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Old 02-12-2015, 02:03 PM   #21
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I told the guy i wasn't interested and he kind of got mad. This car has been for sale over a month and said that he had a buyer in the course of 12 hours of talking to him that he had to turn down. To me, another red flag. He was probably more angry that he cant get out from under this car, meaning potential problems.

I understand the power and rear ends of these cars fairly well. I've been lucky and had a torsen in 3\4 miatas ive owned. the 1.6L is what it is. The 1.8 isn't blinding fast by any means so its really peanuts to compare 20 hp difference on a 20 year+ car that was under powered from the get go. Miatas speed comes from cornering not straight lines.....No matter what engine you have.

Currently looking at a......BMW Z3 too. Found one with the 225 HP motor 6 cylinder. I know the rear end suspension is lacking compared to the miata but the naturally aspirated power kind of makes up for it. I'll report back if i end up getting something soon. Still holding hope for a boosted miata though.

Goals are pretty basic. I want a good daily driver that can be auto crossed and possibly used for track events down the road.
My dad has a Z3, I forget which year and engine but it is a I6. I have driven it a good number of times and it is a great cruising car. If I wanted to pick up my boytoy and have a nice long comfortable drive to a vineyard it is a great car. When it comes to performance I would take my miata every day of the week. Once you get a turbo on and a decent suspension you will be far ahead of the Z3 except for comfort. Z3 also have rear suspension attachment points where the welds fail.
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Old 02-12-2015, 03:10 PM   #22
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^what he said. I'm guessing you're looking at the 3.0is, probably a 2001-2002? That's a pretty great car, but definitely nowhere near as nimble as the Miata.

Lars, the earlier 2.8i Z3's were much much softer than the later 3.0is. I very nearly bought one of those, and would have if the dealer (who I worked for at the time!) wouldn't have jerked me around.
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Old 02-12-2015, 03:40 PM   #23
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Thanks for the heads up. I have been trying to do my due diligence with research (glad i am because of the original reason for the post)

The Z3 has some admirable qualities but in whole i have to agree with the Miata being a better performer. Im finding some decent Z's for ABOUT the same cost as a NB miata. The fact that i can jump into a stock car with over 200HP and weighs just a little more than the Mx5 is appealing.

I've read about the rear subframe issues and weld breaking and also the rear differential will "rip" away. That sounds quite alarming considering it is a 14-15 year old car.

Personally i've never owned a z3 and i kind of like the looks. However if the miata broke something in a desert i'm confident i could fix it well enough to limp it somewhere if needed. That counts for a lot as well.
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Old 02-12-2015, 03:45 PM   #24
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Which 200+ HP Z3's are you finding for Miata money? Certainly none worth purchasing I should think. The only Z3 that'd be at all satisfying for a performance-minded driver would be the '01+ 3.0is, or the M roadster. The earlier 2.8 was only 180 hp, so to get over 200 hp standard in the Z3 it'd have to be the '01-02 3.0 or the M roadster.

Any of those in decent shape with reasonable miles should still be going for $8k plus.
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Old 02-12-2015, 04:25 PM   #25
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yes, you are correct. However the 97-2000's had the 2.8l all aluminum engine and with some simple bolt ons get you over 200hp relatively cheap and easy. Intake, cams, exhaust, etc...Those can be found from $3500-4500.

the 3.0's are still fetching some decent cash. From the enthusiast forums they seem to like the 2.8's with the bolt on's and think they are comparable to the 3.0 if done right. Even with the bolt on's its still cheaper than boosting a miata.

At this point i'm pretty decided on one of these two cars. It comes down to the better deal presenting it's self.

the 2.8l has 189/192hp depending on what you read.
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Old 02-12-2015, 04:39 PM   #26
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I can't imagine that an intake, cams, and exhaust for a BMW could possibly be cheaper than an MKTurbo kit. I haven't researched that, but it seems like a decent NA8 + MKTurbo kit puts you in a really good spot for not a ton of money.

A <$4500 Z3 is gonna have a lot of miles and need money put into it in other areas.

But hey if that's what you want go for it! A sweet car for sure. I was drooling over $10-11k M Roadsters on CL this morning.
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Old 02-13-2015, 11:28 PM   #27
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Just for the sake of conclusion...

I ended up buying a 97 Z3 2.8L. I looked around for a decent NB miata and happened to stumble upon this at a decent buy.

Thanks everyone for steering me away from the 90' mx5 i think this will be a fun new toy. Im sure ill be back in a miata before my days are over..They are like the ex girlfriend you wished you never got rid of....
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Old 02-22-2015, 11:59 PM   #28
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Enjoy your pile of ****. The Z3 is awful in every single way (unless it's a M clownshoe, but even then it's still pretty bad for the money)
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Old 02-23-2015, 10:30 AM   #29
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Enjoy your pile of ****. The Z3 is awful in every single way (unless it's a M clownshoe, but even then it's still pretty bad for the money)
Except for comfort on long drives, and fitting more bottles of wine in the trunk then a NA/NB. It serves those purposes greatly.
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Old 02-23-2015, 05:26 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by flyin3 View Post
yes, you are correct. However the 97-2000's had the 2.8l all aluminum engine and with some simple bolt ons get you over 200hp relatively cheap and easy. Intake, cams, exhaust, etc...Those can be found from $3500-4500.

the 3.0's are still fetching some decent cash. From the enthusiast forums they seem to like the 2.8's with the bolt on's and think they are comparable to the 3.0 if done right. Even with the bolt on's its still cheaper than boosting a miata.

