[NA] Aunt is selling her Miata, should I be scared and what should I offer? [Archive] (2024)

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KingSpoon

9th July 2021, 10:57

Hey Miata.net

First post here, but I usually frequent the ft86club forums since I have a '14 BRZ. My aunt is finally selling her '95 Miata and I'm first in line to make an offer on it. I think it's a good deal, but I was wondering your guys opinion since you have more experience and knowledge on the platform. I'm getting rid of my BRZ and getting something more practical, so the Miata will be a summer car and one that I do mods and work on.

Pros:
-96k miles
-Little rusty, but I live in new England and the rockers aren't rusted through. Looks like mostly surface rust
-New clutch
-Okay looking paint, except for on the trunk
-Comes with hardtop and softtop, no leaking on the hard top, slight leak on the soft top
-Run and drives
-Ran for an hour and a half (after being jumped) with no issue. AC works, no overheating, revved fine. Was able to pull it up and back 10 feet in the driveway.
-Never driven by a child or slammed on the ground

Cons:
-Ticking noise in engine. I know this is common on Miatas and it's probably the lifters, but it was loud.
-Hasn't been run in a year. Dead battery, shot tires, needs an oil change bad
-Needs a lot of TLC. It is DIRTY, but a detail should do it.
-Clear coat peeling on the trunk
-Gas gauge either doesn't work or it didn't have gas. Is this a hard fix?
-Gas cap doesn't open. Lever goes about halfway and then is stuck. We got the cap open by prying a little with a screwdriver.
-Speakers in seats are shot
-Wasn't able to actually test drive because of the above mentioned

I was thinking of offering her 2200. Is this fair? Main things I'm worried about are a shot motor (ticking noise) and not being started in forever.

Thanks in advance,
Jeremy

maarp

9th July 2021, 11:03

The hard top alone makes the risk almost bearable, should the car not pan out. Sounds like a pretty dicey situation otherwise. Dealing with relatives is the worst.

And...

:welcome:

3MiataFamily

9th July 2021, 11:04

Where in CT ?

Things a little hectic with family issues the next few days but feel free to PM me and we can talk..a 15 minute conversation is much easier.

hal1

9th July 2021, 12:01

the Miata will be a summer car and one that I do mods and work on.

Let's concentrate on the 'work on' part before worrying about the mods. Do aesthetics matter to you? Many people here (many of whom are much more able than I am) are happy and capable of the mechanical work, but shy away from body work.

If you're looking for something to enjoy for several years, I'd pass on this one and find a decent $5,000 with higher mileage but in good mechanical shape. If you're looking for a project car to sit in the garage and work on, and drive it occasionally, then I'd say maybe $$3,000 which would be $$1,500 net to you if you sell off the HT. Even if you keep the HT you still own the value of the car + HT.

If the top alone is worth $1,500, I couldn't take advantage of a relative and offer her a $700 for the car - net, after selling off the HT.

As an extreme example, if my Sister-in-law offered to sell me her 10,000 mile MSM, I wouldn't feel good if I offered her $12,000 even she was happy with accepting that

My $.02, YMMV

01SEBRG

9th July 2021, 12:39

I'd ask her what she might want for it and go from there....

Hal, better you have your SIL's car for $12,000, than somebody else...

KingSpoon

9th July 2021, 13:04

Where in CT ?

Things a little hectic with family issues the next few days but feel free to PM me and we can talk..a 15 minute conversation is much easier.

I'm in Wallingford, car's in north haven. I'd love to chat sometime! pm me

KingSpoon

9th July 2021, 13:09

Let's concentrate on the 'work on' part before worrying about the mods. Do aesthetics matter to you? Many people here (many of whom are much more able than I am) are happy and capable of the mechanical work, but shy away from body work.

Aesthetics do matter to me a lot, but I think the body and paint is in pretty good shape, except for the clear coat on the trunk. Not a lot of rust, the rockers were in good shape too, where that drain hole is.

She said she values it at 2800-3500, but it really needs work. So I figured 2200 wasn't a super lowball. Plus I know she would counter

tom4416

9th July 2021, 13:12

It sounds like a typical beater owned by a non-enthusiast and allowed to wilt away with time. Bringing something like that back isn't a chore for the weak of heart and you need garage space and tools to make it happen properly. We all kind of generally agree that a running, driving Miata but with major issues is worth $1500. Given that the hardtop is also worth at least $1,500 (and pristine ones in the proper color are now bringing $2,000) then a $3,000 offer wouldn't be taking advantage of either side of the transaction. If auntie is better off financially than you are and you are close to her heart, then $2,500 would be an okay number. I think $2,200 is taking advantage of the relationship.

Diamond Dave

9th July 2021, 13:19

I was thinking of offering her 2200. Is this fair? Main things I'm worried about are a shot motor (ticking noise) and not being started in forever.

The motor doesn't sound shot, but it does sound like a happily owned, deferred maintenance car. If you can get it fo $2200, you'd be doing great.

As it sits, (<100K miles with HT), it's probably a $7K car to the rest of the world with how zany Miata pricing has gotten.

KingSpoon

9th July 2021, 13:32

It sounds like a typical beater owned by a non-enthusiast and allowed to wilt away with time. Bringing something like that back isn't a chore for the weak of heart and you need garage space and tools to make it happen properly. We all kind of generally agree that a running, driving Miata but with major issues is worth $1500. Given that the hardtop is also worth at least $1,500 (and pristine ones in the proper color are now bringing $2,000) then a $3,000 offer wouldn't be taking advantage of either side of the transaction. If auntie is better off financially than you are and you are close to her heart, then $2,500 would be an okay number. I think $2,200 is taking advantage of the relationship.

