5 fun, fast and affordable cars less than $20,000

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Mini Cooper hardtop
 Mini Cooper hardtop
  • Price: $19,700
  • Gas mileage:
    • City - 29 mpg
    • Highway - 37 mpg

The 2013 Mini Cooper hardtop is the least expensive of all of the manufacturer's models, but it doesn't sacrifice much in the way of performance. It's equipped with a 1.6-liter, four-cylinder engine that rips out 121 horsepower and 114 foot-pounds of torque.

The standard transmission is a six-speed manual, which Mini estimates will get you to 60 mph from a standstill in 8.4 seconds.

If you're looking for better performance, hit the standard "sport mode" button. It will adjust various settings and provide rapid acceleration and tighter steering, according to Mini.

In addition, Mini includes additional performance and safety items on the vehicle as standard, including anti-lock brakes, electronic brake-force distribution, cornering brake control, dynamic stability control and dynamic traction control.

Performance suspension is also included, which features multilink rear suspension to help keep the wheels on the road at their optimal angle.


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