5 Best Used Porsches Under $50,000 (5 to Avoid)

2016 Porsche Cayman GT4, Red

Porsche has been making powerful, precision-steering sports cars since the early 1930s, and it doesn’t plan to stop anytime soon. Whether you want to show your madness on the track or enjoy some luxury on your daily drives, Porsche has something in store for you. The reputation of the Stuttgart-based carmaker is based on sports cars such as the Cayman, 911 and Boxster.

However, if you want more comfort and functionality than performance, SUVs like the Cayenne and Panamera are worth considering. That said, brand new Porsches are quite expensive, so you may want to opt for used ones. If you have $50,000 to spend on a Porsche, these are the ones to consider and avoid.

Related: 10 Best Porsche Models of the Decade

10 Best: Porsche Cayenne 2017

Porsche brings the driving attitude and visuals of its sports cars to the family-friendly Cayenne. The five-passenger SUV has the soul of a sports car, yet offers everyday practicality, so even the basic Cayenne is quite a steal at $39,000

Porsche spoils customers with numerous options when it comes to powertrains, all with four-wheel drive. The base Cayenne makes up to 300 horsepower with a 3.6-liter V6 and 8-speed automatic transmission.

9 Worst: 2003 Porsche 986 Boxster

The Porsche Boxsters from the late 90s to early 2000s are quite affordable, but if you’re big on reliability, it’s in your best interest to avoid them. The 2003 Boxster managed to collect the largest number of flaws and since Porsche’s repair parts and labor costs are quite on the high side, it’s better to look elsewhere for an affordable sports car.

The first-generation Boxster comes with a new engine that’s also in the 911, but this engine is the main concern. Owners of the 2003 Boxster have reported engine rattling and the intermediate shaft bearing has a tendency to blow on the road after just a few years.

8 Best: Porsche Cayman 2016

The Porsche Cayman looks and feels good to drive, with responsive handling and smooth-shifting transmissions. If you need a daily driver to blast through tight turns and back roads, the 2016 Cayman is a cool pick and you can get a used one for $45,000

The 2016 Cayman isn’t all that different from the 2014 iteration and the Boxster. Porsche offers four engines and two transmissions for the 2016 Cayman. The base Cayman gets 275 horsepower and 213 lb-ft of torque from a 2.7-liter flat-six.

Related: 10 Things We Love About the Porsche Cayman

7 Worst: 1990 Porsche 944

The 944 is a reasonably priced classic Porsche. Back in the 80s, the Porsche 944 was a really cool coupe, but since the end of that decade it has been forgotten for many reasons, especially mechanically. First, when there is an air leak at the manifold gasket, the 1990 Porsche 944 engine skips.

Also, owners of the 1990 Porsche 944 complain that the drive shaft bearings are getting noisy. There are also issues with the thermostat that you may face. These issues make many Porsche fanboys prefer the 911.

6 Best: 2016 Porsche Panamera S

The Porsche Panamera is a perfect mix of a sports car and a luxury sedan, so it’s fast, focused and furious. Despite the powerful driving dynamics of the 2016 Panamera, it is just as spacious as the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. While the 2016 Panamera hasn’t gone through any significant changes, it’s still a formidable competitor to the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupé and Benz CLS class.

The 2016 Panamera S, which you can get for just $48,000, runs on a 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 that delivers 420 horses and 384 lb-ft of torque. Porsche estimates that the RWD Panamera S can reach 100 km/h in just 4.9 seconds.

5 Worst: 2017 Porsche Macan

The Porsche Macan is essentially a “junior Cayenne” because it is more compact and costs less. The Macan feels athletic when pushed hard, and quite practical, but it’s best you don’t overlook the engine and interior issues.

While Consumer Reports scored the 2015 and 2016 model years very low on reliability, the 2017 iteration appears to be the most problematic, with five recalls and mechanical issues. RepairPal the 2017 Macan scored 1.5 out of 5 in terms of reliability and the average annual repair cost is about $1,265.

Related: 15 Surprising Facts About the Porsche Macan

4 Best: 2010 Porsche 997

After the many problems that plagued the 996, Porsche introduced the 997 in 2004 with major updates inside and out. The 2010 Porsche 997 Carrera offers responsive handling and firm grip, better than almost any sports car out there.

A used 2010 Porsche 911 997 Carrera cost $48,000, but with its driver-oriented interior and sparkling acceleration, you get value for every dollar spent. The 2010 997 Carrera Coupé is powered by a 3.6-liter six-cylinder engine that produces 345 horsepower and 288 lb-ft of torque.

3 Worst: 2000 Porsche 996

The illustrious history of the Porsche 911 dates back to the early 1960s, and it checked all the boxes of what made a great sports car. But the 996 generation, which spanned from 1997 to 2006, stands out as inferior and should be avoided. A common 996 problem you may encounter is a coolant leak, which is usually due to a cracked cylinder liner.

In an effort to reduce production costs, Porsche used an insert-molding casting in the cylinder liner, but the liner begins to crack when the engine vibrates. Having a cracked cylinder head is another problem you don’t want to experience. This one 2000 Porsche 996 owner recounts his ordeal with a cracked cylinder.

Related: This Is Why The Porsche 996 911 Was Universally Hated

2 Best: 1986 Porsche 928 S

Porsche designed the 928 to replace the 911, but it eventually played a different role. With an energetic V8, four seats and a more comfortable and practical design, the Porsche 928 S is very different from its rear-mounted brethren. In fact, the Porsche 928 was a Hollywood star in the ’80s as it was featured in several classic big screen hits, including “Risky Business” and “Weird Science”.

The 928 S4 was one of the fastest naturally aspirated production cars in the 1980s, so it served as a poster for many sports enthusiasts’ dream cars. You can neatly used 1986 Porsche 928 S for only $49,000

1 Worst: 2004 Porsche Cayenne

The Porsche Cayenne is generally a good SUV, especially if you look at the latest versions. But like many vehicles, it is far from perfect and if there is a model year you should steer clear of 2004. The recurring problem with the 2004 Cayenne has to do with coolant leakage. Porsche used plastic coolant lines for the 2004 Cayenne, so when the engine gets hot, the plastic melts, causing coolant to leak.

Porsche has failed to address this coolant line, which also affects the 2011 and 2012 model years. This has led to Cayenne customers file class-action lawsuit against Porsche† Porsche dealers suggest owners of a 2004 Cayenne should install an aluminum pipe instead of the plastic, but that will cost about $3,500, which the manufacturer won’t cover.