DriveTribe community car of the decade - sports car category
For the majority of people, the only term they hold in their vocabulary to denote performance vehicles is “sports car”. For us petrol heads, they represent a fantastically diverse and broad spectrum of machinery - from the obtainable, to the origins of exotica. The nominations in the sports car category are...
The undisputed darling of the nerdilicious automotive media - and for good reason. While almost all other sports cars are prioritising the pursuit of power over all other elements, the Alpine is all about being light. While it may not be as fast as a 718 Cayman, the speed just isn’t as important as the effervescent driving experience the Alpine offers. Would it be better with a manual gearbox? Absolutely. But it does at least represent a smidgen of hope in a world quickly becoming devoid of purity. Speaking of which...
BMW initially branded the i8 as a supercar - but personally, I see that as entirely unsupportable. With a turbocharged 1.5L 3-Cylinder engine, augmented by hybrid assistance, the i8 sends 369bhp to all 4 wheels. Along with the futuristic powertrain comes styling to match - with a distinct aesthetic feature at the rear that makes it look like it’s giving birth to a Porsche 991. The driving experience is far from pure, but it is a functional crystal ball that gives us visions of our automotive future. Whether that’s a good thing is another matter.
Chevrolet Corvette C8
It’s all change for the Corvette - which now has it’s engine in the middle (just in case you haven’t heard). Not only that, but due to how the engine has to be electronically linked to the transmission, Chevrolet are adamant that the Corvette will never again be available with a manual gearbox. But that little blemish hasn’t prevented it from becoming an instant hit amongst the American automotive media. Calm your trousers, conspiracy theorists - I’m sure nationalism had nothing to do with it (!)
Porsche 718 Cayman GT4
The Cayman GT4 is a sports car that makes so much sense, you can’t help but wonder whether it was conceived during a moment of planetary alignment. With a 4L normally aspirated version of the 992 Carrera’s 3L Twin-Turbo Flat-6, the GT4 sends 414bhp to its rear wheels via a 6-speed manual gearbox. How many other cars can you say have a normally aspirated engine in the middle, and a manual gearbox? Really and truly, the only genuine criticism you can give the 718 is in regard to how long its gear ratios are. But apart from that, it’s epic!
Porsche 991.2 GT3
Equipped with a 6-speed manual gearbox, the 991.2 GT3 is one of the greatest sports cars ever made. The 4L NA Flat-6 sends shockwaves through every fibre of your being as it shoots its way up to 9,000rpm, with the overall balance of the car enabling both lap times and drifting pleasure. It’s a car built by enthusiasts for enthusiasts, and that shows in its every element.
On entirely the opposite end of the spectrum from the Porsche is the Toyota GT86. With a mere 205 horsepower from its 2L normally aspirated Boxer-4, it isn’t going to be winning many races against fellow performance cars. Fortunately however, it’s main focus has never been pure speed. For the GT86 was designed with fun being the main priority. As a result, you could train a Gorilla to slide a GT86. For that, and how relatively affordable it is, it’s an important sports car figure for this decade.
This year saw the Supra name return to a Toyota - despite the BMW logo appearing on it more than the word “Supra” does. Perhaps the biggest problem facing the new Supra was the legend constructed for the old one by people on the internet who’d never driven one. The new Supra is a sports car that does everything well, but arguably, nothing brilliantly. Despite that however, it is without question one of the most significant sports cars to come from the past decade, and that’s why it earns a position in this vote.
And with that, you have all of your contenders in the sports car category. Cast your vote below for your favourite sports car of the decade - the winner of which will go through to the final vote with the winners of the other 9 categories. Voting closes at 7pm GMT on Monday the 9th of December.