Posted By dannykao on 15 May 2013 01:32 AM
Looks like you are expanding your car list, and I can chime in more:
Evo 9 is great for STU, but to prep it and make it competitive the street ride goes to crap. Not a pleasant DD. I had a fully prepped STU for 3 years.
Mazdaspeed 3 - a great DD, an awful autocross car. Too much power and not that great of a diff makes a tire killer. I had the car for 6 weeks and trade it in. Great DD though.
We all almost witness an Abarth almost tip over at the Nationals last year. I think the car is very cool, not sure if I want to autocross it. I would be worrying about it too much.
Mini Cooper is also pretty good. But if you want to C5Z to begin with, not sure if you will like the power. I had a mini cooper for a year, and C5Z over two years.
Personally, I would go out buy a E36 and make it into a STX car. I just bought one for $995 and two test dummies drove it at the Dover Tour and I drove it at the PCA event in Hershey PA and had a great time. The car is a hoot to drive and my total "investment" is $3500. I was 0.9 behind one of the fastest STS CRX in the country and I had a bad diff. For the money and enjoyment level I would simply keep the M5 as DD and spend $3K - $5K to get a 325i, is, or 328i and go STX. Depending on the State the car might be historic if you get a 1993. Insurance will be cheap and no inspection and emission. There is a lot to like about a 93 325i/is
Here are a couple of stupid E36 STX built videos for your enjoyment. Have fun!
Danny, thank you for the thoughts. It looks like you are having a blast with the E36! I wish I could afford another vehicle, but with 2 boys on the insurance, our insurance rates are a tough nut to swallow as it is. As much as I would like to, adding to the stable isn't practical-maybe I can talk them into replacing their vehicles with something for autocross, but, availability will be an issue.
I went and sat in a BRZ...it's not as tight as I thought it would be. I looked at the possibility of trading the M5 vs selling it. I am not confident that the resale on the M5 is where I need it to be, so I am likely keeping it. And, I love the car. However, the last time out, I chunked the left front down to the chords of the PS2s. This was only the 4th autocross on these tires. I can't afford to go through rubber this quickly.
I did I pick up 4 used RS3s for the front, and another set of stock front wheels with Sumitomos on them. If I go through these by the end of the year, I'll hang it up with SCCA, and end up somewhere that allows camber adjustment on the M5 in a relatively stock class. If I am going to be a backmarker, I want it to be because everyone in the class is a better driver than me, not because they have deeper pockets.
Thanks again, everyone. Great advise! I hope that I can figure something out!