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“Handles like a go kart.” Possibly the most incorrect, misused phrase in all of car-dom. If you ever see that line an auto review, find the author and slap them.

While it’s ostensibly used to describe a car that’s small and handles well, the truth is very few street cars — if any — actually handle like go karts. Mini uses it a lot in their ads and promotional materials. I own a Cooper S, it’s a sharp-handling little front-drive hatchback, but a go kart it ain’t.

If anything, the closest you can get to go kart-like handling on a street legal vehicle might be the Lotus/Caterham Seven and its many derivatives. Even then, the engine’s up front, while most go karts have them at the back.

Are there any cars that really offer go kart-like handling?


Contact the author at patrick@jalopnik.com.