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14 Cheap Beginner Drift Cars That Don't Break the Bank

Updated 25 Feb 2020 255.0k views14 items

Building a good, cheap drift car these days isn't quite as easy as it used to be. An ideal drift car is typically four things: Old, cheap, tunable for immense power, and (most critically) rear-wheel drive. That wasn't such a great feat in the 1990s, when there were many 10- to 15-year old cars capable of footing the bill. But here in the 2010s, things are a bit different.

Now, buying a 10- to 15-year-old car now means buying a car from the 1990s or early 2000s--probably the single worst period for manual transmissions and rear-wheel-drive in American history. That makes pickings for decent drift cars pretty slim in 21st Century America. Basically, unless you want a truck, Mustang or Camaro, you're going to have to spend more for a newer car, sacrifice performance with an older one from the '90s, or get a really old car and put a ton of work into modifications. There are also a few vintage Japanese cars that are great for drifting.

Obviously, none of this makes building an awesome drift car impossible. It just means that, unless you want a Camaro or Mustang, you'll have to be a little more creative and flexible in your approach. Think outside the box, and consider options that might seem a little weird or crazy at first. They say necessity is the mother of invention, and hardship the father of creativity.

Sure, you're going to have to be very creative to build a good cheap car for drifting these days. But that just means you'll end up with something awesomely unique, and completely your own creation. Not exactly a bad thing, most would say. After all, the best cars for drifting usually have tons of quirks and eccentricities.

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