Cool cars to the reunion
Showing how far you’ve come over the past decade, or four, is a big part of any high school reunion.
Among the questions that your former high school classmates will ask — “Are you married? Where do you work? What do you do?” — is what kind of car do you drive.
To help make a good first impression, Bankrate has assembled its list of seven cool cars to drive to your high school reunion. These aren’t cars you buy for the event. Rather, they are the cars you own that express where you are in life.
You won’t find any big-ticket exotics or luxury cars on this list. We’ve kept the price tag less than $50,000. In fact, some picks fall under $30,000. Most are two-door coupes or roadsters because they’re hotter than typical sedans. After all, it’s all about looking cool, not necessarily rich.
No other filters determined our picks. Although fuel economy didn’t influence these choices, we include the miles per gallon estimates.
All prices reflect the models and options described. They also include the automatic transmission when it’s an option, but they don’t include the delivery charge.
So, dust off that letterman’s jacket, shake out those pompoms, slap on a “remember me?” name tag and drive to that reunion.
2013 Audi A5 2.0 Premium Quattro
- Price: $39,050
- City – 20 mpg
- Highway – 30 mpg
Sleek and sporty, the exterior of the A5 is an attention-grabber. With looks compelling enough to silence the curb standers as it glides to a stop, you can be assured of commanding everyone’s attention as you exit this luxury coupe.
Armed with all-wheel drive, the A5 will get you to your destination regardless of the weather. Delivering the turbocharged 2-liter four-cylinder engine’s 211 horsepower to the wheels is accomplished by an eight-speed driver-shiftable automatic transmission. Reaching 60 mph from a standstill takes just 6.2 seconds.
Audi maintains a high standard in the quality and workmanship of its interiors as demonstrated in the A5. All of the bells and whistles associated with a luxury car are here. It’s everything you want in a look-at-me car.
2013 Chevrolet Camaro 2SS
- Price: $37,320
- City – 16 mpg
- Highway – 25 mpg
You don’t necessarily have to be from the graduating class of 1980 or earlier to get your classmates’ heads turning as you rumble to a stop in Chevy’s iconic muscle car. Sure, those Generation-Yers might prefer a Nissan GT-R, but they won’t be able to resist stealing a peek when you pop the hood on the Camaro SS.
With its less-than-impressive fuel economy, you’ll be glad you are going to your high school reunion and not a meeting of the Sierra Club, but getting there on time shouldn’t be an issue with the 426-horsepower 6.2-liter V-8 churning out a zero-to-60 mph time of about five seconds. The transmission is a six-speed driver-shiftable automatic.
A 7-inch color screen monitors things for the nine-speaker Boston Acoustics-infused audio system with iPod interface. Leather-covered sport seats keep front passengers firmly in place.
2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 2.0T Premium
- Price: $28,750
- City – 20 mpg
- Highway – 31 mpg
When you talk about “more bang for the buck,” Hyundai practically invented the concept. A prime example is its Genesis Coupe. You can get the base 2.0T for $24,250, but we chose the Premium upgrade primarily for its extras, such as keyless entry/start and an enhanced audio system with 10 speakers, touch-screen navigation system and an 8-gigabyte hard-drive music storage.
An optional eight-speed driver-shiftable automatic transmission hustles the 2-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine’s 274 horsepower to the rear wheels.
Leather-trimmed with cloth inserts, the seats have a distinctive upscale look. Among the other standard features are power sunroof, automatic climate control and iPod interface.
Of course, there are also those impressive five-year/60,000-mile bumper-to-bumper and 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranties.
2013 Infiniti G37 Coupe Journey
- Price: $40,400
- City – 19 mpg
- Highway – 27 mpg
Despite the fact it’s now in the sixth year of its current life cycle, the G37 Coupe remains fresh and compelling. Adding to the impressive mountain of evidence that Infiniti injects sportiness into luxury as well as any carmaker, the G37 Coupe is a near-ideal balance of performance and refinement.
In the performance column, a 330-horsepower 3.7-liter V-6 sends its output through a seven-speed, driver-shiftable automatic transmission to the rear wheels.
On the luxury side of the G37 Coupe equation are dual-zone automatic climate control, leather seating, heated front seats, Bluetooth connectivity, and an audio system with a 7-inch color display and iPod interface.
You may not have the fanciest ride at the reunion, but you will have one that most of your classmates recognize as a premium sport coupe.
2013 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Coupe
- Price: $45,040
- City – 20 mpg
- Highway – 28 mpg
The priciest of our picks, the highly stylized Evoque Coupe Pure Plus would command attention regardless of its pedigree, but that it’s a Land Rover ensures your classmates will take notice.
The Evoque doesn’t offer as much interior space as some competitors, but that’s the compromise for its dynamic styling. More than just a pretty face, Evoque comes standard with all-wheel drive with Land Rover’s Terrain Response system that allows drivers to dial in specific conditions and surfaces, Hill Start Assist and Hill Descent Control.
A robust 240-horsepower 2-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine delivers output to the wheels via a six-speed driver-shiftable automatic transmission.
Leather seating, dual-zone automatic climate control and a touch-screen interface with Bluetooth connectivity are also standard.
2013 Subaru BRZ Premium
- Price: $26,595
- City – 25 mpg
- Highway – 34 mpg
Newly designed for 2013, the BRZ looks like a top-dollar sports car, but boasts a bargain-basement price. The BRZ is the only rear-wheel-drive car in Subaru’s lineup.
Engineered to tackle tight turns, the BRZ excels in handling thanks to the low center of gravity of its 200-horsepower 2-liter four-cylinder engine and nearly balanced front-to-rear weight distribution.
We’ve included the $1,100 cost of the optional six-speed driver-shiftable automatic transmission.
In contrast to its stunning curb appeal, the interior styling is simple and unadorned. Yet, it’s packed with standard features, such as Bluetooth connectivity, navigation system, touch-screen interface and an eight-speaker audio system with iPod interface.
Not just a pretty face, the BRZ — in addition to impressing your classmates — is the ideal car to challenge the mountain roads on a sunny Saturday afternoon.
2013 Volkswagen CC 2.0T Sport Plus
- Price: $32,995
- City – 21 mpg
- Highway – 32 mpg
The only four-door on this list, the Volkswagen CC masquerades as a two-door with its rakish coupe-like roofline.
We’ve included the CC because it simply looks more luxurious and elegant than its price tag indicates. Classmates who don’t know any better will think you spent a lot more. Moreover, Volkswagen doesn’t sell an overwhelming number of them, so you won’t see yourself coming and going at every intersection.
Boosting the standard content over the $30,965 base model, the CC Sport Plus comes with a six-speed driver-shiftable automatic transmission and navigation system. Other standard features: 12-way power-adjustable heated front seats, automatic climate control and touch-screen control for the eight-speaker audio system with iPod integration.
A 200-horsepower 2-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine turns the front wheels.