The first car I bought in any Gran Turismo game was a red Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution II in GT2. I loved that car so much. In GT1 my first car was a Skyline GTS, then was the R32 GTR then the flag ship of my GT1 career, the R33 GTR RM. At least until I got my FTO LM.
I was starting with cars from licenses, but the first one I bought was NSX, which was a legendary car, and a legendary mistake to buy one. It was undrivable without analog accelerator. When I put out more power into it, it was even worse. Slicks weren't helping much.
Very first time I played it I got the MA70 Supra, despite being as heavy as a small whale it had a lot of guts and could become very fast with just a few mods. Used to love the noticeable burst of acceleration that could be achieved by just a stage one weight reduction and a carbon propeller shaft!
Later on I read somewhere the RX-7 (savannah?) was best. I tried it and it was good but by then that Supra had already ingrained itself in my heart as THE go to car when starting. Then next stop, VIPER for normal car cup and then world domination began.
So I started a new game after about 18 months of playing almost no GT at all.
Took me a while to come to grips with the game. I wanted to get IA-8 before doing anything else.
So in occasional experimenting, I am beginning to think the occasionally available Creek Blue Mica Mazda Eunos Cosmo 13B Type S CCS might truly be the best starter car.
Its stats are comparable to the Toyota MA70 Supra, but it's a lot better behaved. It seems to have extra traction stock, compared to the Silvia, for instance. And it very easily negotiates the tight far turns of the Autumn Ring Mini. And can dash through the GVE tunnel, but stop quickly for the far-end turn. Even in my skill-diminished state it could win the Sunday Cup in stock form.
Not only is it easy and fun, it also tunes almost to top-level. (Back when I was familiar with the game, I won the Hard-Tuned Series with it, though not by a convincing margin).
The handling seems almost absurdly good and predicable, and easy to recover. Like the programmers didn't have the time to add slight quirks like they had for the MA70 Supra or Silvia.
Honda CR-X del Sol SiR. But I'll probably remember the '97 NSX Type S Zero more because I wanted one so badly, but I was sort of 6 at the time and didn't have the l33t 5k1llz to get enough money to afford it. Which is why I've made it a specific point to buy it in every game since.
1989 Nissan Skyline GT-S in gunmetal grey. It was the car that started my passion for Skylines. The first thing I remember realizing was "damn, the GT-R version sure is expensive... I hope it's worth saving money for."
.... and I found out, didn't I? Ever since, any R-32 I ever purchased in a Gran Turismo game had to be gun grey metallic in color. It was my signature car.
Never got rid of that GT-S though. Tuned the living daylights out of it and won tons of races with it too.