If you're patient for a minute you can find pretty much whatever you want. zx3, zx5, sedan, wagon, lowered, stock, tinted. For a 00-04 your budget is very realistic.
I really like the Salem one.
Sure an SVT or ST would be nice but better to find a car you like but can afford than buy something you can't and add stress to the situation. Only you know what you can spend.
And if you do buy stock this is the right community for getting help with mods.