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Find the Top 10 Used MRydes to Buy and Build

Tunable and Affordable

Photography by MAX Staff

Look at the pricings of the current VW, Audi, and BMW cars. They’re pretty damn high and seem to be tailored to those guys that made their money on the Internet and got out before it started to nosedive. An ’01 VW GTI VR6 has a $22,900 base price, an ’01 Audi A4 1.8T quattro goes for $26,740, and a new BMW M3 can be had for $46,045. These prices are enough to make a grown man cry, especially if that man has the desire for one of these cars but doesn’t have the dosh. That, my friends, is why there is a used car market. On the following pages, you’ll find a list of ten cars that we think are the most affordable German cars to modify. Though we specify model years, it is truly all up to personal taste as to what you buy. For the most part, we tried to stay away from OBD II cars (’96 and up), as the tighter emissions control can hinder performance. However, some models are better purchases as OBD II cars, as they have more parts available. Also, we chose some cars based on their chassis design. For these cars, we chose the last model years available to better the chances of finding a car in good condition. Kelley Blue Book pricing is listed, as is the average price of cars that we found in the LA area.

One thing to always remember when making an investment into something like a car is to go with what you like. Maybe you can afford to buy a ’96 M3, but you’d prefer to spend your money on a ’92 GTI and tweak it. Don’t just go with something that you think others will like—buy the car that you want. One other thing to remember when picking a used car (just like picking a new car): be prepared to walk away if whoever is selling the car isn’t willing to meet you on some middle ground between his asking price and what you want to pay. Happy hunting!

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