7 Best Sports Cars Australia 2022

written by Cartopia |

7 Best Sports Cars Australia 2022
Some people just want a car to get them from A to B, but others want a car that delivers thrills on the open road. They want to experience the wind in their hair, as they drive down winding country roads.

The trouble is, sports cars are not the most practical of vehicles. This makes most of them unsuitable for anyone with family commitments. But if you are willing to make a few compromises, you can have the best of both worlds.

So here we are going to explore the 7 best “practical” sports cars on sale in Australia. These are cars that deliver thrills for less than $100,000. And some of them even have a back seat and a decent size boot too!

1. Nissan Z

The new Nissan Z replaces the long-lived 370Z. While the new car is based on the 370Z platform, it has an updated twin-turbo V6 engine that delivers 298kW/475Nm. This can be paired to either a six-speed manual or a nine-speed automatic gearbox.

The “Z” has been styled to look like the evocative Nissan 240Z which put Nissan on the map in the 1970s. This is retro styling for sure, but it certainly looks the part and will earn you admiring glances wherever you go.

Inside, Nissan has pulled out all the stops. The interior is well equipped, with passengers cosseted by heavily bolstered sports seats. There are no back seats though, not even token ones. But you do get a large boot big enough to take a weekend bag.

Pros

Retro styling

Free revving engine

Well equipped

Cons

Limited warranty

Expensive servicing

No back seats
 

2. Toyota GR86

The new Toyota GR86 is the second car to come out of Toyota’s collaboration with Subaru. The updated model is based on the same platform as the previous generation but comes with an updated naturally aspirated 2.4L 173kW/250Nm engine.

Outside the Toyota is an evolution of the previous design. That is no bad thing because the original GR86 was a great little car. The new model updates the look leaving it nicely proportioned and compact.

But it’s inside where the biggest changes have taken place. A new dashboard houses the updated infotainment system which includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. The rear seats remain, but they are still only suitable for children.

Pros

Great value for money

Two+Two seating

Good performance

Great sounding engine

Cons

Small token back seats

Not the most efficient car

Small boot

3. Ford Mustang

The American built Mustang is by far Australia’s best selling sports car. Annual sales are between 3000-4000, which is astonishing when you think its nearest rival the Mazda MX-5 doesn’t even break into four figures.

What makes the Mustang so popular? Well, the name is evocative for sure. But this is a surprisingly spacious four-seater coupe, with a big boot. And let's not forget the option of a 5.0L 339Kw/556Nm V8 engine up front.

On the road, it’s difficult to ignore the Mustang’s mass – this is not a lithe sports car in the Mazda MX-5 mould. But the independent rear suspension of the latest model makes for an entertaining drive. All of this makes it a surprisingly practical coupe that you can use as a daily driver.

Pros

Evocative styling

Lots of kit for the money

Great performance

V8 sounds great

Cons

Feels long geared

Not very fuel-efficient

Lacks passion
 

4. Mazda MX-5

The Mazda MX-5 is a modern-day icon. Launched in 1990, the little Miata quickly earned a reputation for being a fun and affordable sports car. The latest model sticks to the same trusted formula with its lightweight chassis and 2.0L 97kW/152Nm 4-cylinder engine.

On the road, the MX-5 remains one of the best handling cars money can buy. But the cramped cockpit and small boot mean it’s not the most practical vehicle, and it’s lacking some of the latest safety technology.

But you don’t buy an MX-5 for practicality. When it comes to smiles per mile, nothing beats the MX-5. So if you are looking for a true wind in your hair sports car that won’t break the bank, the Mazda MX-5 is the way to go.

Pros

Value for money

Slick manual gearbox

Great handling

Cons

Not the most practical

The engine is a bit noisy
 

5. Subaru BRZ

The Subaru BRZ is the twin of the Toyota GR86 mentioned above. Like the Toyota, the BRZ received an update in 2022, which includes a new curvy body and a much-improved interior.

The car is powered by an updated version of Subaru’s 2.4L 174kW/250Nm flat-four engine. This is a great engine with lots of power and torque for its size. This is connected to a new six-speed manual gearbox which is leagues ahead of the old one.

In terms of equipment, the Subaru comes with all the latest safety tech. And yes, you get a small but functional pair of back seats. All things considered, this is a great allrounder that can play sports car at the weekend and family runabout during the week.

Pros

Cute styling

Lots of safety tech

Great value

Cons

Noisey tyres

Long waiting list

Limited options

6. Alpine A110S

The Alpine A110S launched in 2019 to great acclaim from the world's motoring press. The car features a mid-mounted four-cylinder 185kW/350Nm engine. This sends drive to the rear wheels through a seven-speed DCT gearbox.

The engine is not especially powerful, many hot hatches have similar numbers. But this car is really about handling. The A110 is easy to drive quickly, making average drivers feel like superheroes. The steering is sharp, the ride composed and the gear change slick.

However, we cheated a little bit, because prices for the A110S start at $101,000. And there’s a long waiting list, so don’t expect to find a bargain second-hand. But if you’re looking for something special, this car ticks all the boxes.

Pros

Great balance and handling

Sprightly engine

Slick gearbox

Retro styling

Cons

Expensive

Outdated infotainment system

Bucket seats are not that comfortable

7. Toyota Supra

The 2021 Toyota Supra is the latest in a long line of coupes to wear the Supra badge. But this is unlike any that has gone before. Because underneath, it’s a BMW, spawned from a platform sharing agreement with the Bavarian giant.

Look hard and you can see the BMW Z4 lurking underneath. But despite its German underpinnings, the Supra has an unmistakable Japanese feel. The fighter-jet design language gives the car a unique silhouette and it feels as solidly put together as a Camry.

But this car is all about driving. Take the Supra out on the open road and you can’t help but be impressed. The chassis is beautifully balanced and the steering is perfectly weighted. As a package, it’s not perfect, but as a driver's car, it doesn't get much better.

Pros

Well sorted chassis

Five-year warranty

Capped service pricing

Cons

Primitive Infotainment system

Limited interior storage

No ANCAP safety rating

Conclusion

Now is a great time to be a car enthusiast in Australia. Rarely has there been this much choice in the sports car market. And you don’t have to spend a fortune to park one of these on your driveway as a Subaru BRZ can be yours for less than $40,000.

But can you use any of them as your daily driver? Well yes, if the kids are still young, the Ford Mustang, Subaru BRZ and Toyota GR86 all have usable back seats, so you can take the kids to school during the week and enjoy the open road at the weekend.