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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey everyone, so I've been wanting an Evora for a while and am currently in the market for a new car. I'm currently deciding between a 1991-1993 MR2 (MT), 2023 GR86 (MT), and a 2011-2014 Evora MT (or as late model as I can go under $60k). All of these would be cars that I'd try to keep for as long as possible.

I don't have a car at the moment, and this would be my only one/DD -- I don't care about practicality, I work from home, don't have any kids, rarely carry stuff outside of groceries, etc. I'm in Atlanta, but will be moving to Los Angeles in late 2023 / 2024. I'm currently living in an apartment and have no plans of buying a house for the foreseeable future (5+ years). As of now, I make enough to easily cover my living expenses/savings while also having ~55% of my take home income available for discretionary use.

I'm on dealer lists for a GR86 but I've started looking at both the MR2 and Evora. With the MR2 I could buy it for < $10k and then DIY 2GR swap it and do a bunch of mods, but by my estimates it would bring it to almost $30k (including the car). Also the availability of body parts down the line could be a concern. Not to mention it's old, so crash safety is lacking (but it's not enough to dissuade me necessarily). So a little harder to justify, and ultimately will be just barely cheaper than a new stock GR86. But it also has a big fun factor.

With the GR86, I've already owned one before so I know what to expect. It was fun to drive. It'd be my instant pick if I wasn't thinking of mid-engine cars now (and also if I wasn't waiting for an undetermined amount of time for a dealer allocation).

On the Evora side, it looks like I can get a 2011 for ~$55k. However, my biggest hangup is that I live in an apartment complex, and while I can get a garage here, I don't know if I'd be able to get into a complex with one in LA for ~$1,400/month (with a roommate or two). While I live in a nicer area of Atlanta, and am targeting WeHo/Glendale/etc. in LA, I'm still somewhat paranoid of being targeted for car theft and also vandalism given the price of the clamshells.

I can do most car maintenance / work myself with the exception of body work and internal engine tear downs (I've never tried, also never worked on an Evora or mid engine car in general so this is tentative lol), so I'm hoping that would help ease the costs of ownership -- though again this could change if I can't find a suitable place in LA down the line.

Do any owners have any input on this? I really want to get a clear picture of what to expect since it's not like I'm buying a run of the mill Toyota with this one.
 

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Hey everyone, so I've been wanting an Evora for a while and am currently in the market for a new car. I'm currently deciding between a 1991-1993 MR2 (MT), 2023 GR86 (MT), and a 2011-2014 Evora MT (or as late model as I can go under $60k). All of these would be cars that I'd try to keep for as long as possible.

I don't have a car at the moment, and this would be my only one/DD -- I don't care about practicality, I work from home, don't have any kids, rarely carry stuff outside of groceries, etc. I'm in Atlanta, but will be moving to Los Angeles in late 2023 / 2024. I'm currently living in an apartment and have no plans of buying a house for the foreseeable future (5+ years). As of now, I make enough to easily cover my living expenses/savings while also having ~55% of my take home income available for discretionary use.

I'm on dealer lists for a GR86 but I've started looking at both the MR2 and Evora. With the MR2 I could buy it for < $10k and then DIY 2GR swap it and do a bunch of mods, but by my estimates it would bring it to almost $30k (including the car). Also the availability of body parts down the line could be a concern. Not to mention it's old, so crash safety is lacking (but it's not enough to dissuade me necessarily). So a little harder to justify, and ultimately will be just barely cheaper than a new stock GR86. But it also has a big fun factor.

With the GR86, I've already owned one before so I know what to expect. It was fun to drive. It'd be my instant pick if I wasn't thinking of mid-engine cars now (and also if I wasn't waiting for an undetermined amount of time for a dealer allocation).

On the Evora side, it looks like I can get a 2011 for ~$55k. However, my biggest hangup is that I live in an apartment complex, and while I can get a garage here, I don't know if I'd be able to get into a complex with one in LA for ~$1,400/month (with a roommate or two). While I live in a nicer area of Atlanta, and am targeting WeHo/Glendale/etc. in LA, I'm still somewhat paranoid of being targeted for car theft and also vandalism given the price of the clamshells.