At this point i'm pretty decided on one of these two cars. It comes down to the better deal presenting it's self.

the 2.8l has 189/192hp depending on what you read.
Can confirm, I had a 97 2.8 (M52) Z3 with a DIY short ram intake, m50 manifold and a Magnaflow axleback that made 189whp on a dynojet.

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Originally Posted by turbofan View Post
I can't imagine that an intake, cams, and exhaust for a BMW could possibly be cheaper than an MKTurbo kit. I haven't researched that, but it seems like a decent NA8 + MKTurbo kit puts you in a really good spot for not a ton of money.

A <$4500 Z3 is gonna have a lot of miles and need money put into it in other areas.

But hey if that's what you want go for it! A sweet car for sure. I was drooling over $10-11k M Roadsters on CL this morning.
It's surprisingly inexpensive to make power with those motors. M50 manifold is ~$150, eBay headers are good (supersprint replicas), intake is a DIY, and M3 (S52) cams are a cheap drop in as well. Order a off the shelve tune for these parts and it'll easily clear 200whp. With a set of coilovers and some poly bushings they are really nimble. Another great upgrade is the 3.73 E30 LSD which is a super cheap upgrade.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:31 AM   #31
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200whp with Curb weight 2,590–3,186lb? That's really not impressing me much, and I'm guessing 2600 is for the bare-bones models
I dunno
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:32 AM   #32
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Lol that wing.
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Old 02-24-2015, 12:34 PM   #33
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200whp with Curb weight 2,5903,186lb? That's really not impressing me much, and I'm guessing 2600 is for the bare-bones models
I dunno
They can be porky, IIRC the early non-M 2.8's were in the 2700lb range. I threw a Corbeau seat in and dropped 50lbs. Pretty easy to lose some weight in those cars.
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Old 02-24-2015, 03:44 PM   #34
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I still think that unless you're looking for a road-tripper/cruiser, you're far better off with an NA8 or NB1 and an inexpensive turbo kit.
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Old 02-24-2015, 03:56 PM   #35
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I still think that unless you're looking for a road-tripper/cruiser, you're far better off with an NA8 or NB1 and an inexpensive turbo kit.
Without a doubt.
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Old 03-06-2015, 04:41 PM   #36
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So, i've had the car for a little bit now. I've taken the hideous stripes and wing off of it. This car has been pretty nightmarish so far. I've replaced the CCV, valve cover gasket, clutch slave and master, O2 sensor, oil and plugs, a ton of little vacuum lines. That had the car running good for about a week with no CEL light on. I let the car sit for two days, take it on a 30 minute trip and get a CEL for the cam sensor and the radiator had something hit it and was leaking.

Very much regretting this purchase so far, Miata Is Always The Answer.
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Old 03-06-2015, 04:47 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyin3 View Post
So, i've had the car for a little bit now. I've taken the hideous stripes and wing off of it. This car has been pretty nightmarish so far. I've replaced the CCV, valve cover gasket, clutch slave and master, O2 sensor, oil and plugs, a ton of little vacuum lines. That had the car running good for about a week with no CEL light on. I let the car sit for two days, take it on a 30 minute trip and get a CEL for the cam sensor and the radiator had something hit it and was leaking.

Very much regretting this purchase so far, Miata Is Always The Answer.
Yup, sounds like a used bmw to me. Every time I look at BMWs I remind myself that they all should have 2-4k worth of maintenance before you even register it unless the PO provides you with receipts for the work.

At least you didnt buy an audi.
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Old 03-06-2015, 04:59 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyin3 View Post
So, i've had the car for a little bit now. I've taken the hideous stripes and wing off of it. This car has been pretty nightmarish so far. I've replaced the CCV, valve cover gasket, clutch slave and master, O2 sensor, oil and plugs, a ton of little vacuum lines. That had the car running good for about a week with no CEL light on. I let the car sit for two days, take it on a 30 minute trip and get a CEL for the cam sensor and the radiator had something hit it and was leaking.

Very much regretting this purchase so far, Miata Is Always The Answer.
A used BMW with an aftermarket wing should've been the first clue the PO wasn't the master of maintenance.
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Old 03-06-2015, 05:19 PM   #39
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I don't know what you guys are smoking. My 200k+ mile '92 is a great long distance car. That's with my old tein flexes, and I'm sure newer suspension components are that much nicer.
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Old 03-06-2015, 05:29 PM   #40
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I've never had a nicer long trip car than my Miatas.

I'm not entire sure what this says, just yet.
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