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Help me buy an MX5

Discussion in 'Motors' started by Lighters, 5 Apr 2021.

  1. Lighters

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 11 Jun 2006

    Posts: 1,523

    By all means please do. 100% certain on getting one and it does seem to sick all boxes just a bit higher than I'm wanting to spend.

    Auto Trader values at £3.7k but dont want to go in looking like I'm not serious or low balling especially as hes got it at £5k. Plus advice is buy on condition and service but looking around the MK3 arent as rare as I thought.

    Others I'm currently considering around similar price range.
    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202104010864243?model=MX-5&exclude-writeoff-categories=on&postcode=ne83nq&radius=200&include-delivery-option=on&sort=price-asc&advertising-location=at_cars&make=MAZDA&onesearchad=New&onesearchad=Nearly New&onesearchad=Used&zero-to-60=TO_8&page=2
    The most serious contender at £4250 higher mileage but does look very clean. Dealer

    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202104040974145?model=MX-5&zero-to-60=TO_8&advertising-location=at_cars&postcode=ne83nq&radius=200&sort=price-asc&exclude-writeoff-categories=on&make=MAZDA&include-delivery-option=on&onesearchad=New&onesearchad=Nearly New&onesearchad=Used&page=1
    Higher mileage, few more mods on car but does have arch rust. £4000

    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202101057662552?postcode=ne83nq&advertising-location=at_cars&include-delivery-option=on&zero-to-60=TO_8&radius=200&model=MX-5&sort=price-asc&exclude-writeoff-categories=on&make=MAZDA&onesearchad=New&onesearchad=Nearly New&onesearchad=Used&page=2
    3 years newer and higher mileage and admittedly not as clean but around £4000 from dealer.

    Edit - Would consider MR2.

    Derek - Will consider the NC facelift - especially as theres not too much difference in price but feel I'm already doing the typical list price increase.

    This one is newer, good mileage but 7000.
    http://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202104050988160?atmobcid=soc3

    Another example high mileage but SE so not heated seats and not sure if it has the other toys.
    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202012076857476?postcode=ne83nq&advertising-location=at_cars&include-delivery-option=on&zero-to-60=TO_8&radius=200&model=MX-5&sort=price-asc&exclude-writeoff-categories=on&make=MAZDA&onesearchad=New&onesearchad=Nearly New&onesearchad=Used&page=2 £4000 tho!

    Higher mileage and dealer but only £6000 and 2010.
    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202103150179354?model=MX-5&zero-to-60=TO_8&advertising-location=at_cars&exclude-writeoff-categories=on&postcode=ne83nq&radius=200&sort=price-asc&onesearchad=New&onesearchad=Nearly New&onesearchad=Used&make=MAZDA&include-delivery-option=on&page=4

    £8000+ but 2012
    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-de...ising-location=at_cars&zero-to-60=TO_8&page=4

    As I said I have went from 2-5-8k but then the car is 6 years newer.
    Its all about bang per buck really.

    Was looking to spend £2.5k when I seen the one that sold and then this one at £5k which is slightly more than I expected but then newer/more car for an 08 etc.
     
    Last edited: 6 Apr 2021
  2. Delta3D

    Hitman

    Joined: 16 Apr 2014

    Posts: 769

    Location: Durham, UK

    Have asked my friend regarding this, will let you know. Not sure if you want to trust me your mobile number and I will text you any updates? :)

    From memory it is certainly a very clean example!
     
  3. Conscript

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 18 Oct 2004

    Posts: 9,825

    Location: Kent

    The red example in your first post looks in good nick. However, I do feel like it's perhaps a tad optimistically priced. Admittedly I haven't kept an eye on the market since, but I think I paid 5.5k for the same car, a 2006 2.0l NC, almost exactly 10 years ago.

    It wasn't as pristine example as that red one, but it was in good condition, FSH, etc. And the NC was never really as popular or desirable as the earlier cars, so I wouldnt expect them to have only dropped 500 quid in a decade.
     
  4. tom_nieto

    Capodecina

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 11,208

    Location: Birmingham

    A <£5k boxster could be a world of pain. I think you’d realistically almost double your budget before really considering one.
     
  5. tom_nieto

    Capodecina

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 11,208

    Location: Birmingham

    £5000 in 2010 is roughly £6500 in today’s money.
     
  6. SkodaMart

    Mobster

    Joined: 27 Jul 2009

    Posts: 4,173

    Location: Manchester

    Agree.
     
  7. Lighters

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 11 Jun 2006

    Posts: 1,523

    This is exactly why I dont mind upping my budget for the right example.
    Will happily get a MK3.5 or MK3.75 or even MK4 if good example and will hold its value or not have to potentially put up with expensive bills.