I can do most car maintenance / work myself with the exception of body work and internal engine tear downs (I've never tried, also never worked on an Evora or mid engine car in general so this is tentative lol), so I'm hoping that would help ease the costs of ownership -- though again this could change if I can't find a suitable place in LA down the line.

Do any owners have any input on this? I really want to get a clear picture of what to expect since it's not like I'm buying a run of the mill Toyota with this one.
I had a 2012 Evora years ago as my daily driver and similar to you I lived on east coast with no drive way. The first thing you need to research if you haven’t already are the quirks of Evora ownership. This includes thinks like parasitic draws that kill the battery quickly, electrical quirks with the window, faulty wiring harnesses, the forbidden trunk locking you out etc etc. Most folks keep their evoras on a tender but I didn’t (and still don’t). I learned the hard way that these issues can come out of no where but now I’m prepared.

That being said, it’s a fantastic car and can be daily driven. The 2+2 with the backseat helped me with groceries, my work bag etc. it’s comfortable enough to sit in for your commute and had no issues getting in and out like I had in my Elise. Keep in mind, if you ever get into a fender bender with it, it’ll be out of commission for several months because of the scarcity of parts and because the body is made of fiberglass. Ask me how I know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I had a 2012 Evora years ago as my daily driver and similar to you I lived on east coast with no drive way. The first thing you need to research if you haven’t already are the quirks of Evora ownership. This includes thinks like parasitic draws that kill the battery quickly, electrical quirks with the window, faulty wiring harnesses, the forbidden trunk locking you out etc etc. Most folks keep their evoras on a tender but I didn’t (and still don’t). I learned the hard way that these issues can come out of no where but now I’m prepared.

That being said, it’s a fantastic car and can be daily driven. The 2+2 with the backseat helped me with groceries, my work bag etc. it’s comfortable enough to sit in for your commute and had no issues getting in and out like I had in my Elise. Keep in mind, if you ever get into a fender bender with it, it’ll be out of commission for several months because of the scarcity of parts and because the body is made of fiberglass. Ask me how I know.
I was reading a couple of threads about people’s batteries getting killed so I think the first thing I’d need to stick in the car is a portable jump starter since I will never use a battery tender haha. The other electrical quirks are things I’m willing to work with and sort out over time. I’m honestly willing to put up with a lot outside of engine issues.

Good to know though for sure that I’m not alone on the driveway situation. Luckily my complex is solid so I’m not worried about issues there, more so outside of it. But then again my biggest threat to the cars body is most likely myself haha.

The fiber glass issue is a tough one and risky. As long as I’d be able to drift stitch it or something in the interim I’m sure I can deal with it. I plan on paying the car off quickly so I’d likely buy a $5k beater next year for any loss events.

I’m surprised part scarcity is an issue (outside of current world events). It’s just a production lead time + shipping from the UK thing right? These cars aren’t extremely old like the MR2 is.

That honestly gives me more confidence! I’ll definitely research more as I won’t be ready to buy until November.
 

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Have you seen the total production numbers? That will explain the parts scarcity. I live in an apartment and I'm also more of a DIY guy, no major issues, never worried about vandalism. The Evora would be more reliable than the MR2. I also have a 30yr old Japanese car, things get worn out. I pretty much daily the Evora in the summer, it's very versatile and based on your situation I wouldn't see any issues.

I would definitely try to find a garage spot when you move though, I'd personally hate to have it sit outside.
 

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I was reading a couple of threads about people’s batteries getting killed so I think the first thing I’d need to stick in the car is a portable jump starter since I will never use a battery tender haha.
If you keep reading threads, you'll find that jump-starting the car is not recommended, and can lead to the dreaded COMMS error.
 

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If you keep reading threads, you'll find that jump-starting the car is not recommended, and can lead to the dreaded COMMS error.
Good point! You’ll also seem some forum members making the switch to lithium ion batteries. I just made the switch this week to an anti gravity battery to avoid battery drain issues down the line since I don’t have a garage.
 

