October 2007
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Pee wee sports cars
In addition to our economical cars, we tested three sporty small cars in their higher-performance and turbocharged versions: the Mazdaspeed3, Mini Cooper S, and Saturn Sky.

The Mazdaspeed3 is based on the already fun-to-drive and practical Mazda3, but has a stronger powertrain and a sport-oriented suspension.

The first-generation Mini Cooper S we tested had excellent handling and performance, and the redesign continues to be a lot of fun.

We weren’t as impressed when we first tested one of GM’s sporty convertible twins, the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky. But the high-performance version of the Sky, the Redline, has a more powerful turbocharged engine that improves the driving experience.

Prices for the sporty vehicles range from $25,195 for the Mazdaspeed3 to $30,289 for the Sky.

Similar sporty cars are on the horizon. A redesigned Subaru WRX, the high performance version of the Impreza, will replace the highly regarded outgoing model this fall. Mitsubishi will reintroduce the EVO and Volkswagen will launch the R32, high-performance versions of the Lancer and GTI respectively, in late 2007.