We don’t want them to cost the earth but don’t expect them to be cheap either. Alvin Thomas finds three sportscars that are hard to beat for fun per rial.
There’s a fine line between a sportscar and a supercar, and that line is almost always a few extra zeroes in the pricetag. For instance, a Ferrari or a Lamborghini could cost anywhere between RO90,000 and RO100,000. But do you really have to spend that much to turn some heads and have a bit of fun?
Here, we look at three of the best sportscars and supercars that not only give the big boys a run for their money but also cost less than your average Italian nameplate.
It’s been a decade since the Nissan GT-R R35 aka “Godzilla” hit the headlines, and almost half a century since the original Skyline went on sale in Japan. Ever since its inception, Nissan (formerly Datsun) has managed to make some waves with the marque, slowly transforming it into a supercar with exceptional driving dynamics and lot of style – like most of its European and American rivals. For 2017, Nissan has upped the game more than ever before, with a monstrous 3.8-litre twin turbocharged V6 engine pumping out an almost sadistic 565hp and 612Nm of torque. Why sadistic? We’ve driven the previous generation GT-R enough to know that it was mind-bogglingly quick. We even managed to clock a 0-100kph time of 3.8-seconds – in summer! There are reports that suggest the new GT-R will break that record by a whole second. That figure also makes it faster than most hypercars such as the Pagani Zonda and the Ferrari Enzo and almost on a par with the Bugatti Veyron. But the “Godzilla” isn’t all speed and no corners either. Its complex, four-wheel drive system makes way for almost neck-snapping cornering speeds, and it should do that without too much understeer either (but obviously, we’re only speculating on the latter). So how much is all this worth? A mere RO50,000. This has to be the bargain of the century, folks.
Why do we think the F-Type is the coolest sportscar ever made? It’s partly because it is actually reminiscent of the classic E-Type Jaguar, and partly because it looks seductive. With its long hood and wide rear haunches, the F-Type never fails to astound us when prowling around the streets of Muscat. There are two variants available; namely, a V6 and a V8. Both are extremely potent and mighty quick, with 375hp and 542hp respectively. But the party piece of the car has to be the exhaust. We understand that it takes more than one component to make a car. However, the F-Type is known for its throaty exhaust that even crackles and pops at the traffic behind you – much like having an angry dog bark at traffic on your weekly drives. Get it in convertible form and you’ll find yourself driving with the top down more often. Starting from RO25,000, this really is one of the best cars to come out of the UK.
The original 1965 Ford Mustang was arguably the daddy of all muscle cars. However, the sportscar, which is now in its sixth generation, is still considered to be the definitive V8 muscle car, and also a possible cure for ecomentalists. Sure, the car now comes in a V6 and also in a four-cylinder moniker but it’s still the V8 that we’re interested in. We’ve taken the car out on many occasions and feel it is still the perfect way to have some fun without breaking any speed limits and also without breaking your wallet. The drivetrain of the Mustang is extremely engaging and there’s plenty of power on tap too – 435 ponies, to be precise. Moreover, the interior and the overall fit and finish have come on in leaps and bounds over those in previous years too so it is a pleasant place to be. The new independent rear-suspension also makes way for a pleasant experience on corners, in comparison with the previous generation’s live-axle. Now you know why the Mustang, from just RO15,500, is one the most sold sportscars in the country.