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NA Miata for DD?


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22 replies to this topic

#1
BigMonkey73

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Should I do it?

Under $5k, a little over 2K curb weight, great handling so fun to drive 10/10ths all the time, I assume pretty reliable and cheap to maintain...

I've really had the itch for a low power car to serve as my daily / back up.

I'm tossing around BRZ/86/Miata late gent up to $20K ish..or a Kia Soul/Rio, or a Chevy Spark, or Yaris.

I am so torn between them all. The NA Miata is just so tempting at such a low buy in cost.

Cheap fun is what attracts me right now. I can never floor it in the Vette for too long without risking trouble..gotta wait for track days. I always remember renting a little Yaris and having so much fun that it wouldn't go anywhere at 100% throttle...I've wanted that ever since



#2
SikedSyko

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BMW Z4. Same idea, but more performance, more interior space, more trunk space, beautiful i6 motor. $10-12k picks up a very clean, low mileage example. $6-8k can pick up a clean-ish higher mileage car. $5k gets you one that runs and drives.

 

Glorious BMW reliability also. :rolleyes:



#3
BRZ4Science

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86, it's got plenty of space and is a very livable daily driver. The seats fold down and you can get a full set of tires and tools in it, or groceries, golf clubs, etc. The NA is fine as long as you don't have too long of a commute and don't plan needing any real 'practicality'. They can also be a tight squeeze if you are 6' or taller (or a full sized american). You won't lose money with an NA and even if you do you're out the equivalent of one BMW major service.



#4
z28pwr

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I would jump into an 09 or greater NC instead of an NA and if you need more room, go with the 86/FRS/BRZ.

Straight roads are for fast cars, curvy roads are for fast drivers!


#5
tyhackman15

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I love having my 95 NA as a (somewhat) daily.  Probably 3-4x per week unless its in the low 40s or colder.  You'll get 24-26 mpg or so, you pretty much have to rev the thing out every shift to keep up with traffic nowadays, which is part of the enjoyment. 

 

As long as you physically fit in the car comfortably, I don't see a reason not to daily an NA.  They are going up in value, find a nice clean one ($4-5k gets you a near mint ~100k or less, 1.8L example) keep it mostly stock and just enjoy the thing.  Throw a new headunit with bluetooth in there for $60 or so and you're set. 

 

Parts are comically cheap, good street/performance tires are about $250 a set, etc. 

 

Also, you can't beat a miata in the rain.  It'll make your commute 10x more fun, even with an open diff. 



#6
Hollywood

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Also, you can't beat a miata in the rain.  It'll make your commute 10x more fun, even with an open diff. 

 

Amen. Although I drove the S2000 today, same applies....that 610 offramp was straight up tokyo D this morning. I'm the only one smiling at work on a Monday at the moment.


I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"
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#7
jared

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If you're doing speeds over 65-70mph it can get load inside, a hardtop will help with this. That is really the only drawback, lots of road noise.



#8
BigMonkey73

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I have a friend who's selling a 2008 Saturn Sky, also now in the mix. It's not the Redline and it isn't particularly in great shape...about 150K on the clock. What I do know is that he isn't a racer so it wasn't beat on...and I can get it for under $5K...so low end of the value spectrum. Also, it's an automatic :(  Plus no trunk room to speak of and I understand the convertible top is a pain.

 

I like the style, but man I didn't realize they were so heavy. That little thing is almost 3K lbs. I'd like to buy it from him, but I'm not convinced it will make me as happy as the NA Miata.



#9
jared

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I know you're in Dallas but here is a smoking deal on an NC2.

https://austin.craig...6813616877.html

It is also automatic but in the stop and go traffic, it's pretty nice to have. Also the PRHT kills that road noise.

 

OR, if you want your Miata with some extra torque...

https://austin.craig...6799794794.html



#10
Hollywood

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5c61915ff3c48_jobtjmp4pgz0ihisgmau.gif


I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"
99 SM | 99 WRL | 08 S2000 CR | 18 CIVIC TYPE-R


#11
IanIsInGarage

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Get a clean NA. They are stupid fun and will be collector items if you keep long term.  Next year is the 30 yr mark on Miata and I bet we'll never see the end of this great line of cars making the first ones that much more collectible IMO.  Second to that get the NB like I did.  I prefer the looks more and they are still raw.



#12
cabowabo

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If you just want a cheap shitbox that you can treat like the world's fastest car (a rental), then do just that. If you want the most fun of the 100hp shitboxes, then get a Miata.

...and not practical? Pfftt eye of the beer holder, I've been DD'ing NAs exclusively since before FT86s were in diapers.

 

*not pictured, my dog riding shotgun*

20190128_150541.jpeg



#13
El_Tortuga

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If you just want a cheap shitbox that you can treat like the world's fastest car (a rental), then do just that. If you want the most fun of the 100hp shitboxes, then get a Miata.