    Equally feel the £5k one is expensive at auto trader puts it at 3.7k

    MK1 / 2 probably arent considerations as I feel girlfriend would find them too rough / old.
     
  8. Conscript

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 18 Oct 2004

    Posts: 9,825

    Location: Kent

    True, I hadn't even thought about inflation, purely because it feels so recent in my mind! :(
    Maybe ignore my comparison though. Still feels like you'd be able to negotiate a fair bit off that though.

    As for the car itself, I can only say my experience was pretty much nothing but positive. Very reliable in the 2.5 years I owned it, and cheap running costs. Nothing particularly exotic about it, so servicing and consumables were cheap.
     
  9. Nasher

    Capodecina

    Joined: 22 Nov 2006

    Posts: 19,906

    Pristine MK1s and 2s can fetch more, they are quicker and lighter too. The mk3 isn't considered the best generation.
     
  10. Lighters

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 11 Jun 2006

    Posts: 1,523

    I did consider a boxster and even boxter S but the potential running cost put me off and no mechanical experience.
    I thought about the potential of them increasing in value but reading owners history seems like they can throw a few big bills and if I wanted to retain value then I would have to spend money. I then dont want so much tied up in something I will use very little.
    MX5 for 90% of experience at road legal speeds seems the no brainer.

    Nasher - I might have to try them but lack of heated seats and outdated might put the girlfriend off a little.

    I might have to drive them!

    Similar to what I said above, if good example and bang for buck then will consider anything but off reading the mk1 / 2 seem to be more raw experience and not as safe.
     
  11. wesimmo

    Soldato

    Joined: 19 Mar 2012

    Posts: 5,534

    Rust is the problem.

    Most other things are cheaply and easily replaceable.

    Learn how to inspect the chassis rails and other known rust spots and make sure it's not rotten is the number 1 priority.

    Mine was so bad the chassis rails literally snapped.

    The problem you have is they rot from the inside, so often if you can see rust, its already gone inside.
     
  12. SkodaMart

    Mobster

    Joined: 27 Jul 2009

    Posts: 4,173

    Location: Manchester

    Quite happy with my Z4, but the rides ridiculous. Even a cats eye is jarring and I’m not on runflats either.
    Z4s are the polar opposite of MX5s, the body is excellent but they break - a lot.
    (Edit: or require lots of preventative maintenance).
    I’ve been utterly horrified reading the MOT histories of apparently clean cars I’ve seen for sale. If you can’t do at least a bit yourself it’s hard to recommend one especially as the more desirable cars are starting to increase in value.
     
  13. Lighters

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 11 Jun 2006

    Posts: 1,523

    Slight update
    https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/263018861895271/?ref=facebook_story_share
    Owner only done 2k each year over past 5 years and serviced 4x within that period.
    Update - No evidence of FULL service history (It likely has been serviced but no evidence between 2011-2015 and missing 2017,2019-2021 (Owner has said he took word of previous owner and did it all himself which I believe but thinking about price and resale as no evidence)

    Peoples thoughts on this considering its priced higher than the auto trader 3.7k value?
     
  14. SkodaMart

    Mobster

    Joined: 27 Jul 2009

    Posts: 4,173

    Location: Manchester

    Check the brakes on summer cars.
    A lot I’ve seen are terrible due to being stood for months.
    I replaced all 4 discs, pads and front callipers last summer.
    My cars a 2008
     
    Last edited: 6 Apr 2021
  15. wesimmo

    Soldato

    Joined: 19 Mar 2012

    Posts: 5,534

    I had an NB Sport, which is what I'd go for, but can appreciate the age might put people off.

    However it did come with heated leather seats if that's something you wanted.

    The thing with NBs and NAs is that they've hit the bottom of the depreciation curve and if you got a nice one, you'd possibly make money.

    NCs are just now starting to get to the point that people are looking at them seriously as donor cars for Exocets, they're starting to rust badly and you can pick them up for cheap, but there are still lots of decent ones out there so I'd see the price dropping a little more.
     
  16. Lighters

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 11 Jun 2006

    Posts: 1,523

    Think I will consider MK1/2 but 3 seemed be be the balance from reading. Quickest with comforts and toys and safety.

    That said I converted garage to gym so it will be outside during the winter and be used so can't see it maintaining value.

    It will do low mileage tho and I always take care of my car's.
     
  17. wesimmo

    Soldato

    Joined: 19 Mar 2012

    Posts: 5,534

    I'd drive both, personally I prefer the NB because it's a bit less refined than the NC, much like I prefer the Clio 1*2s over my Clio 200.

