The third generation Volkswagen Golf made its debut in Germany in 1991, and it was two years later in 1993 that VW introduced the new Golf GTI. This car had a 2.0-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine that developed 148 bhp. The car was a much nicer everyday car than the previous generation, with better equipment and a fresher interior, but it wasn’t a better drivers car. It had the same 8 second 0 – 60 time as the GTI MK2 but it lacked the same visual punch. As such, MK3 GTI’s today can be picked up for next to nothing, whilst the classic MK2 commands a higher premium.
Ford Fiesta RS Turbo
The Ford Fiesta RS Turbo, produced between 1990 – 1992, was based on the earlier XR2i which was one of the best hot hatches of the 80s. With 14-inch alloy wheels on 185/55 Pirelli tyres, the RS Turbo handled like a dream and was among the best hot hatches to drive on the limit. Power came from a 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine, which produced 131 bhp and 134 lb /ft of torque. This was enough for the RS Turbo to accelerate from 0 – 62 mph in just 7.9 seconds, but because the Garrett T2 turbocharger had a higher power potential, many Fiesta RS Turbo’s made closer to 160 bhp tuned.
Ford Escort RS Cosworth
Produced between 1992 and 1996, the Ford Escort RS Cosworth was an extreme 3-door hatch with all-wheel-drive and a chassis designed to qualify for Group A rally. It was, without a doubt, one of the best handling cars of its generation. It was also one of the best looking. Standard, the Escort RS Cosworth produced 225 bhp and 229 lb /ft of torque, which was enough for the car to go from 0 – 62 mph in just 5.7 seconds. The most expensive versions today are completely standard and un-tuned, with a price tag in excess of £15k.
The E39 BMW M5 was exactly what an M5 is supposed to be – a very powerful fun sports car that is also a big luxurious family sedan. The M5’s 4.9L V8 output a hearty 400hp and led the car to 0-60mph time of under five seconds – all while bringing home the groceries.
The E36 M3 is known for its superb handling and balance – the car remains very popular and sought after today. This is the car for someone who wants performance, affordability, practicality, comfort, and a fun driving experience wrapped up in a timeless design.
Porsche 993 Turbo
There’s a reason why the 993 turbo is trading at prices much higher than its successor, the 996 turbo. The 993 turbo was the last air cooled 911 and thus, many people feel as if it was the end of an era of Porsche history. Having had the pleasure of sitting behind many 911 turbos, to this day, the 993 remains my personal favorite. It’s hard to find another car you could have beat the crap out of for 15 years that went up in value as a result. It’s no surprise it has made the list.