Top 3 Beginner Drift Cars


If you’re gonna join the world of smoking wheels, engine squeals – you have to get the right car. If you’re looking to become the next Keiichi Tsuchiya also known as ‘Drift King’, having the right car is one of the most important things to consider when you first start.

Of course, buying a new car is not cheap, and you must account for the cost of changing your wheels (which you will have to do a lot!). So we have found the gold from the old cars that you could get to save you from selling your car just to buy a drift car. These cars are comparatively affordable and still have a good value in the car market.

In no specific order, here we go…

1. Nissan 350Z

With the power of 287 bhp @ 6,200 rpm, this one is a great steal if you find it at the right resale value in your community. It has a top speed of 155 mph and goes from 0-60 in a matter of 5.5, rear-wheel drive, and a perfect front engine for squealing those tires. Even if you have the stock model, it is fairly great to start with.

This car was released in 2003 and gained popularity with its extremely good looks and style. There are some tweaks and adjustments you can make to this chassis to maximize it’s drifting potential.

Possible Modifiers:


New Exhaust

Cold-air intake system

2. Mazda RX-7 FD3S

The third generation FD3S, with its immaculate shape and design is arguably the best body that ever escaped a Japanese garage. Beauty in design and beast in speed, it can go up to 161 mph and goes from 0-60 in a dash in less than 5 seconds.

The most desirable of these series are the Series 8 cars that come with the most desirable updates in terms of interior, exterior.

If you find someone that wants to sell this beauty, they probably have had an engine rebuilt. Which is good, because we all know we’re gonna be beating on the car!

A couple of things you would have to be careful about, like fuel economy and heat generation. And that is most likely gonna make you take more frequent trips to the garage.

But all in all, for the price and the right upgrades – it is a real fine drift car.

Possible Upgrades

  • Boost controller
  • Fuel pump
  • Exhaust

3. Nissan Skyline R33 GTS-T

You didn’t think we were gonna exhaust this list without a Skyline, did you?

It has a top speed of 165 mph and gets from 0-60 in 6.7 seconds with power that is fed through a 5-speed manual transmission and great customization ability.

You’ve seen this bad boy with the street experts already and you’ll be happy to know that it’s a great beginner car to start with. Although it can’t aesthetically compete with its counterparts, the R32 & R34, the former more popular and the latter better with performance – the R33 makes a great drift car and is very affordable and you would be lucky if you find someone willing to sell it. You see, the value of the car is great for its drifting functionality.

The stock version is a little heavy, but like all the other cars mentioned, this one can also use some upgrades and weight savings. The one downside is that it has legal complications if you’re trying to import this car in the US.

Recommended Upgrades

  • Improved Cooling
  • Suspension setup
  • Bigger Turbo

Final Comments

When you’re a beginner, always start with practicing safely in the presence of an expert in empty spots.

Now that you’ve seen our top 3 picks, you can go ahead and find the car you want. As you can see, since we were budget-conscious, we have chosen Japanese makes. But feel free to go ahead with other makes if you have the budget.

For example, the Volvo 340, another great car and a great mention in all honesty but it is comparatively harder to find and upgrades may cost more. Your first drift car shouldn’t have you break your bank – it should be rather stress-free so you can keep smoking the streets, with precaution, of course.