For a long time, those who took cars seriously defined a sports car in basically the following terms: Front engine, rear wheel drive, two seats, stick shift, convertible. From the Miata and the old British roadsters on the one end, to the Corvette, Jaguar E-Type, and Mercedes SL's on the other. Them are sports cars. Driving a sports car required not only the ability to make it go, but to make it go FAST (relatively speaking) on a road course by optimizing the power and torque of the engine (shifting gears manually), utilizing oversteer to assist in cornering, managing the deceleration as well as the acceleration of the car for the best overall "lap times," and so forth. The lone exception to the accepted sports car definition was the Porsche 911 (and later Boxter), which had the engine behind the rear wheels and two back seats. Sort of. Drivers of the 911 had to have a whole additional set of skills and knowledge to optimize race-course performance, because the tail-heavy car could easily be wrapped around a utility pole due to uncontrolled oversteer. But it was clearly a sports car, despite the unconventional layout. The advent of the Mustang brought about a new class - the "sporty" car. Not actually a sports car, but similarly themed and having four seats, it was more or less brought into the fold by the IROC and similar racing series, where they proved themselves very able cars, if not pure sports cars. But now technology is taking over. Traction control, stability control, and anti-lock brake systems have dramatically "civilized" the Porsche 911, to the point where, if you can merely point & shoot the car, you can obtain performance comparable to what the best drivers of yesteryear were able to accomplish. Other sports cars also benefit from these innovations, but there is something worse now. Today's automatic transmissions, when coupled with ultra-sophisticated computer mapping, can drive better than almost any human driver, squeezing incredible performance out of every HP. And some are even offering 4WD (or AWD, if you prefer). WTF? I don't think you can even BUY a Ferrari or top-end German sports car with a stick anymore. Jag? Aston Martin? Even the Japanese are in on it. You can't get a new Acura NSX with a stick. I think you can still get a GTR with a stick, but good luck finding one without a slush box. A car with all this electronic garbage is an APPLIANCE, regardless of what the Marketing types want you to believe. What's next? Driving with a joy stick?