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Old 01-09-2007, 09:51 AM   #11
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Saturn SC2 can be had very cheap and easy to maintain. they now have a fair amount of aftermarket support and parts are the same on all cars from 90-2003 so many junkyards will have parts.

That is your cheapest route in my opinion. They are not bad little cars and you cannot buy a more american car.
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Old 01-09-2007, 09:56 AM   #12
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Saturn SC isnt a bad idea, especially if you won't need to endure the interior for long periods of time . Accessible power band and pretty light weight. As long as we're talking cheap, dont forget a first gen Neon. Up till 1999 they were light, around 2300lbs. If you need to go with an automatic, get the SOHC, DOHC autos were limited before they ended up making any more power. Major downsides to the Neon, base suspension had no RSB, so its understeery, and the auto tranny was a 3spd, so its a slow revver. Upsides is after the headgasket was replaced, they're reliable and you can get one for $500.

EDIT: If you could convince her to drive the MTX, the first gen ACR was one of the best low cost track cars of its day. An Edmunds review called it "The most fun you can have for $16,000, short of a used Miata." Granted thats edmunds, but still. OEM suspension was Koni adjustable struts, higher rate springs and stiffer sway bars on 15" wheels, came without radios or A/C as I recall. Tough to find them though.
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:07 AM   #13
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miata or mini
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:10 AM   #14
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miatas are good but they dont look as good IMHO

a cheaper choice would be to find an old CRX and fit it up there hard to beat and there so light
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:14 AM   #15
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^ Did all CRX's come with manual steering? My arms would be tired after one run in my buddy's CRX SI.

Styling is subjective, I'm not a huge fan of the NA Miata's nose, but the headroom (all 800 million miles of it) overrules that in my mind.
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Old 01-09-2007, 02:25 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dubalicious View Post
So my question is simple, what is a fairly good automatic autocross car for a novice? We would want somthing used, easy to drive and reliable, it will be stock for awhile, except for some better tires.
I am leaning towards a Prelude but I don't know how good they are as an autocross car, I just know she likes the way they look.

Thanks for any help you can give us.
First off I want to admit to a slight bias: I've been autocrossing a Mazda Miata for ten years (I've been to Nationals three times).

A Miata would make a great car for a begining autocrosser but no little engined car is going to do well with an automatic transmission. If she just wants to get out there and isn't going to get discouraged when she gets clobbered by others in her class who are driving standard transmission cars then it really won't matter what she is in. Heck, if she wants a Prelude, get her a Prelude.

If she does get into autocross with an automatic teach her to left foot brake. If she later learns to drive a car with a clutch, it (left foot braking) will be a skill she will already have and will make her faster right off the bat.

Good luck.
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:33 PM   #17
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I'd go with a miata.
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Old 01-30-2007, 03:00 PM   #18
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There are automatic miatas, and I couldn't agree more. I own a miata ( mine is a stick ) and it a great car for the money, what you get is well worth it. I own a 1990 that I paid 1500 for. I put another 600-700 in it ( tires, shocks, a few other bits ) and have a car thats a blast to drive. The automatic will slow it down, but she can still go have a good time. OR, just consider this...she can learn to drive stick....approach the idea of a 5 speed miata for her to learn stick on...Just see what she thinks.
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Old 01-30-2007, 04:37 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by isaac_in_tx View Post
go with a miata
+ whatever it is by now , or get her up to speed on shifting the Focus.
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Old 02-06-2007, 01:24 AM   #20
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F it, get a six speed Honda S2000. Best Auto-X car ever. Awesome gearbox!!!!! !1 ! AHHHHHHHHHH!!!


ok, ok, I got ahead of myself. Get a saturn if you're going Automatic Tranny.
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