...and not practical? Pfftt eye of the beer holder, I've been DD'ing NAs exclusively since before FT86s were in diapers.

 

*not pictured, my dog riding shotgun*

attachicon.gif20190128_150541.jpeg

Love the tire rack!!! That's greatness



#14
Rev

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I've done some DD and a lot of weekend-only in an NA and an NB and now an S2k. All are a lot of fun on the street, especially the NA and NB (the S2k is a bit too tempting to speed IMO). The NB had a significantly nicer interior, but other than that, they were very similar. 

 

Pros for driving an na/nb DD:

- Truly fun at legal speeds

- Ridiculously cheap maintenance and tons of online support

- Fun to modify with aftermarket parts to "tune" it exactly to your liking (suspension, exhaust, clutch, seats, etc, etc.)

 

Cons for driving an na/nb DD:

- Scary when surrounded by big SUV's/trucks whose drivers are texting! I got rear ended by such a person. It did $2700 of damage to my nb and only dented his license plate. There's no way around the fact that an na/nb is practically invisible to today's distracted drivers. And since they've got a ton advantage on you, your miata will lose. Just something to be aware of. You've got to be really diligent and defensive out there.

- Loud at highway speeds

- Hard to get into at 40+ years old. I had an aftermarket seat in both my na and nb to get my head low enough to fit roll-bar requirements on track. By 41, I was struggling to get in and out of that seat over and over. For reference, I'm 5'10" and 155#, but my torso is relatively tall for my height. My S2k is notably easier to get in and out of.



#15
drewtk

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I daily drove an NB for around a year. If you do a lot of freeway driving, it’s a definite ‘no’ vote from me. Way too noisy and the engine spins at a really high RPM on the freeway.

#16
cabowabo

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Way too noisy and the engine spins at a really high RPM on the freeway.

 

Noisy, sure and not much you can do about it but the RPM's are a non-issue. People coming from pretty much any other car are alarmed by seeing 4k rpm at 80mph, but the BP will churn that out day in day out without complaint. 4k is only high RPM relative to your typical commuter or v8 churning out 2k at 80mph.



#17
BigMonkey73

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I've done some DD and a lot of weekend-only in an NA and an NB and now an S2k. All are a lot of fun on the street, especially the NA and NB (the S2k is a bit too tempting to speed IMO). The NB had a significantly nicer interior, but other than that, they were very similar. 

 

Pros for driving an na/nb DD:

- Truly fun at legal speeds

- Ridiculously cheap maintenance and tons of online support

- Fun to modify with aftermarket parts to "tune" it exactly to your liking (suspension, exhaust, clutch, seats, etc, etc.)

 

Cons for driving an na/nb DD:

- Scary when surrounded by big SUV's/trucks whose drivers are texting! I got rear ended by such a person. It did $2700 of damage to my nb and only dented his license plate. There's no way around the fact that an na/nb is practically invisible to today's distracted drivers. And since they've got a ton advantage on you, your miata will lose. Just something to be aware of. You've got to be really diligent and defensive out there.

- Loud at highway speeds

- Hard to get into at 40+ years old. I had an aftermarket seat in both my na and nb to get my head low enough to fit roll-bar requirements on track. By 41, I was struggling to get in and out of that seat over and over. For reference, I'm 5'10" and 155#, but my torso is relatively tall for my height. My S2k is notably easier to get in and out of.

 

 

I daily drove an NB for around a year. If you do a lot of freeway driving, it’s a definite ‘no’ vote from me. Way too noisy and the engine spins at a really high RPM on the freeway.

 

These are good points, hadn't thought of them. Thanks guys



#18
drewtk

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Noisy, sure and not much you can do about it but the RPM's are a non-issue. People coming from pretty much any other car are alarmed by seeing 4k rpm at 80mph, but the BP will churn that out day in day out without complaint. 4k is only high RPM relative to your typical commuter or v8 churning out 2k at 80mph.

 

I meant that the high RPM's add to the noise, on top of the car being noisy to begin with from road and wind noise.  That's why I love towing with a diesel.  70 mph and churning less than 2K rpm. 



#19
Shuka

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The AC sucks and the transmission tunnel is a furnace. The NB's improved on most of that. NA Miata is also SUPER SLOW, so plan to be frustrated by the "speed up as you pass them" drivers.

 

Even the ND is very noisy at highway speeds so if you have a long commute maybe get something with a solid roof.



#20
joesurf79

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"Cheap fun is what attracts me right now...gotta wait for track days. " I feel ya brother!

 

This is what drove me to the "NBeater" I bought :) It's a freaking hoot to beat on, now that I have all (almost all maybe?)  the critical maintenance done, and I could literally care less if the guy next to me in the parking garage does anything stupid (within reason of course).

 

DO EEETTTT!


It shouldn't be all that hard to parent better than I drive...Both are fun so far :)