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Thread: Soon to be NA owner!

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Decatur
    Posts
    6,957

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    I wasn't the first person to say it, I think it was Metalman, but the most important consideration when buying a miata is the condition of the body. Why? Because a quality respray will cost you $3000+, but still won't be as valuable as a car with great original paint. Engines can be had for less than $1000, and transmissions for $150, everything just bolts in and out, but body work is the most expensive thing you can do to a miata. If you've decided to buy an NB because you love it, great, but be aware that while NA prices are on the rise, NB prices are still dropping. The only NB I'd consider buying would be an MSM. Those cars are in a sweet spot, having the zenith of development of the original chassis and engine, while reaching a price point that makes them a bargain. A good sub 100,000 mile MSM, is now in the $6000 range. Pretty good for a car that can make 200 whp for just a few hundred dollars in mods.

    NA's are an appreciating asset now. As such it behooves you to buy the very best one you can find. Don't get overly hung up on miles, as super low mileage cars come with a host of problems related to having sat for long periods of time. If you can find one with 60-130,000 miles, with good maintenance records and a clean body, that's the one you want. On the low end I'd say expect to pay $3500, while the very best limited editions are getting $8000 plus. A note on the limited editions: Mazda loved making them. Only a very few actually are appreciating any faster than a non LE of the same year. The 91 British Racing Green ( the first LE), and the 93 LE with its black paint, and one year only red interior stand out. Other colors that will cost extra, include the unpopular at the time 92 Sunburst yellow cars, and 94' & 95' only Laguna blue. Mostly the LE's are nice because you know they came with all the options, including the desirable Torsen lsd, after 94', the 90-93's had an available viscous lsd. As a rule if the car has power windows and leather, it also has an lsd. Beware the STO edition, a pretty color, but it's the exception to the LE's having the Torsen, causing some to quip, STO. Stands for some things taken off.

    Keep your eyes open here, and ask as you did for help looking into cars you might be interested in. Using the forum to help research prior to purchase is a very smart move that very few people think of. Good luck!
    Red '91, MSM longblock/BEGI-FM hybrid turbo w/2871r/3"Enthuza/Hydra2.7/700cc/Ohlins/
    RacingBrake11"BBK/SS HDDD/Nakamae everything/KGWorks/Zoom/We're done!

  2. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldgrayfrog View Post
    I wasn't the first person to say it, I think it was Metalman, but the most important consideration when buying a miata is the condition of the body. Why? Because a quality respray will cost you $3000+, but still won't be as valuable as a car with great original paint. Engines can be had for less than $1000, and transmissions for $150, everything just bolts in and out, but body work is the most expensive thing you can do to a miata. If you've decided to buy an NB because you love it, great, but be aware that while NA prices are on the rise, NB prices are still dropping. The only NB I'd consider buying would be an MSM. Those cars are in a sweet spot, having the zenith of development of the original chassis and engine, while reaching a price point that makes them a bargain. A good sub 100,000 mile MSM, is now in the $6000 range. Pretty good for a car that can make 200 whp for just a few hundred dollars in mods.

    NA's are an appreciating asset now. As such it behooves you to buy the very best one you can find. Don't get overly hung up on miles, as super low mileage cars come with a host of problems related to having sat for long periods of time. If you can find one with 60-130,000 miles, with good maintenance records and a clean body, that's the one you want. On the low end I'd say expect to pay $3500, while the very best limited editions are getting $8000 plus. A note on the limited editions: Mazda loved making them. Only a very few actually are appreciating any faster than a non LE of the same year. The 91 British Racing Green ( the first LE), and the 93 LE with its black paint, and one year only red interior stand out. Other colors that will cost extra, include the unpopular at the time 92 Sunburst yellow cars, and 94' & 95' only Laguna blue. Mostly the LE's are nice because you know they came with all the options, including the desirable Torsen lsd, after 94', the 90-93's had an available viscous lsd. As a rule if the car has power windows and leather, it also has an lsd. Beware the STO edition, a pretty color, but it's the exception to the LE's having the Torsen, causing some to quip, STO. Stands for some things taken off.