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If you are going to be tender free, cross an Evora off your list. You will quickly become a low battery syndrome electrical gremlin owner that bitches and complains. Incorrectly stated above, battery type does NOT stop battery drain. Yes many new ones have a low voltage cutoffs, but you still have the condition......
 

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If you are going to be tender free, cross an Evora off your list. You will quickly become a low battery syndrome electrical gremlin owner that bitches and complains. Incorrectly stated above, battery type does NOT stop battery drain. Yes many new ones have a low voltage cutoffs, but you still have the condition......
That is true, but I say that so for those that have no way to get the car on a tender. At least you don’t have a car that has a dead battery in a week due to the OE battery. The lithium battery buys you more time in between drives..
 

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If you are going to be tender free, cross an Evora off your list. You will quickly become a low battery syndrome electrical gremlin owner that bitches and complains. Incorrectly stated above, battery type does NOT stop battery drain. Yes many new ones have a low voltage cutoffs, but you still have the condition......
If you are using the car regularly you don't need a tender. I've only ever plugged my car in during the winter and while I was away on vacation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If you are using the car regularly you don't need a tender. I've only ever plugged my car in during the winter and while I was away on vacation.
Okay so good info on the battery tender. I do plan on driving it at least once a day and wouldn’t go more than 2 days at the very most without driving it typically. So I don’t think battery drain would be a huge issue for me. It’ll be driven year round.

Worst case scenario is that I could just remove the battery itself and charge it inside my apartment.
 

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I drive it at least every 2 weeks. No battery issue per say.

The crux of the battery issue is that you need battery to reliably access the battery stock. (Trunk release is electric, emergency backup is known to break).

Iirc you've said you'd daily it. Probably not an issue.

What's on my list is to provide a charge point from outside the rear trunk so if it does die, can access the charge point without battery.

As far as jumping, seems a lot of folks have issues with too high of a voltage frying some of the control electronics. My guess is the jump systems/other cars are providing something like 14.5-15v+. I've noted the Evora never charges above 13v from driving - so if you know your only giving it 12v just to get it off being dead - probably fine. Again daily driving, not a likely issue.

Common issues I'm aware of on the S1: master cylinder, blue ball. Early S1: wiring harness, shift cables
One that's driven and no codes no limp isn't likely to have wire harness issues.
Master cylinder is doable with a pair of folks and aftermarket answer.
Blue ball: dunno how hard the install is, but there is a pricey solution aftermarket, and forum is currently working a lower cost solution.
Shift cables: dunno how hard, but there is aftermarket answer.

Re lotus parts:
I wouldn't count on OEM body panel availability. Some of the suppliers have aftermarket replacement setups figured out - but your looking at built to order composite work so there is a bit of lead time.

I will tell you tho- the rubber bits of the Evora are in way better shape than a 30yr old japanese! (Grumble grumble 94 integra...)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Have you seen the total production numbers? That will explain the parts scarcity. I live in an apartment and I'm also more of a DIY guy, no major issues, never worried about vandalism. The Evora would be more reliable than the MR2. I also have a 30yr old Japanese car, things get worn out. I pretty much daily the Evora in the summer, it's very versatile and based on your situation I wouldn't see any issues.

I would definitely try to find a garage spot when you move though, I'd personally hate to have it sit outside.
I was thinking that parts scarcity was just due to limited availability and longer waiting times rather than parts just straight up being out of production like with the MR2.

Good to know about your experience with it though! While I can’t do much about it being outside I can at least get ceramic and ppf and stay on top of washing it.

I’ll definitely look at a garage though for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I drive it at least every 2 weeks. No battery issue per say.

The crux of the battery issue is that you need battery to reliably access the battery stock. (Trunk release is electric, emergency backup is known to break).

Iirc you've said you'd daily it. Probably not an issue.

What's on my list is to provide a charge point from outside the rear trunk so if it does die, can access the charge point without battery.

As far as jumping, seems a lot of folks have issues with too high of a voltage frying some of the control electronics. My guess is the jump systems/other cars are providing something like 14.5-15v+. I've noted the Evora never charges above 13v from driving - so if you know your only giving it 12v just to get it off being dead - probably fine. Again daily driving, not a likely issue.

