Punch doesn't have to punch a hole in your bank balance.
MERC’S A45 AMG might be an expensive car in isolation, but in terms of the performance it offers for the money – both initial outlay and ongoing costs – it’s actually a ripper bargain. Hey, what else does 0-100km/h in 4.4sec and a 12-second quarter for $76K? Sure, it drinks 98-octane premium, but it can get 6.9L/100km (on the official test, at least).
The service interval is long (12 months), which means more time baiting BMW owners and less time in the workshop, while the 60 percent resale is pretty good – it sheds $30K in three years.
IT DOESN’T quite have the AMG’s grunt, and without AWD it can’t hope to match its acceleration figures, but BMW’s rear-drive alternative is more involving, and runs happily on 95 RON.
Lotus Elise S Roadster
SIMILAR speed to the pair that beat it, but that’s not the point in the Lotus, which is the nearest thing you can get to a road-legal go-kart. Strong resale makes buying new a reasonable proposition, and gives you a handy three years of warranty.
|Performance Cars $75K-$150K||Mercedes-AMG A45 4MATIC||BMW M235i||Lotus Elise S Roadster 1.8SC|
|Combined cycle fuel (L/100km)||6.9||8.1||7.5|
|Fuel RON (min. rec.)||98||95||95|
|Three-year fuel cost||$4431||$4923||$4558|
|Redbook resale (%)||60.3||57.8||58.6|
|AAMI insurance premium||$1766||$1529||$2003|
|Service interval (months)||12||12||12|