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Discussion Starter #1
So I have a Nissan Sentra SE R Spec V and I've been racing a Lotus Elise for 2 years. In a few months, I'm going to be going to college, and that's where the problem begins. I want to continue racing, but at the same time I'm not exactly comfortable with taking the Lotus to college with me, but I know I'm not going to be taking two cars. So, now I'm looking for a car that I can use to race, but still be comfortable with using as a daily driver.

What type of car do you all think would be a good alternative for the Elise and Sentra? Or, more generally, what do you think would be a good performance car that could be used for both daily driving and racing?

P.S. I did a quick search and didn't come up with anything. Also, I think this could lead to an interesting thread if people voice their opinions.
 

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So I have a Nissan Sentra SE R Spec V and I've been racing a Lotus Elise for 2 years. In a few months, I'm going to be going to college, and that's where the problem begins. I want to continue racing, but at the same time I'm not exactly comfortable with taking the Lotus to college with me, but I know I'm not going to be taking two cars. So, now I'm looking for a car that I can use to race, but still be comfortable with using as a daily driver.

What type of car do you all think would be a good alternative for the Elise and Sentra?

P.S. I did a quick search and didn't come up with anything. Also, I think this could lead to an interesting thread if people voice their opinions.

S2000? :shrug:
 

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Where have you been racing your elise?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I've been racing in Corpus Christi, Texas running autocrosses with the SCCA and in Laguna Vista, Texas for the occasional DE with the PCA.
 

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Where are you going to school? An elise would have been fine at my alma mater.
 

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I agree with the above..... Go with a Miata or S2000. Theese are THE ONLY other sports cars in the US and both are more livable than the Elise on a daily basis. I prefer the Miata for balance and overall packaging but it is down in HP v. the S2000.
 

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I agree with the above..... Go with a Miata or S2000. Theese are THE ONLY other sports cars in the US and both are more livable than the Elise on a daily basis. I prefer the Miata for balance and overall packaging but it is down in HP v. the S2000.

As a former S2000 owner I prefer the S2000. I only used it for a daily driver for a few months during a move but it sufficed.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
To any current/former S2000 owners: I know it might not be possible to make an accurate comparison between the two, but how would you compare the S2000 and the Elise?
 

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I've been racing in Corpus Christi, Texas running autocrosses with the SCCA and in Laguna Vista, Texas for the occasional DE with the PCA.
your question made it sound like you were actually racing your Elise.

Autocrossing is different than racing, and DE days are definately not racing.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
What are DE's then? With the PCA events, it's always either a 1.6 or 2.1 mile course with multiple cars running at the same time. Maybe they're calling them DE's for insurance reasons? I honestly have no clue.
 

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If you want more livable, go with the STi or Evo. If you want similar steering feel to the Elise, go with the Evo. There are a few owners of both Elises and Evos on this board that agree the Evo is about as close as your going to get at a decent price.

If you want to stay with a sports car/two door, I agree with the Miata/S2000 route.
 

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I have an Evo IX MR and Lotus Elise. The Evo is the most practical sports car I've ever had, and it's an amazing car for autocrossing, and other events. It's significantly heavier than the Elise though, and it takes a little while to get used to it, but the entire setup defies physics. Stock against Stock, the Evo would give the Elise a good run for its money around a track. I'd say it's the "best of all worlds".

There are a few drawbacks around the Evo, generally around the styling and the kind of attention it brings though. People "in the know" think its awesome and have nothing but good things to say, but most of the general population think its a modified Civic! Especially around where I live (California). The Evo X resolves a lot of these image issues, but is no longer a "real" Evo. It does have the advantage of Active Yaw Control, which makes it quicker, but it doesn't have a manual gearbox (it has a twin-clutch sequential box, which is very fast, but takes control away from you and probably won't be good in autocross). The Evo X also has a completely different engine, chassis and now even comes with Sat Nav and other creature comforts. They are now targetting the G35 and M3 markets.

I've owned several other sports cars, and I'd say other worthy cars are:

* Honda S2000 - the MK1 of this is a frenetic beast, and I personally loved it. Can be a little too energetic for some - you've got to really get in to the VTEC before it gets moving, but sounds amazing at 9000RPM!

* Mazda Miata - Again, I preferred the MK1 - much more raw as the later models became dulled. The 1.6L model was useless (seriously underpowered) so only consider the 1.8L (which was still underpowered, but better). Nice driving feel though, and an amazing gearbox. The later models had more power and better amenities, but I think they had reduced drivers appeal.

* Porsche Boxster - I have one of these right now too. They have great drivers feel and good dynamics, but the suspension is too soft for real performance driving. This can be upgraded though. The 3.2S has a decent amount of power, but the 2.7's are not bad either. Can be a little pricey depending on age and condition...

* Suburu WRX STI - Just like an Evo, but subtly different. Engine is lower down and in a flat-4 configuration, and they drivetrain feels different - generally if you're choosing between the two, it's down to your preference. I personally prefer the Evo as it feels more precise, is more flexible (modifiable), and I think looks much nicer than the STI.

* Toyota MR2 MK1 - The MR2 MK1 is a lightweight mid-engined sports car. Sound familiar? ;) I thought it felt very similar in driving to my Elise, except it's far easier to get in and out of! The latest incarnation (the Spyder) has gone back to the MK1 roots and become a lightweight sports car again - but if you can believe, it's less practical than an Elise! At least the Elise has a trunk (however small) ;) It was designed with help from a Lotus engineer, and I found it was quite nice to drive!

Hope this helps..

Thanks!

S.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for all the suggestions so far. No real questions on what anyone has said yet as I'm juggling work and looking into these suggestions, but I didn't want it to seem like I'm unappreciative.

Happy Easter,
~Jeremy K.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Damn, you beat me to asking about it. I was searching for S2000s in my area and there's a CR that I was JUST about to ask about. 2000 extra dollars isn't that much, and honestly, I do like the 'rarity' value of the CR. I'm hoping that the changed suspension would be worth it.

Right now I seem to be torn between an older model STi (I don't care for the new body that much) and an S2000 CR. At the same time, I'm seriously trying to convince myself the Elise would be fine to take to college, but I'm not doing a very good job of that.
 
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