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Old 12-13-2008, 05:47 PM   #1
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Default Vote for which 99 Miata I should buy

I have three cars I am looking at right now and I want your input on which I should pursue.

1) Salvage due to accident years ago but claims no frame damage: Silver 99, 89k miles, ABS, new black top, cloth seats, no airbags, will sell for $4k. Car is relatively local.
2) Salvage title, unknown reason: Dark Blue 99, 60k miles, 5 speed, cloth seats, Possible on Nardi wheel (he wasn't sure), no airbags, buyer identified slow power windows , claims it has a Torsen, asking $3975. Car is 4 hours away.
3) Clear title: Red 99, 99k miles, new top, 17" aftermarket wheels , leather seats, bose system (according to door panels anyway), Nardi wheel (so it should have the torsen, claims to have a crack in the front bumper. Selling for $4400. Car is relatively local.

I think I am going for #3, but I want to know what you all think.
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Old 12-13-2008, 05:50 PM   #2
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I say go for the straightest chassis, everything else can be changed.
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Old 12-13-2008, 05:57 PM   #3
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#3 by far.......sounds loaded and better taken care of.
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Old 12-13-2008, 06:00 PM   #4
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at such a small price increase you get a clean title/clean body car. #3 for sure
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Old 12-13-2008, 06:00 PM   #5
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yeah, that's what I think too. I am going to run by there later tonight.
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Old 12-13-2008, 06:14 PM   #6
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3
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Old 12-13-2008, 07:16 PM   #7
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get the one with the slotted rotors.
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Old 12-13-2008, 08:14 PM   #8
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#3. No doubt.
Before I bought mine, I looked at a 1999 10th anniversary. It had 1 badge on the drivers side fender, gauges from an 01?, a blue cloth top, a header, an air intake, and a carbon fiber hood, and a few other items. It had a salvage title due to theft. The woman said I could have it for $7 grand. This car seemed shady, especially since it was a 10th anniversary with gaudy aftermarket **** on it.
I looked at another car almost identical to mine. It was a 99, Emerald green 5 speed, bone stock. The guy lived right next to the Chesapeak bay in DE and the tail panel of the car had some rust on it, which is no big deal. I could feel in the pedal that the clutch was junk. I think he wanted $6500? Decent car, but needed a clutch.
The one I ended up buying had a $7495 price tag on it at the Mazda dealer. It was a local 1 owner car. The only add on the previous owner did was the aftermarket rims. I called back 3 days later and offered $6k cash, and they bit. So I think I got the good deal. I coulda paid a grand more for a chopped up R title'd 10th anniversary, or 5 hundo more for a car that might not have made it home on the clutch.
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Old 12-13-2008, 10:32 PM   #9
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well, I just got back from looking at the car. It was in surprisingly good shape. I have more dents in my 99 than this one did. There is one very small dent in the trunk. Looks like someone tried to slam the trunk shut with too much stuff in it. The only main issue with the car is his 'girlfriend' totally destroyed the front bumper cover. Didn't mess up any of the supports, thank goodness, but I will have to replace it. Seats were in good condition and the whole thing was bone stock. He had some hulking 17" wheels on it, so the car felt SLOW. Or, perhaps it is because I am now used to what the turbo feels like

Unfortunately, he hasn't done any maintenance on the car. Timing belt should probably be replaced, the radiator and power brake reservoirs were overfilled and the clutch fluid looked black.

Get some real rims on it and replace the shocks and it might be a good car. I am going to pick it up on Wednesday when my transfer clears my bank. It really sucks not having a local bank when you need cash for a sale.
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Old 12-13-2008, 10:52 PM   #10
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go with #3. go for the best option available. it will be worth the little extra cash. besides, 99k on these cars isnt really too much if its been looked after with care
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Old 12-14-2008, 02:08 AM   #11
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a clear title is worth way more than 400 bucks.
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Old 12-14-2008, 02:36 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by posidon42 View Post
well, I just got back from looking at the car. It was in surprisingly good shape. I have more dents in my 99 than this one did. There is one very small dent in the trunk. Looks like someone tried to slam the trunk shut with too much stuff in it. The only main issue with the car is his 'girlfriend' totally destroyed the front bumper cover. Didn't mess up any of the supports, thank goodness, but I will have to replace it. Seats were in good condition and the whole thing was bone stock. He had some hulking 17" wheels on it, so the car felt SLOW. Or, perhaps it is because I am now used to what the turbo feels like

Unfortunately, he hasn't done any maintenance on the car. Timing belt should probably be replaced, the radiator and power brake reservoirs were overfilled and the clutch fluid looked black.

Get some real rims on it and replace the shocks and it might be a good car. I am going to pick it up on Wednesday when my transfer clears my bank. It really sucks not having a local bank when you need cash for a sale.
I'd tell him to keep the wheels (I'm sure you can find some stockers in SoCal for < $200 if you don't have an extra set), and deduct for the maintenance that needs to be done. But yeah, #3 all the way.
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Old 12-14-2008, 02:39 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by y8s View Post
a clear title is worth way more than 400 bucks.
That was pretty much my feeling on the matter. Anyone looking for some stock parts? I haven't decided what I am going to do with this thing yet
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Old 12-14-2008, 02:41 AM   #14
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I may be missing another post where you point this out, but why are you trying to buy a '99? I would consider that year to be at the very bottom of Miatas that I would buy. I have seen too many used ones come with $1,000+ in needed repairs (dealer rates) due to the substandard first gen coil pack. We've got a guy in our Miata club who just spent $1700 in repairs on his and my mother-in-laws has been over here for work many many times (she is trying to nickle and dime it instead of fixing everything at once). Why not look for a nice '00 instead?
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Old 12-14-2008, 03:21 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by posidon42 View Post
That was pretty much my feeling on the matter. Anyone looking for some stock parts? I haven't decided what I am going to do with this thing yet
Stock wheels?
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Old 12-14-2008, 01:41 PM   #16
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check the vin and make sure the #4 bearing issue does not affect any of the 99;s you look at.
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