Should I take a punt or run away?

So basically I’m 17 years old looking for a reasonably priced project that I can take advantage of in a few years, so obviously the first choice is an mx5. My neighbour has an na 1.6 and only wants 100 quid for it. It’s only 70k miles and hes had it from new only problem is very visible rust, should I take a punt? Appreciate any feedback. 

Hi Alex, for £100, provided you’ve somewhere to put it, off the road, go for it! If everything else is fine, apart from the rust, it’s worth more as a spares car! Obviously a UK model and you don’t say how bad the rust is, or where it is on the car, but I can guess  If it’s too far gone, get another as you go along and make the best of both. Good luck.


Buy it, break it. Make more money to buy a better car. You might fall out with your neighbour (and parents) if you turn your drive into a scrapyard (it’ll take a while to sell the parts).

Does it run?

At £100, its worth a punt, but probably will end up costing you as much to get it on the road as buying a decent one in the first place, but to be fair, more details are needed.

Any MX5 with a MOT is worth £1000. What’s needed to get a MOT on it, just welding? Welding can be done very expensively (pay a body shop) or cheaply (mobile welder, ugly repairs, or learn yourself, also ugly repairs).

Just make sure you tell your parents


As Barrie says it’s a no brainer if you’re willing and eager to learn about car stuff (sorry if you already do) You’l most likely needed to know how to weld first off, unless you have that covered, go for it.

Great advice there.

If you buy with the intention of restoring you will learn a lot just by investigating what needs doing. If you can do the work yourself you will get a great car for little money.

If it turns out to be not worth restoring you will learn even more by breaking it.

Whatever happens you can’t lose and will learn a lot.

Go for it.

Q1. Can you weld.

Q2. Do you have a fire extinguisher.

Q3. Do you have somewhere to work on it.

Mk1 (pop up lights) or Mk2 (fixed headlights)?

Thanks for all the advice guys, reckon I’ll get it and store it in the shed for now whilst I go through and see how bad everything is. As i said it’s only done 70k miles so the rust is really the only main concern. But if I either try and get it road worthy or just break it it’s really a no lose situation. Be a great way to learn about them as I’m desperate to have an mx5 on the road in a few years (when insurance is less bank breaking) cheers again.

Snatch your neighbours hand off before he realises what he has got. I think, if he advertises it, he would get quite a bit more money for it.  For starters the engine should be in good condition after only running so few miles. Don’t forget, if you have the money to restore it, you will probably get dumped by your girl friend as you will get so involved in the restoration you wont have time for her.

I wish that in hindsight I had had the opportunity you have been given. I was in my early 70s when I restored my car. Couldn’t do it now I am too old.