Used Car of the Year Awards 2022: Performance cars
With demand for used cars on the rise, you’ll want to know which are the best buys. That’s where our annual Used Car Awards come in. These are our favourite performance cars...
Price from £70,000
If you’re after one last fossil fuel hurrah before we all make the switch to electric vehicles, look no further than the E63. In 603bhp S guise, its twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 petrol engine makes the most exhilarating noise while pumping out mind-blowing performance like that of many supercars.
As with its BMW M5 rival, a clever four-wheel drive system helps to deploy all that power cleanly, making the E63 safe and secure in any conditions, yet it can be decoupled to make the car rear-wheel drive only if you want have a bit more fun – something the E63 is supremely good at. For such a hot rod, it’s surprisingly agile and involving.
On top of all that, the E63 comes as a saloon and practical estate. Both have plenty of space inside, and the estate’s boot can take up to 10 carry-on suitcases.
Initially, there were two versions of the E63, but the less powerful one was dropped, leaving just the E63 S that most buyers preferred. You’re looking at around £70,000 to get one now.That’s pricier than an equivalent RS6 or M5 Competition, but it’s worth the outlay; the E63 is far more of an event to drive.
One we found: 2019 Mercedes-AMG E63 S Estate, 12,000 miles Price £70,000
Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
While the E63 delivers sheer brutish performance, the Quadrifoglio could suit you if you want a more subtle fast saloon. Its twin-turbo 2.9-litre V6 petrol engine smashes the 0-62mph dash in 3.9sec and, while it’s not as plush inside as the E63, it is more affordable, starting at £39,000 for early cars. We’d pay £6000 more for a lower-mileage 2018 example.
One we found: 2018 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, 24,000 miles Price £45,000
The C43 is a cheaper alternative to its larger and louder E63 sibling. You can get a decent one for as little as £27,000 and, while it eschews a V8 in favour of a V6 engine, it’s still capable of sprinting past 62mph from rest in less than five seconds with the aid of four-wheel drive traction. A similarly powerful 2018 Audi S4 could be yours for an extra £1000 or so, but it’s hampered by a laggy gearbox that makes it less enjoyable to drive.
One we found: 2016 Mercedes-AMG C43, 54,000 miles Price £27,000
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