Mazda's seasoned sages, lend a novice your expertise


I’ve never owned a Mazda MX-5 before but I absolutely love the MK1 (don’t we all).

I’m a bit short on car knowledge so please let me pick your brains on a listed car I’m looking at.

For a bit of background, I’m sitting on just over £10k and want to save some of that to start renting cheaply. I know MK1’s are normally seen as project cars, but is it possible to get one for a good price that will be a solid every day runner without eating into my bank balance?

I’ve got my eye on this one but to my untrained eye the MOT fails ring alarm bells and a couple of the sills seem warped… possibly rusty too?

See the listing here: 1994 1.8 Mazda Eunos Roadster V-Special II MX5 MK1 NA

And additional photos from the owner:

So the big question is, how much cash would you set aside if you bought this and will it be a reliable runner… Or is this just a pipe dream?

Thank you in advance to all who read this and help!!

It belongs, or belonged to to an owner in this club. The link is below and is well worth a read throughout the whole of the post.
The comment from the owner in Nov '22 is especially interesting

The car came back from rust protection and with very sad news to me, the previous owner masked the sills issue by amending only the external bit and it now needs “everything replaced” (not immediately, not structural, nor MOT failure, but still, the sooner the better). North of 3k… But, doing it next year. I had too many cars I didn’t really enjoy driving/caring, to know that if I give up and buy a new one I will only have to replace everything else again…

Oh that’s so sad about the rust! I’ll message him and see what the latest is with that.

Is this going to be a running theme with cars around that price do you think?

I hadn’t noticed before, but @rmii had placed a For Sale ad on the forum.

It would appear that there could some time before rust issues need to be addressed to your satisfaction. It could be worthwhile messaging him, with a follow-up full inspection, maybe armed with a boroscope to look around the inside of the sills and chassis members should you still be interested. However, if you’re very patient and continue looking, especially into the autumn and winter, then a pristine car both underneath and above just might turn up.

I’m in the fortunate position that apart from having had both sills replaced on my NB several years ago, everything appears to be OK, having waxoyled it about 12 years ago followed by a Dinitrol kit about 5 years ago. I really must make the decision this autumn as to whether to go for a full respray to get rid of the bonnet/bumper stone chips and various minor scratches.

Whatever you decide, I hope that you’ll ultimately be happy with your eventual purchase with one of these lovely cars.

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