21 stunning cars that are worth splurging on

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

Even if you missed the chance to buy a dream car at the end of 2018, there’s never really a bad time to purchase a vehicle you’ve long coveted.

So why not think about splurging on something special? Sure, you can do the responsible thing and live within your means, or opt for versatile basic transportation. But that’s, well, kind of boring.

It’s a big, bright world of cars out there, and every once in a while, spending the college fund might be justified. Kidding! Not justified!

But if you have the dough, or the stupendous credit score, and just want to fulfil a childhood fantasy, why not? You only live once, and you owe it to yourself to experience an exciting set of wheels.

Here are 21 of our favourite cars to splurge on – and not every one costs an arm and leg:

Photos by Hollis Johnson, unless otherwise indicated.

Ferrari 488 Spyder

Matthew DeBord/BI

Not the 488 GTB, the latest of Ferrari’s mid-engine sports cars and a brilliant machine. Rather, the drop-top version, the 488 Spyder, for a cool $US393,000.

Porsche 911 Carrera GTS

Hollis Johnson

At $US120,000, it’s far from a bargain. But the level of performance on offer for the top trim level at this stratum of 911-ness is stunning. To do better you have to jump up to the Turbo or GT3.

Aston Martin DB11 Volante

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For $US273,244, you can pretend you’re James Bond, or at least an madly suave human enjoying top-down motoring is epic British style.

Rolls-Royce Phantom

Hollis Johnson

At $US644,000, the plush Phantom is still the most expensive vehicle we’ve ever tested. If you want the limo or limos, this is your ticket. Just make sure you hire a chauffeur.

Ford Shelby GT350 Mustang


Starting at about $US60,000, the Shelby GT350 offers an insane level of trackworthy performance for the price.

Chevy Corvette ZR1

Matthew DeBord/BI

Terrifying, yes. But the 755-horsepower mge-Vette is one of the best ways to spend $US137,000 – and it’s likely the end of the line for front-engine Corvettes, as the next iteration is expected to be a mid-engine machine.

BMW 7-Series

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At well north of $US100,000 – $US130,000 when given the M-Sport treatment – the 7-Series is BMW’s flagship, containing an epic amount of performance, luxury, and technology.

Range Rover Evoque Convertible

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The well-optioned version of this offbeat ride that we tested came in at about $US64,000. You won’t find a weirder way to part with your dollars, although you do get the combo of drop-top motoring and offroad capability.

McLaren 720S

Hollis Johnson

Magnificent in every way, primed for race-track shredding, the 720S will set you back $US300,000, upswinging doors included.

Tesla Model X P100D

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If you want the Tesla with the mostest, this P100D trim level of the Model X SUV has every bell and whistle anyone could want, on an all-electric vehicle that stickers at around $US150,000.

Porsche Panamera

Hollis Johnson

You have options when it comes to one of the finest four-doors ever built by human hands. Such is the choice of spending between $US85,000 and $US180,000 for the privilege of Porsche ownership.

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio

Hollis Johnson

For $US77,000, you can savour the Italian alternative to sport sedans from BMW and Mercedes.

Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid

Matthew DeBord/BI

At nearly $US50,000, the best minivan on the market is also the only hybrid for sale.

Ford Raptor

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If you like your pickups wild and crazy, the $US62,000 Raptor is the venerable F-150 turned up to 11. Or 12. Or 112.

Audi RS3

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We checked out a $US67,000 version of this Audi and concluded that it’s just about the best small luxury performance car money can buy.

Jeep Wrangler

Matthew DeBord/BI

For $US36,000, Jeeps delivers a proper off-roader that downright crude by today’s standards. But that kind of the point.

Porsche Macan Turbo

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Think this SUV is overpriced at $US96,000? Well, it is overpriced. But the performance that the high price tag delivers is staggering.

Alfa Romero 4C

Hollis Johnson

The $US74,000 sticker might seem high, until you consider that this mid-engine missile is essentially a Ferrari roadster.

Mazda MX-5 Miata

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For $US31,000, you can obtain the latest and greatest version of the legendary Japanese roadster – and never stop smiling.

Mercedes-Benz G Wagon

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The Mercedes-Benz Gelandewagen is $US137,000 of uncompromising, military inspired offroad competence. Sure, the Hollywood celebs love it. But you use it to escape the zombie apocalypse.

Lamborghini Huracán Performante

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At $US320,000, this is the Lambo you take to the track. Although if you like to watch teenagers stop in their tracks when you drive by, you can take it out on the normal roads, as well.

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