If you’re in the market for the best new sports cars under $30,000, you’ve come to the right spot. Of course, you can always go up to higher horsepower in some of the models, or be prepared to lay more money on the table for the true thoroughbreds (like Chevrolet Corvette, for example). But if your wallet dictates a little more economy, you can still get a real thrill out of these best new sports cars under $30,000.

  • 2010 Volkswagen CCRoad & Track, in “Sexiest Cars Under $35,000”, highlights the 2010 Volkswagen CC, saying, “With the CC, VW has rediscovered that it can blend fantastic styling with a reasonable price-tag. The CC looks like a full-fledged luxury sedan but, unlike the overwrought Phaeton, it isn’t priced like one.” Manufacturer’s suggested retail prices (MSRPs) begin at $27,550 and climb to $40,420 for the VR6 4Motion with all-wheel drive (AWD). VW calls CC a “four-door coupe,” but we call it a good reason to get out and drive a sporty new car.
  • 2010 Chevrolet Camaro Kelley Blue Book raves – as do almost all automotive reviewers – about the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro: “Whether in V8 trim or powered by the also-available V6, the 2010 Camaro is not just a car to be respected; it’s a car to be celebrated…The 426-horsepower SS model certainly grabs the headlines, but the 304-horsepower V6-equipped LT offers significantly more performance than you might expect, while turning in laudable fuel efficiency.” After a lengthy hiatus, the return of the Chevy pony car is good news to savvy consumers looking for a sports car bargain. Check out the reasonable MSRPs beginning at $22,680 (V6 LS) to $33,295 (V8 2SS).
  • 2010 Ford Mustang GT What’s a list of best new sports cars under $30K without the Ford Mustangspecifically the GT model? The longest continually produced muscle car built in America, the Ford Mustang, says Edmunds “continues to be one of the best-bang-for-your-buck performance buys…It is true that muscle car competitors from Chevy and Dodge mean that the Mustang isn’t the only pony in town. If history proves anything, though, no competition will be able to defeat the original muscle car in the hearts and minds of the American car buyer.” Mustang MSRPs range from $21,395 (V6 coupe) to $36,395 (V8-powered GT Premium convertible).
  • 2010 Dodge ChallengerAvailable in SE, R/T, and, alas, out-of-price-range SRT8, the 2010 Dodge Challenger offers some serious performance to compete with the likes of other best new sports cars under $30,000. MSRPs range from $23,245 (SE) to $30,860 for the R/T. Road & Track comments: “The Challenger just makes you feel good, even if the ride and handling is softer than the sportier setups in the Camaro or Mustang…The R/T has all of the charisma – and most of the performance – of the range-topping [SRT8] model.”
  • 2010 Mazda MX-5 MiataWith MSRPs ranging from $22,810 to $29,350, the 2010 Mazda MX-5 Miata proves there’s a lot of economical zip in this pocket rocket – certainly enough to get you off the couch and out for a test drive. Consumer Guide gives the 2010 Mazda MX-5 Miata a Best Buy accolade, remarking: “This perennial Best Buy delivers as much driving enjoyment – if not outright power – as two-seat sports cars costing thousands more. The MX-5 Miata combines open-air driving fun with surprising practicality, including a remarkably well-engineered retractable hard top.”

Maybe we’ve just scratched the surface of the best new sports cars under $30K. Then again, maybe not. But there are a few more to consider, including the 2010 Hyundai Genesis coupe and sedan (yes, they are sporty), the Volkswagen GTI, and the Kia Forte Koup. Oh, and a few thousand over the price cap is another sports car to consider (if you can find the money): the 2010 Nissan 370Z.

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