I remember the old era well. I remember when things were different, a time when the concept of having fun while driving was reserved for people with super-expensive cars or for mechanically inclined tuners who liked to turn econoboxes into home-built racers.
The cars have been an enormous success, which means just one thing:
There will be imitators.
Frankly, a used BRZ or FR-S is an incredible buy. The cars grab glances anywhere they go, are well-priced and provide a kind of driving exhilaration previously unavailable in a sub-$30,000 car. If a used car isn’t on your list, there are two more new ones coming that could threaten to dismantle the Toyota/Subaru monopoly on practical fun. Design, though, makes the Toyota and Subaru look like pretty solid choices.
Nissan wants to get back into the sporty game and will very likely produce the IDx concept, a car that I haven’t been a fan of since its debut. I say it looks like a squashed Charger, while Nissan says,
The front/rear fenders and side structure, such as the door panels, seem to sandwich the cabin to focus attention on the center of the vehicle.
Who wants attention on the center of the vehicle? Regardless, prepare yourself to see this little abnormality on a street near you.
Not content to sit and watch its competition grab all the customers, even Kia has a concept that will probably see production. While not in the same class of ugly as the Nissan, the Kia GT4 Stinger could steal some of those BRZ/FR-S drivers who find themselves wishing for more power. Autoblog says,
It’s a 2+2, rear-drive coupe with a detuned version of the 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder used in the Kia Optima GTS racer from the Pirelli World Challenge. The concept’s engine is said to be good for a healthy 315 horsepower.
After a wait that seemed like forever, a new era of driving passion has certainly arrived.
What’s your favorite design, the BRZ/FR-S, the Nissan IDx or the Kia GT4 Stinger?