    Keep your eyes open here, and ask as you did for help looking into cars you might be interested in. Using the forum to help research prior to purchase is a very smart move that very few people think of. Good luck!
    Thanks for the great perspective! I honestly hadn't thought of things in that way -- with the body being the most important part. I am definitely leaning more towards an NA. Really would love something other than red, just because they're a little more unique. I'll definitely keep my eyes open here -- really I'm leaning towards only looking local (just due to how time consuming it can be out of state), or in Atlanta, since I know now I can fully trust RSpeed. Those guys went above and beyond for me, taking videos and everything.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    North East Ga
    Posts
    218

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    you'd have to look at it to make sure everything is tip top but here is a VERY nice 93 le, that car if kept in good shape should only increase in value. If you want a miata for its looks this to me would be what I'd go after

    https://greenville.craigslist.org/cto/5983798758.html
    1997 mx-5

  4. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shwing View Post
    you'd have to look at it to make sure everything is tip top but here is a VERY nice 93 le, that car if kept in good shape should only increase in value. If you want a miata for its looks this to me would be what I'd go after

    https://greenville.craigslist.org/cto/5983798758.html
    I actually looked into this one last week. Thing that worries me is the rare red interior -- you can see he already has a dash cover due to a small crack. Seats also have covers with small tear -- my thought is it would be nearly impossible to replace these with factory dash and seats if I ever wanted to...and my thought is the value might go down with more wear and tear on the red stuff. That being said, I take extremely good care of my cars. Love the hard top and BBS rims. There are actually a few cars in Greenville, so might be worth me taking a drive since I have a 3 day weekend coming up.
    Last edited by captainstevo; 02-17-2017 at 02:57 PM.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    North East Ga
    Posts
    218

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    Quote Originally Posted by captainstevo View Post
    I actually looked into this one last week. Thing that worries me is the rare red interior -- you can see he already has a dash cover due to a small crack. Seats also have covers with small tear -- my thought is it would be nearly impossible to replace these with factory dash and seats if I ever wanted to...and my thought is the value might go down with more wear and tear on the red stuff. That being said, I take extremely good care of my cars. Love the hard top and BBS rims. There are actually a few cars in Greenville, so might be worth me taking a drive since I have a 3 day weekend coming up.
    you can still get them for now but they do command a premium but at least you can still find them and i dont know what it is about greenville and that area but there have been a ton of awesome cars popping up around there, hell thats where i went two weeks ago to get my msm miata
    1997 mx-5

  6. #26

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    Getting more detail pics of the car today and will share any updates. Sounds like a clean car, just a little bit of hail damage on the trunk lid. He also said the front bumper has a slight bit of a deformity where the front license plate used to be, but he has heard that this can be overcome by heating the bumper up and reforming?

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    Greenville, SC
    Posts
    482

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    Quote Originally Posted by captainstevo View Post
    front bumper has a slight bit of a deformity where the front license plate used to be, but he has heard that this can be overcome by heating the bumper up and reforming?
    When I had my shop, I used to pull the bumpers off and do this, it is very time consuming, something like 6-8 hours of heat and cooling, along with a few body spoons and such. Heat it too much, damage the paint, heat it too little, and the bumpers "memory" with the indentations will come back a day or two later. Again, it can be done, but it will take time and money. Still, as I said on Miata net "A fender replacement is not uncommon, but a check for rust is still in order, that and the much brighter seat covers, sash covered, no pictures of the convertible top (hardtop is an instant $1,000 rebate when you sell it) but I like the fact that the owner kept the original parts. I've owned a few 93LE's and I regret selling at least two of them, great car, a one year only offering, and the best of the early and later NA's wrapped up all in one. HP Motors in Pelzer, SC can do a PPI on that one I'm sure. " Of course no mention of the hail damage, which would require a closer look at the rest of the car for additional bodywork and/or paint...Yet still, with all of that, it is a 93LE. I'd offer to go look at it (a little over an hour away), but would be worried I'd want to buy it

    Bill S.
    Instead of being part of the problem, why not be a part of a successful solution

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