Ten Cars That Are Only Good Modified

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These cars left the factory with so much potential just waiting to be unlocked.

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10.) DeLorean DMC-12

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The DeLorean looked cool as hell from stock, but that was all it had going for it. You need to do what Matt Farah did and have it rebuilt by the new DeLorean Motor Company. Then your DMC-12 can become the car it always deserved to be.

Suggested By: Kate's Dirty Sister, Photo Credit: Ian Weddell


9.) Porsche 914

Illustration for article titled Ten Cars That Are Only Good Modified

A great mid-engined chassis in need of more horsepower and grip. In stock form, it's a race car waiting to happen.

Suggested By: Patrick Frawley, Photo Credit: Nathan Bittenger


8.) Pontiac Fiero

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GM killed the Fiero before it ever achieved greatness, but thankfully today there's the aftermarket fix that. When done right, it can make a hell of a track car.

Suggested By: dr861, Photo Credit: Grant.C


7.) Smart ForTwo

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The Smart ForTwo is a fine city car, but there's a lot of potential in this tiny rear-engined RWD chassis. Modifications can be as simple as putting in wider tires, or as crazy as swapping in a Hayabusa engine.

Suggested By: Arch Duke Makyenko, SHAZAM!, Photo Credit: Norio Nakayama


6.) Mitsubishi Eclipse/Eagle Talon

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Let's face facts – you're not going to blow anyone's doors off with a stock Eclipse. But with capable AWD potential and lots of room for EVO parts, all you need to do is add power to live out your Fast and Furious fantasies.

Suggested By: nermal, Photo Credit: Wiros


5.) AC Ace

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Ah, the car that defined the trend of "just swap a V8 in it! That'll fix all your problems." The diminutive British Ace was gorgeous, but needed the help of Carol Shelby to make it the legend that it is.

Suggested By: Spacegrass, Photo Credit: Nathan Bittinger


4.) Jeep Wrangler

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Wrangler's are fine stock, but the real fun starts when you lift them and put them on some bigger tires. Then you can take them off the street.

Suggested By: High Road, Photo Credit: Jason Weaver


3.) Toyota AE86

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From the factory, the AE86 was by no means the Initial D drift machine you imagined it to be. It just needs a little help to go sideways.

Suggested By: burglar can't heart click anything, Photo Credit: James Willamor


2.) Any Malaise Era V8 American Car

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Any 1970s American car with an emissions-saddled V8 is just one LS swap from greatness.

Suggested By: McSeanerson, Photo Credit: order_242


1.) Nissan 240SX

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There's a good reason why there isn't a single stock 240SX left in the world. It's got a nice rear-wheel drive chassis, but the engine simply doesn't do it justice. It's dying for an engine swap.

Suggested By: foxbody, Photo Credit: Alex V

Welcome back to Answers of the Day - our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!

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Top Photo Credit: Matt Conaghan

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DISCUSSION

BiPolarWithCars
BiPolarWithCars

I'm calling 100% BS on the Wrangler. This is coming from a guy who started with a 1971 CJ5 with the 225 "Dauntless" V6 and a full floater D44 out back, then transitioned into 2 TJs, and is now rocking around in a JKUR. My Jeeps get dirty then they get clean. I've got plenty of rock scrapes and thumps to beat the "mall crawler" image anyway.

Are Wranglers better off road when modified? Sure, if done correctly. However, the Wrangler is amazingly capable right out of the box, even the base models, so often the only mod that is needed is to get some better tires on there. Mods aren't needed to have a great time off road.

Additionally, mods usually decrease on-road performance and almost always decrease safety. I would imagine 99.5% of miles on Wranglers take place off road, so this is a major factor to consider.

You know what the best thing about a Wrangler is, however? The top down, doors off cruise through town. You wanna make your drive to work better? Get a Wrangler and get those doors off. You wanna make grocery getting better? Get a Wrangler and get those doors off.

Since the Wrangler is as much about in-town top down, doors off cruising as it is about off-roading and you really don't need mods to do that, the Wrangler doesn't need mods to be a great vehicle.