Common issues I'm aware of on the S1: master cylinder, blue ball. Early S1: wiring harness, shift cables
One that's driven and no codes no limp isn't likely to have wire harness issues.
Master cylinder is doable with a pair of folks and aftermarket answer.
Blue ball: dunno how hard the install is, but there is a pricey solution aftermarket, and forum is currently working a lower cost solution.
Shift cables: dunno how hard, but there is aftermarket answer.

Re lotus parts:
I wouldn't count on OEM body panel availability. Some of the suppliers have aftermarket replacement setups figured out - but your looking at built to order composite work so there is a bit of lead time.

I will tell you tho- the rubber bits of the Evora are in way better shape than a 30yr old japanese! (Grumble grumble 94 integra...)
Well there goes my battery removal idea haha. I’ll probably just swap to an anti-gravity and call it a day then.

I did read about some of the early S1 issues. Hopefully I can get my hands on a 2012-2014 model to avoid some of this.

As for body parts, it’s ultimately not a huge deal for now as I wouldn’t mind getting one of the aftermarket options from Hethelsport.
 

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If money is not an issue, get the best driving experience car. In this case, it's the Evora. I guess you are still young, so you have time. I'm in my late 40s so want to experience all I can. Just remember that you can't buy lost time. My boys are getting their license next year and I already brought them a mid-engine MR2. I wanted them to experience sport cars at the very young age; plus, they are great kids and had help me a lot.
 

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If money is not an issue, get the best driving experience car. In this case, it's the Evora. I guess you are still young, so you have time. I'm in my late 40s so want to experience all I can. Just remember that you can't buy lost time. My boys are getting their license next year and I already brought them a mid-engine MR2. I wanted them to experience sport cars at the very young age; plus, they are great kids and had help me a lot.
I'm in my 30s and felt like time was running out for me to own an analog sports car. Manuals are dying, internal combustion is dying, basically all the analog sports cars have already been made. Cars that I thought I would own like a NSX, air called 911, Exige S all have pricing through the roof and they appreciate faster than I can earn money. I had the opportunity to make an Evora work and I jumped on it
 

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My Evora was outside for the time I was driving for a couple of years. I stored it a winter or two, but outside of that it was outside and my only car. If you can manage daily or near daily driving; I would not worry about the battery. You need it to be a true daily or the CTEK becomes a concern.

Make sure you have a back up camera or one installed. They don't make cars much harder to parallel park.
 

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If it were me, I would not want to go to the trouble to mess with the MR2.
That leaves the GR86 and the Evora. I've also owned a first-gen 86 and really liked it. It's a different kind of fun than an Evora, which I've driven a grand total of once by comparison... :LOL:
The 86 will be more tossable, brash, get-the-rear-end loose, thrash-it kind of fun while remaining responsive and playful and handling well. You'll also benefit from a plentiful supply of mechanics who can work on the car if needed and a lot greater part availability and aftermarket support for everything. Fewer quirks. Easier to work on too, and makes you less of a target. It's the more practical choice in some ways if you're not worried about losing some value to depreciation. You'd be buying that new though, maybe even with a markup, whereas the Evora will depreciate slowly, if at all. The Evora has a higher cost of entry though.
The Evora is a more refined and subtle kind of driving fun, with a lot of great driver feedback and even better handling than the 86. Neither will blow you away with power but rather give you fun in other ways. Do you want the car to grip and turn in well, communicate with you, and reward you for keeping it's balance, or do you want to powerslide it around with a grin and not worry about dings and bumps to bodywork and stuff?
There's no wrong answer here. Both of these cars are well-loved by enthusiasts.
The trunk lockout issue with the Evora is a big concern I've heard, and some of the members here have rigged up magnetic breakaway charging solutions from the outside to solve that problem, just in case.
I think in general I would worry about everything a bit more with the Evora, from extra attention to maintenance / parts to fender benders, where that would not be the case with the GR86.
Do you want something special that would potentially require more conscious planning and attention to own, or something that will be totally fun and accessible in a different way and never really worry you about anything?
The deciding factor for me might be the prediction that lots of GR86s will be available in the future for a lot longer and at lower prices, whereas at some point the window for owning a good Evora will close.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
If money is not an issue, get the best driving experience car. In this case, it's the Evora. I guess you are still young, so you have time. I'm in my late 40s so want to experience all I can. Just remember that you can't buy lost time. My boys are getting their license next year and I already brought them a mid-engine MR2. I wanted them to experience sport cars at the very young age; plus, they are great kids and had help me a lot.
I'm in my late 20s haha. So yeah, I definitely want to at least get a sports car that I can keep for life (or until it gets destroyed). Really, the only two cars that I can see myself owning "forever" are a GR86 and Evora/Emira, unless I were somehow offered a current gen Ford GT in exchange for one.

