For the longest time, European sports cars were regarded as the best in the world from an engineering point of view and the driving experience itself. Of course, over time, the rest of the world had the chance to prove themselves in the field. But even so, many car enthusiasts regard owning and driving a Euro sports car to be on a higher level compared to its Japanese and American counterparts.

Undoubtedly, because of the fancier and luxury nature of European vehicles, their sports car also commanded a higher price premium than those of other origins. So the dream of owning a European sports car has been reserved for only a select few who can afford one new.

Naturally, for the rest of us, the used car market is where we'll have to go to satisfy our Euro needs. As high as the initial price is, the depreciation hits just as hard. For the lucky few that are patient enough, here is a list of some great European sports car you can find for under 10,000$.

10 BMW E82 135i

BMW 135i

For those that couldn't afford the BMW 1M or simply missed out on the limited run, there was the 135i. Although it isn't as amazing a the legendary BMW 1M, it makes up with extreme depreciation. While the 1M can still easily go for 40,000$, the 135i can be found under the 10,000$ mark.

What that nets you is around 300 HP from its turbocharged N54 or N55 engine with an immense amount of tuning potential if you want to put that money you saved into making this a performance monster.

9 Audi B7 S4

Audi S4 B7

With stricter emissions and environmental regulations, the existence of big naturally aspirated engines is pretty much non-existent at the present time. While the equivalent RS4 is still not in the affordable range, the Audi S4 is now easily within reach. On the plus side, the B7 S4 comes equipped with a detuned 4.2L naturally aspirated V8, something that won't be finding its way in any new cars any time soon or ever. The NA V8 gives you a healthy 306 HP with an all-conquering Quattro AWD, making the S4 good all year round.

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8 BMW E36 M3

BMW E36 M3

Quite possibly the greatest sports car on this list, the underrated E36 generation M3 is often forgotten by BMW fanatics. The late Paul Walker having owned 7 of the E36 M3 is proof enough of its greatness. The US version of the E36 M3 came with a weaker 240 HP 3.oL Straight 6 S50 engine. A perfect chance to get one for under 10 grand before the enthusiasts wake up and the value of the E36 skyrockets like other generation M3s.

7 BMW E85 Z4

silver bmw z4

Previous soft-top BMW Z4 is easily one of the best looking in the series. The last Chris Bangle designed Z4 will be remembered in the automotive world for its sneakily implemented Z design on the side profile of the car. In its 3.0L form, the BMW N54 engine is good for around 230 HP, which would be the best one for a budget sports car, as both the 3.0si and M coupe will be out of reach at that price point.

6 Fiat 500 Abarth

yellow fiat 500 abarth

Every true enthusiast loves a good lightweight and small hot hatch. despite the slow sales, the Fiat 500 Abarth is easily one of the fan-favorite in that category. A small nimble and exciting car that barks louder than it bites, the 500 Abarth provides all the fun of a full out sports car for much less. Its diminutive 1.4L turbocharged 4 cylinder provides a puny 133 HP and yet once behind the wheel none of this actually matters, proving that size isn't everything.

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5 BMW E92 335i

BMW E90 335i

The big brother of the 135i, like the entry-level coupe the legendary 3 series is bigger but more the same. For those that couldn't get their hands on the legendary E90 generation M3, the 335i was there as a cheaper alternative, cheaper but more easily accessible power increase. With the same engine option as the 135i above, the 3.0L 300 HP straight 6 was ready to be tuned to produce much more power to meet any demands and with plenty of aftermarket support.

4 Porsche 986 Boxster

Porsche Boxster

The first-generation Porsche Boxster was a stroke of genius by the Stuttgart manufacturer. Offering a more financially accessible entry-level Porsche for the poorer fans, Porsche had struck gold. In its highest available trim, the Boxster S had a 3.2L Flat 6 engine capable of 258 HP and a zero to sixty of a very quick 5.7s. If you can get over the hairdresser stigma, the Porsche convertible is easily available for under 10,000$, which is a low price to pay to experience a fantastic European sports car.

3 Mini F55 Cooper S

Mini Cooper
via thecarconnection

The Mini Cooper S has always been a cult favorite, without any true competitor in its genre the Mini has always benefited from great public opinions. Ever since BMW has taken control of the Mini brand, it has been on the rise around the world. Pinned as the FWD version of BMW drivers car philosophy, the Mini is a great option to get into a newish European sports car for cheap. Its ability to zip around town is second to no one, and the confidence-inspiring go-kart-like handling is something no FWD cars were able to replicate.


2 Volkswagen MK7 Golf GTI


The Golf GTI will always hang around the lips of enthusiasts everywhere, and for good reason. Which makes the Mk7 GTI such a desired vehicle, a jack of all trade sports car that can provide all the fun of sports cars with the daily drivability that others might struggle to offer. Its turbocharged 4 cylinder engine gives a good 207 HP to one of the best FWD layouts on the market. With plenty of used examples on the market prices are very competitive, making it rather easy to find a cheap one.

1 Audi MK2 TT

A 2013 Audi TT Coupe at the golden hour

The sadly now discontinued Audi TT was a great little sports car. Its second-generation offered a nicer and more aggressive design compared to its predecessor. Built on the same platform as the VW Golf, the Audi TT also offered the Quattro AWD system, making this the better option for those that have to live through winter. With the latest model discontinued, this might be a good time to buy one before too many people think they classics and increase the prices.

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