In the market for a fun weekend project? You can't go wrong with any of these.
If you want to drive something fun for the weekend but absolutely need a reliable daily-driver, you have to get yourself a Project Car. Here is a selection of vehicles that are cheap, easy to restore or modify, and should be a riot to drive.
For the drifter: Nissan 240SX
Yes, these are very common in the drift world, but there is a reason: there are a lot of these around, they are easy to work on, and their chassis is perfect for learning to slide around a track. Plus, the aftermarket support is huge.
Old-school muscle car on a budget: third-gen Chevy Camaro
Yes, the Camaros from the 60s are the sexiest, but good examples of the third-gen (1981-1992) can be had for a low price. You can stick with the basic V8 or stuff any other motor made by GM - from an LS to a big block - and then enjoy the muscle car experience.
For the Tuner Crowd: 2006-2011 Honda Civic Si
This little coupe might not be the fastest thing on the road, but, like every other Honda, it is resilient, stands up to abuse, and can be easily tuned for more power. Add a set of suspension and some good tires and it is surprisingly agile in the corners, too.
Classic truck: 1973-1987 GM truck
Not only are those trucks relatively easy to find in good condition, but they are also rapidly increasing in value. If you are looking for something you can work on and use as a work vehicle, look no further.
Mid-engined beauty: Porsche Boxster
The first-generation Porsche Boxster has depreciated hilariously. That's a bad thing for somebody who bought one new, but it's a great opportunity for bargain-hunters. Prices for parts aren't that bad, but be prepared to drop the engine for any serious maintenance work, however.
Track day special: Mazda Miata NB
While most people are looking for a clean first-gen Miata as a weekend roadster, the NB is objectively faster, more agile, and roomier. Plus, since they don't have pop-up headlights, they are much less expensive.
Off-roader: Jeep Cherokee XJ
Not only is this SUV one of the cheapest ways you can get into an off-road trail, it is also one of the most competent: even seasoned trail junkies can be found behind the wheel of these square Jeeps. Find one with a 4.0-liter inline-six for maximum solidity, and beware of structural rust.
Classic Japanese motoring: Datsun 280Z
One of the most beautiful Japanese cars ever built, the 240Z can command big bucks at auctions today. However, if you want something close to it for a fraction of the price, check out the 280Z - it isn't radically different and offers a bigger engine. What's not to like?
The peoples' car: Volkswagen Beetle
If outright speed isn't a concern, consider the VW Beetle. So many were built that you can score one for cheap, you can repair them using nothing more than a ball of string and a flathead screwdriver, and they will make everyone around you smile.
Modern muscle: SN95 Ford Mustang
Again, the SN95 isn't the most popular Mustang, but it has its merits. It can be had for cheap, it handles decently well, and the stock 4.6-liter V8 can handle up to 500 horsepower (373 kilowatts) without too many problems.