Bald men and redheads rejoiced in 2006 when Porsche released a fixed top version of the phenomenal Porsche Boxster. Finally, there was a way to get crisp handling of a mid-engined Porsche without being subjected to the structural and solar issues that are endemic to floppy roofed cars...albeit at a considerable sticker price. This Cayman cost nearly $50k when new but thanks to the magic of depreciation, it now can be purchased for less than the price of a new Ford Focus. Find this 2007 Porsche Cayman offered for $16,500 in SF Bay Area, CA via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
Porsche introduced the high performance Cayman S version before the regular Cayman, which breaks every rule in the performance car release handbook. Regardless, the base Cayman was every bit an athletic performer as the S version, just with the dial turned down a few notches. What that means in the real world is that you can dial up the throttle pedal a few notches before getting hauled off in the paddy wagon...and that is money in the bank.
Powering the base Cayman in 2007 was a 2.7 litre M97.20 flat-6 rated at 245 horsepower and 201 ft-lbs of torque. Before someone starts talking about IMS issues, in 2007 Porsche introduced the M97 version of their flat-6 which included a new cam chain drive system that reduced stress on the IMS bearing and a redesigned/beefier IMS bearing -- it doesn't put the IMS issue to bed, but PJs are on and teeth are brushed. This Cayman is equipped with a 5-speed gearbox (the base Cayman was also available with an optional 6-spd) which is a perfectly good gearbox and forces you to fight for the peaky power of the smaller engine. I really hate to argue that the lesser performer in a family is a better car...but sometimes less is more.
See a nicer example of a modern car you could drive everyday and have everyone think you are loaded? firstname.lastname@example.org