If it were me, I would not want to go to the trouble to mess with the MR2.
That leaves the GR86 and the Evora. I've also owned a first-gen 86 and really liked it. It's a different kind of fun than an Evora, which I've driven a grand total of once by comparison... :LOL:
The 86 will be more tossable, brash, get-the-rear-end loose, thrash-it kind of fun while remaining responsive and playful and handling well. You'll also benefit from a plentiful supply of mechanics who can work on the car if needed and a lot greater part availability and aftermarket support for everything. Fewer quirks. Easier to work on too, and makes you less of a target. It's the more practical choice in some ways if you're not worried about losing some value to depreciation. You'd be buying that new though, maybe even with a markup, whereas the Evora will depreciate slowly, if at all. The Evora has a higher cost of entry though.
The Evora is a more refined and subtle kind of driving fun, with a lot of great driver feedback and even better handling than the 86. Neither will blow you away with power but rather give you fun in other ways. Do you want the car to grip and turn in well, communicate with you, and reward you for keeping it's balance, or do you want to powerslide it around with a grin and not worry about dings and bumps to bodywork and stuff?
There's no wrong answer here. Both of these cars are well-loved by enthusiasts.
The trunk lockout issue with the Evora is a big concern I've heard, and some of the members here have rigged up magnetic breakaway charging solutions from the outside to solve that problem, just in case.
I think in general I would worry about everything a bit more with the Evora, from extra attention to maintenance / parts to fender benders, where that would not be the case with the GR86.
Do you want something special that would potentially require more conscious planning and attention to own, or something that will be totally fun and accessible in a different way and never really worry you about anything?
I don't have a huge interest in drifting around but I do have a one in taking things to the track. I wouldn't worry about the Evora much and would just swallow the pill on track day insurance considering I'd only do it once, maybe twice a year.

From what I've read maintenance from the most part seems pretty trivial (even tires don't really seem extreme and I only drive like 8k miles a year). It's just the clutch replacement and fiberglass repair that's a killer. However, I can keep savings around for the year 4 clutch repair, so no big deal. The fiberglass on the other hand is much less predictable. But it's something I can deal with when it happens.

Financially, it might be a toss up. I'm possibly considering upping my budget to a limit of $80k after TTL and considering a 2017 400 as well if I can find one. I wouldn't mod the Evora really while I'm paying it off outside of a GT4 wing, exhaust and head unit. The GR86 on the other hand, well, I have a build list that would put me above $30k invested for sure even if I DIY.

The deciding factor for me might be the prediction that lots of GR86s will be available in the future for a lot longer and at lower prices, whereas at some point the window for owning a good Evora will close.
I'm in my 30s and felt like time was running out for me to own an analog sports car. Manuals are dying, internal combustion is dying, basically all the analog sports cars have already been made. Cars that I thought I would own like a NSX, air called 911, Exige S all have pricing through the roof and they appreciate faster than I can earn money. I had the opportunity to make an Evora work and I jumped on it
I'm kind of worried about this. The Evora is the only mid engine car that I can reasonably afford, and I wouldn't be surprised if values spike like crazy over the next few years so I don't want to miss out on owning one, because it is extremely unlikely that I'll be a millionaire and able to spend $300k on an Evora in 2035.

The Lotus would be a better fit for the LA scene.
You're not wrong. In this city the go to cars are mopars. The number of BRZs/86s I've seen here in the past year is less than 10.
 
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