Previously on Window Shopping with Car and Driver we looked at the fastest cars you can buy for less than $10,000. While we found some seriously powerful and quick cars, none of them have much a reputation for reliability. So, when a viewer suggested that we combine two challenges in one and wanted us to look at reliable cars that are also quick for less than $15,000, we thought, giving people what they want is YouTube gold.
Helping us mine the internet’s car listings this week is Window Shop rookie and C/D contributor, Ben Stewart. Stewart is a fan of muscle cars, burnouts, and horsepower, so his choice of a Dodge Charger Pursuit with the 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 doesn’t surprise any of us. His selection does draw a few questions about reliability, what the former city-owned vehicle might smell like, and we dive into the other things the Charger’s seller has for sale. Unsatisfied with the quickness and horsepower of his stock Charger, Stewart leaves enough money in the budget for a Procharger supercharger.
Valuing handling and driving fun, contributor Jonathon Ramsey picks a fifth-gen Volkswagen GTI. While we can’t fault the 10Best winning GTI’s dynamics, we do badger Ramsey about just how quick and reliable he expects a 13-year-old VW will be. Ramsey takes our barbs and then answers our complaints with a second, more powerful car in such a sad state that we really wish he hadn’t shown it to us.
Senior editor Joey Capparella and contributor John Pearley Huffman select two very different Japanese cars. Capparella goes for the surprisingly quick and largely forgotten Infiniti FX50 S SUV that could hit 60 in 5.0-5.1 seconds. Huffman uncovers a V-6-powered Accord with a manual transmission, a 10Best winner that he hopes will resonate with the group. Finally, deputy editor and host of this fine show, Tony Quiroga puts forth a Lexus IS300 that nails the challenge so thoroughly that everyone, and possibly you, are left completely satisfied and in awe.
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