    With a decent underseal and regular drainage hole maintenance you can daily an MX5 all year, I did.

    There's something special about a sunny winters day with snow on the ground, heated seats, heaters that can melt steel and the roof down.

    Edit: In fact, I might see if I can get enough for the Clio for this, the hard top alone is a few hundred back if you dont want that.

    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-details/202104050993113
     
  18. SkodaMart

    Mobster

    Joined: 27 Jul 2009

    Posts: 4,173

    Location: Manchester

  19. SKILL

    Soldato

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 5,936

    Location: Melksham

    I picked up a 2006 2.0 Sport back in 2018, love the car but definitely make sure you get one that's been looked after (or a facelift)...

    Mine was cheap and had no history whatsoever, I knew the risks but decided it was worth it, it wasn't :p It never broke down, as in I could drive it home knocking away, but it spun a bigend bearing and needed a rebuilt/refurbished engine put in.

    Since then though, touch wood, it's been perfect. It does (and did on the old engine) burn/use a bit of oil but I keep it topped up and even with me thrashing it, including starting trackdays, it hasn't missed a beat.

    One thing I like about the NC basic soft top is being able to put the roof up/down whilst moving, you're not really supposed to but <30mph is fine. I think the NB and definitely the NA have clips either side of the roof making it more awkward, the NC is a single clip in the middle :)
     
  20. visibleman

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 3 Jun 2005

    Posts: 1,698

    Location: The South

    As @DereksDontRun and others have said, look at a NC2/MK3.5 (2008>) or a NC3/MK3.75 (2013>) as there were a fair number of changes to the exterior, interior and engine from the NC2 (http://www.roadster.blog/2013/08/the-2009-roadsters-facelift.html) onwards. The NC3 was mostly cosmetic.

    Rust is your biggest issue and it's typically the sills, arches and usual bubbling. It can all be fixed but it's a big job so worth hunting out a clean example. Otherwise they're fairly reliable, just as long as you keep it regularly serviced and fluids topped up (important on 2.0).

    Common areas on MX5 NC for leaks are edges within the boot, under the seats (towards the rear) and within the footwells in particular as the scuttle panel seals fail (cheap fix but a little fiddly).

    If it's a PRHT (powered hard top), check for signs of perished seals all around the roof and make sure it fully works as it's an expensive fix.

    Ideally opt for a full service history but don't worry if it's not on Mazda's DSRC (digital platform) as not all garages/specialists have access to it.
    If it's 5/60k+ miles, make sure it's a had a major service (including transmission oils) and if it's nearing 100k or 10+ years (likely), then make sure belts have been done.
    Worth noting the 2.0 uses NGK spark plugs (or OE Mazda; which are rebranded NGK i believe) and not Denso, which some parts suppliers list and are cheaper (NGK's are around £15 per plug for the 2.0).

    If getting a model with the Bilstein's fitted, then note they're Mazda's own design which have a known and common issue with the valving where they will weep around the seals. This is an MOT failure and Mazda charge ~£200+VAT (each) for OE replacements.
    However, Bilstein B6's are a direct swap, no real difference in ride height or firmness, better in every way and they're half the price.

    If you care about the radio, the (NC) Bose system isn't too bad but the Sanyo (NC2) and Alpine (NC3) units fitted in some specials, whilst sound fine, are utter crap in terms of operation and i regularly have issues (freezing, lock-ups) with my Sanyo. Luckily these two are double-din units, so it's an easy swap; the Bose requires a faceplate.
    None of them support Bluetooth audio; Bluetooth calls are absolutely pointless due to the location of the mic (usually down by your cutch leg).

    MX5Parts has a good buyers guide (https://www.mx5parts.co.uk/information/mk3-buyers-guide-checklist/) but it's worth visiting the various forums, MX5OC and Miata.net are my go to, and just have a read around.
    And it's worth look at the UK model list - http://www.roadster.blog/2014/03/uk-mx-5-model-guide.html.

    And well worth hunting out your local MX5 specialist as dealers charge an arm and my local is absolutely ****. Plenty out there but I use Sam Goodwin (midlands), lovely bloke and he's roughly half the price. Wouldn't recommend the one near Leighton Buzzard.

    And look at getting a "fast road" wheel alignment, from the likes of Wheels in Motion, as it makes a massive improvement over the standard geo.

    There's plenty of cons to a MX5, they're "nippy" (kind-of-ish) but not fast in any way, paint and metal are thin so scratches and dings are common (picked up two this week from arsehats in their **** box SUV's) and potholes become a serious chore. But they're amazing down a quiet A or B road with the roof down :cool:

    Saying that, if i was to buy another i'd throw another £10k in and opt for a ND RF as it's a better car in every way.