Buying a mk3 mx-5, my first one

Attached is the link to the car I am considering, it’s my first time buying an MX-5 but feel I’ve done a fair amount of the research that’s available on the internet as there is no shortage of buying guides!
I was wondering if any members here have any information or suggestions regarding whether they think the car attached is a good find because it all looks good to me rust wise from what I can see in the photos.

The MOT doesn’t show any nasties apart from tyre warnings, no rust mentioned.
Beware though that rust could be present, rear wheel arch, all around the return lip and in the lower part where it meets the sill. Of course it will have an arch lining in there, you can also check under the car in that area, the sills. The outer sills are covered with plastic trim but give the rear parts a good inspection, the rear part can be a rust trap.
Check SH and most important if it’s had regular oil changes and the oil level is bang on at the max level. Check for odd noises from the engine too and it doesn’t burn oil, all standard checks for most cars really. Take a look at the tyres, any mismatched, these can be fixed but it tells you how the previous owner has treated the car (I can see from the MOT history it wasn’t a concern for the previous owner(s) re condition of tyres) apart from all that the general condition.
At least you aren’t going in blind, asking questions before on here.:+1:

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Only thing I would add is that I would try to drive a non-Sport model as well - just to answer the questions, a) do you need/want 6 gears or will it prove to be irritating to be constantly stirring the box? and b) likewise 17" wheels with all the harsher ride/easier kerbing that goes with them?

I answered no to both and got an Icon instead, although I know the Sport is considered more desirable.

Looks a nice car though. :+1:

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same as i paid for my 07, 74k miles, 1.8 LT, looks nice, do you get a warranty?
found mine needed aircon recharge done under warranty, had a sticky front caliper (less than an hour to fix), and some rust driver side rear cill £40 welding. Central locking didn’t work and needed both door locks replacing (second hand about an hour a side). still haven’t managed to rod the drain holes, but cabin is dry (horaah!) done about 2500 miles now and love it, just put some goodyear efficient grips on the front steers much nicer. did a full fluid change, because you can and fitted some clear side indicator lenses.

All the comments above are really good.

You may also want to check the floor area behind the passenger and driver’s seat is dry, dampness or water would indicate blocked drain holes, you might see some condensation on the rear screen too.

I found a lot of surface rust on the underside of the 2 NC’s I had which didn’t concern me too much, more worried about rust appearing on the bodywork.

Drive the car, the 6-speed box has a slightly more mechanical feel than the 1.8 5-speed. Check the clutch feel, brakes and engine noise. When test driving the car I always keep the hood up so you can listen to the car more easily too.

These are great cars, as @MickAP mentions if the service record is in good order then see how you feel after…

Good luck,

Also check the passenger footwell for damp.
There’s a small gasket that fails.
Its an easy fix but may enable you to drive the price down a bit

Also…always always ask for the car to be started form dead cold.
If there is bearing/ shell wear, that’ll show it up more.

Very good tip