American muscle cars, the next best thing are AMG's beastly offerings.
Here, that generally means getting an AMG C63. And if you're after extra nerd points a station wagon like this one is a must.
Listed in Auckland, its 6.2-litre V8 has just 84,500km on the odometer, and is furnished with all the luxury trimmings you'd expect like leather, heated seats, satnav, self parking, and more. Click here to check it out.
It's only fair that if we reference the C63 that a BMW M3 made an appearance, too.
There once was a time where $30,000 was enough to net a solid E46 M3. But values on the car that plenty of M-enthusiasts consider to be the best performance BMW of all time have since skyrocketed, leaving the E92 as the most accessible entry point outside of the E36.
The 4.0-litre S65 V8 makes peak power at a sweet high-revving 8,300rpm, and it's mated to arguably the best chassis in class from the period.
Prices on E92s tends to sit closer to $40,000, but this Auckland model — thanks namely to its kilometres — instead sits at $27,980. Click here to check it out.
When it first debuted, the Lexus ISF fell flat with plenty of critics for not really holding a performance candle to the likes of the above Bimmers and Benzes.
But time has been kind to the ISF, as these days it's seen as the most mature buy of the bunch. That naturally aspirated 5.0-litre V8 is a sweetheart, and continues to be held in high regard for being bulletproof, and versions of it are still used today in cars like the GSF.
Shop around and you'll find a high-kilometre ISF for less than $30,000. But anything low kilometres — like this 73,300km burgundy number listed in Auckland — will require a couple more bob. Click here to check it out.
For the pie and kangaroo-loving buyer, there's always a slew of Holden and Ford V8s on tap. It's a good time to buy one, too, given that values are at worst sitting flat following the death of Aussie car production.
For $30,000, your best bet is most likely a VZ-generation HSV Clubsport like this sinister black $24,975 example with relatively low kilometres in Auckland.
The VZ Clubsport comes equipped with GM's 6.0-litre LS2 V8. This is the biggest feather in the VZ's cap when compared to the similar-but-older VY Clubsport. Click here to check it out.
Now for something completely different.
If European performance is your flavour but you're needing something to haul the kids, the dog, the mountain bike, the kitchen sink, and the chequebook for service bills, then a Porsche Cayenne could be the answer.
The Cayenne has always been quite a sporting thing to drive relative to the rest of the European hot SUV segment, and the Turbo adds a big dollop of extra power (over 400kW, to be exact) to the 4.8-litre V8. There are several facelift examples underneath $30,000 — like this one — but it's probably worth spending an extra few grand on this sharp black number with its low 63,999km count. Click here to check it out.
At the opposite end of the spectrum to the luxurious Cayenne Turbo is this big American tank.
There aren't many Chysler 300Cs in New Zealand, and even fewer of them are the go-faster SRT8 — making this $29,995 Wellington-based example one of the most unique ways to burn 30 grand. The 6.1-litre Hemi V8 is stuff of legend, making 317kW and 569Nm — enough to hit 100km/h in about five seconds.
It isn't necessarily the most dynamically advanced sports sedan out there (its built on an antique Mercedes-Benz E-Class platform), but it is a rear-wheel drive Hemi and that's more than enough to get it onto this list. Click here to check it out.
Many of these cars are what conservative buyers would label … err … risky investments. But none is more risky than this thing.
The E60 BMW M5 is a truly incredible sports sedan — perhaps one of the best ever. Its 5.0-litre V10 makes 373kW and, maybe more to the point, an exceptional noise. A corking chassis makes it a more than worthy follow-up to the hallowed E39.
But, while these are excellent attributes, the E60 M5 also has a reputation for being one of the least reliable cars you can buy second hand. What makes this particular recent Japanese import a compelling option is the oddly low 50,000 kilometre count. Click here to check it out.
Speaking of big luxo barges with V10s, there's also the Audi S6 to consider.
It won't be as capable as the aforementioned M5, but it will be smoother riding, more luxurious, and packs a still highly respectable 320kW from its 5.2-litre. Standard features include Bose audio, heated leather seats, reverse camera, and Quattro all-wheel drive.
This low-kms Auckland example is even a decent chunk under budget, at $24,980. Click here to check it out.