If you’re a car guy (or gal) and from time to time suffer – as many of us do – from a “grass is greener” mentality, then track days can be torturous.
Just when you think you’ve got the track car of your dreams, an HPDE interaction with something faster, apparently better, or just different may have you second guessing your entire vehicular direction. Due to the wealth of cars often on hand for track days, this trap awaits at just about every event.
Thankfully, a wide variety of track day experiences permitted us to shake the “grass is greener” pitfall many years ago, and come to the realization that mechanical preparedness is far more important to the enjoyment of track days than is car type.
And out on track it felt like it. Change of direction was impeccable. Under hard braking the old M3 was unstressed, poised, and with very little front end dive. It took about two laps to come to the realization that although we were lapping at 10-15 seconds off the pace of another car in rotation that day, we were having at least as much fun, if not more.
That other car was a R8 V10.
Value differential between the two cars at the time: Approximately $150,000. Curb appeal? E36 M3 is a classic, but come on… Acceleration comparison? Don’t bother. Overall objective performance: R8 V10 plays in a different league.
But despite all of the factors on paper that should have made the R8 the hands down favorite out on track, the E36 M3 experience wasn’t overshadowed.
Think you need a supercar to have fun out on track, or a “better” car will unlock next level HPDE enjoyment? Think again. There’s numerous cars for sub-$10,000 that any track driving enthusiast can truly appreciate.
Take our word for it, or just ask any “Miata guy.”