OK. So about a week ago I asked you guys for some suggestions what to get my brother for his second car, having totaled his first car, a 96 Honda Civic Ex Coupe. I appreciated the responses and did read all of them, but I ran across a little gem while exploring the wonderful realm of Craigslist. A gem which surprisingly took quite a bit of convincing for my brother to consider let alone purchase.
A Mazda Miata! Because we all know "Miata Is Always The Answer."
Ok, big deal right? Miatas are everywhere on Craigslist some great, some not so great. Well this particular Miata is a not great, its amazing! And here's a little story of how I convinced my brother to buy one of the most impractical cars.
If it seems like I'm excited, its because I am. I consider myself a car enthusiast, something my brother is not, but he still likes a fun car and as the only gear head in my family we have never owned any kind of sports car til' now. (BTW for some background. I am 19, a junior in college, and my brother is a senior in high school)
My brother just wrecked his first car, and while we waited for Allstate to finish up our claim, my brother and I began searching for his next car. He wanted something practical, with 4 seats, plenty of trunk space, and it needed to be fun, but he particularly wanted a Civic Si. With a 8k budget we quickly found out that people that sell their Civic Si's think they are worth much more than they really are. By much more I mean their car according to KBB is worth 7 or 8k private sell and they are asking for 10 or 11k. So we quickly took that off our list. So then we began to look at any coupe or sporty sedan that would meet his needs.
I personally drive a 2006 Toyota Corolla S (It's an Automatic; not what you call an enthusiast's car, I purchased it before I became a gear head, but this car still has a special place in my heart lol) but for our car search I first suggested a Toyota Celica, Mazda3 (hatch or sedan,) Honda Prelude, and of course the Mazda3. In the midst of the search I came across a white Miata.
It was described as garage kept, well maintained, with 52k miles, with no damage on the paint, a clean car fax, with only one picture of the car and the seller's location was in a wealthy neighborhood in our city so I immediately assumed the owner was an older man, which was a good sign. All for $4500. I thought it's description was too good to be true (as that happens quite often on Craigslist)
So I mentioned it to my brother and I got the following responses "The Miata is too small... I hate convertibles... its a girl car... its too old... its UGLY... its dangerous and extremely unpractical, it has 2 seats.... that makes no sense for me to get that" and there were very many other similar statements he sent me over text while I desperately tried to convince him to consider it. So I gave up trying to convince him, after all, he wanted something with more than 2 seats, more space, and bigger.
Well the next day he calls me and begins to tell me how he called the guy about it, where just the day before he swore he would never want it (he later told me how he looked up videos of the Miata and reviews which made him consider it.) It turned out that the seller was in his mid 70s who had two hip surgeries and could no longer shift gears easily and he had just purchased a new 2014 Automatic Miata. My brother told me he seemed very disappointed that he had to sell his Miata and that it was more fun to him than the new one, but he needed to get rid of it. So my brother got a date and time for a meeting, my brother doesn't know how to drive stick, so I had to go with him.
Sadly the seller ended up having to move the date back a day because he forgot he had orchestra tickets for that afternoon, so it was now on a friday. I was very disappointed to hear that because I was then unable to make it to the test drive because I was in Atlanta for an engineering competition, so my father had to go with my brother. *Side note* My father is all about practicality and was immediately against purchasing this vehicle. He said there was no way he was going to be ok with my brother buying a 25 year old car, let alone a 2 seater, but he went anyways.
To shorten the story, they went to the test drive they were extremely impressed with the car. My father drives a 1992 Mazda B2600i which he has babied and told me the Miata was in better shape than his 23 year old truck (which immediately surprised me) My father was so impressed that while my brother went on a ride with the seller, he told my mother "If Trenton doesn't buy this car, we're buying it." My brother ended up liking the car and bought it for $3750 after talking him down from $4500 because the first owner of the car took the AC out of the car and being in Savannah, GA you need AC when its 90+% humidity and 100 degrees even with a convertable.
Now how amazing is it? It's a 1990, just below 52k miles, practically mint condition amazing! It has a clean car fax, not a single scratch on the paint (not exaggerating,) everything works, it's bone stock (even has the original radio,) the soft top looks brand new (did I mention it's original,) the list goes on and This Miata is no crack pipe at a mere $3750.
I may be too excited about this car, but I think its an amazing find. Considering most Miatas are modified in some way and that many of them are over valued (example: theres a 1990 on savannah.craigslist with 110k miles asking for $5200)
It's my family's first sports car. It's a classic (going to get GA vintage tag) AND since my brother has to learn stick, we traded cars while he's learning, and I get to drive it for the next week :) We already ordered a roll bar for it as my parents made it a requirement for my brother to have one, but why wouldn't you want one?
Did I mention I'm excited? and its not even my car lol.