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Due to lack of money my time to buy a lot us is a few years outage I want something fun and convertible to get me by until I can finally afford one. Any opinions of the mazdaspeed miata's? Presently my daily driver is a Saab viggen and I would like to get something fun to go with it that I can take to work, take kids (1 at a time) to soccer and also take to the local roadcoarse.

I am going to put my buell 1125cr up for sale and can only spend about $12k max on the car. S2000's seem to be a few grand more and I can't think of another fun car that would let me drive it daily when weather permits and also to the track

Any opinions good or bad? I took one for a spin two days ago, $12k is what they stated they would sell it to me for and had about 70k miles. I thought the engine was completely gutless with no power.... (Kinda funny hearing the sales guy state how quick it is). It just seemed to have minimal torque and didn't really do much until 4-5k rpm's. Car felt good but it was a shrt drive....
 

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12k can get you a nice older boxster if you find a well cared for car or an mrs/mr2 with room for mods...


Miatas are great cars though and really are fun
 

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Can make about 220 whp with minor bolt ons. They are pretty quick in this state. Silly short gears though

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MSM is not a great car, the turbo is too small and restrictive. You can get a decent S2000 for 12K.
 

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The Mazdaspeed Miata is a great car, in my opinion. I've driven one for sale with low miles (30k ish) and found that it had reasonable power. More than a normal Miata, but not a ton. The seats were the best I've seen in any car ever comfort wise. They were only made for 2 years in very small numbers, so you may see them start to appreciate in value over the next few years, which would be nice if you're looking to retain value and upgrade to something else.

I've found that S2k's tend to fall into 2 categories. The cars that are immaculate and stock with low miles, garaged, never driven in rain for close to their original MSRP. Then the totally thrashed pieces of crap that should be parts cars. I've found nothing in between.
 

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I will second what Jack says - when I started looking at my "toy" car last year, the S2000 was on my short list, but every example I found fit his 2 categories: immaculate and $$$ or thrashed.

I passed on getting a Miata because frankly, I could afford more car than that - I do agree it is a fun drive though, (a couple of buddies have had them for ~10 years) and I also enjoy driving the Mazda in iRacing. ;)

Having said that - they are reasonably cheap to fix, easy to work on (unless you have huge meaty arms) and will probably be fun while you save your way up for a Lotus. Good luck!

-Matt
 

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I would swing for an s2000 if I was you. I guess it depends on region and availability but here in Southern California, you can find nice ones for 'cheap'. My brother got a nice '01 >50k for $13,500. That included Volks rim and miscs intakes, etc.

Otherwise the early AP1s where around ~11k to 14k in great shape - with normal wear and tear. This was 2 years ago.
 

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I also like the Boxster and S2000, but man oh man they are expensive to maintain! Mazda is a very reasonable car to maintain.
 

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I had a slightly modified Mazdaspeed Miata a few years ago. Here was my short problem list:
1. Gearing too short
2. Wheels not wide enough
3. ECU is garbage and non programmable

These problems become very apparent as soon as modding begins!

I had many Flyin Miata (FM) parts:
Full intake kit with an HKS super sequential BOV and Full Exhaust. I also had a Hallman manual boost controller and bumped the boost up to 12 PSI after defeating the ECU safety feature.

This made for a fast little car that could beat a Mazdaspeed 3 until it ran out of gearing at ~128mph (even at 10 PSI). The ECU didn't cope well with the changes so it was a crap shoot as to how well it would perform minute to minute. When it did perform well, finding traction on the stock tires was an issue!

After awhile, I didn't want to waste any more money on it because I needed something more practical. To have made it perfect I would have needed the following:
1. Swap taller gear in the rear end
2. Go to at least a 245 tire in the rear
3. Install the Hydra Nemesis ECM

Obviously more work to brakes and suspension etc.. Would have made it even better, but the above list would get you to the point where one could beat stock S260's pretty easily!

http://www.flyinmiata.com/


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