I think you're right. I under valued the hardtop, so i think i'll start off with $2500 offer. It's not really pristine condition for a hardtop, a couple spots of paint chipping and like a half inch where the weather stripping came off, but like i said no leaks with the HT.

Aesthetics do matter to me a lot, but I think the body and paint is in pretty good shape, except for the clear coat on the trunk. Not a lot of rust, the rockers were in good shape too, where that drain hole is.

She said she values it at 2800-3500 but it really needs work. So I figured 2200 wasn't a super lowball. Plus I know she would counter

This is not only fair ($3500 given it has an HT) but appropriate for a family price. $2200 is low ball. Running miata with HTs easily sell for $5k+.

If she's a "good" Aunt, don't screw her with a low ball "offer". Treat her with the respect and love she deserves and pay the right price.

If she beat you as a child, when mom&dad left you with her while they went out for dinners, then offer $2k, sell the HT for $1500-$2000, and rub it in her face.

b.

MXander-5

9th July 2021, 15:50

This is not only fair ($3500 given it has an HT) but appropriate for a family price. $2200 is low ball. Running miata with HTs easily sell for $5k+.

If she's a "good" Aunt, don't screw her with a low ball "offer". Treat her with the respect and love she deserves and pay the right price.

If she beat you as a child, when mom&dad left you with her while they went out for dinners, then offer $2k, sell the HT for $1500-$2000, and rub it in her face.

b.

:rofl::rofl::rofl:

jim dreiling

9th July 2021, 16:59

Aesthetics do matter to me a lot, but I think the body and paint is in pretty good shape, except for the clear coat on the trunk. Not a lot of rust, the rockers were in good shape too, where that drain hole is.

She said she values it at 2800-3500, but it really needs work. So I figured 2200 wasn't a super lowball. Plus I know she would counter

If you know she'll counter, start with a lower initial offer. Personally, it doesn't sound like it's worth more than $1200 - $1500, to me. I bought a similar 95, in 2015, for $500 (a zero rust California car).

hal1

9th July 2021, 17:08

If she beat you as a child, when mom&dad left you with her while they went out for dinners,
b.

Hopefully there was no Uncle Ernie either

KingSpoon

9th July 2021, 17:30

If she beat you as a child, when mom&dad left you with her while they went out for dinners, then offer $2k, sell the HT for $1500-$2000, and rub it in her face.

b.

Definitely did not beat me as a child, thanks for saving me from a family argument lol. Anyway if I’ve learned one thing from this thread, it’s that I undervalued the crap out of the hard top.

sdcrjohn

9th July 2021, 19:31

As usual, Bob and others have offered sage advice.

Btw, did I miss it in the text, what year it is?

KingSpoon

9th July 2021, 19:36

As usual, Bob and others have offered sage advice.

Btw, did I miss it in the text, what year it is?

Nope, think I didn't mention. It's a '95

RND1

9th July 2021, 19:56

Little rusty, but I live in new England and the rockers aren't rusted through. Looks like mostly surface rust
-

The value entirely depends on this statement above. Would be best to have 3MiataFamily take a look w you or at least get the car up on a lift to do a thorough inspection of the rust. Good luck - sounds like a fun project.

The Driver

9th July 2021, 20:02

If you know she'll counter, start with a lower initial offer. Personally, it doesn't sound like it's worth more than $1200 - $1500, to me. I bought a similar 95, in 2015, for $500 (a zero rust California car).

Jim, in this market, a totaled non running NA is a $1,000.

sdcrjohn

9th July 2021, 20:31

A 94 would be better, but nothing really wrong with a 1995.

That makes it a 1.8, which is more powerful than the early 1.6. A 95 would have some of the best chassis bracing on a stock NA. I think that 95 still had the actual oil pressure gauge, instead of just a warning light.

What color, and does the HT match?

As usual, Bob and others have offered sage advice.

Btw, did I miss it in the text, what year it is?

Nope, think I didn't mention. It's a '95

KingSpoon

9th July 2021, 20:46

A 94 would be better, but nothing really wrong with a 1995.

That makes it a 1.8, which is more powerful than the early 1.6. A 95 would have some of the best chassis bracing on a stock NA. I think that 95 still had the actual oil pressure gauge, instead of just a warning light.

What color, and does the HT match?

White, and hard top matches. Soft top is black. and yeah it does have the gauge

hal1

9th July 2021, 21:34

The more I think about it the more I say give her the $3,000 - $3,500 she thinks it's worth, sell the HT, and you're left with a running $2,000 Miata - there's very little downside. If it ends up being a turd sell it for $2,200 for your efforts and call it a day

3MiataFamily

9th July 2021, 22:37

I'm in Wallingford, car's in north haven. I'd love to chat sometime! pm me

Check your PM

Myah's Daddy

9th July 2021, 23:41

White Miatas didn’t clearcoat to fail so that failing probably means accident.
The engine ticking isn’t an issue.
The sills don’t normally get surface rust. They rust from the inside out so if you see it what you don’t see is 10x worse.
I wouldn’t want this car and would offer her all the best in selling it. If you know you will have a NA or NB Miata one day offer $1500 for the hardtop and she can keep the car.

3MiataFamily

9th July 2021, 23:57

Just spent an hour on the phone with the OP

He has been properly enlightened...nice young man.

huesmann

10th July 2021, 06:43

$2200? That's like buying a hard top and getting a free Miata thrown in.

jim dreiling

11th July 2021, 16:31

Jim, in this market, a totaled non running NA is a $1,000.

Not to me.

The Driver

11th July 2021, 16:32

Not to me.

Because you're not an NA buyer.

jim dreiling

11th July 2021, 17:36

Because you're not an NA buyer.

I'm not a buyer of anything with inflated prices. I have owned an NA, while I have/had my NC.

garrech

11th July 2021, 21:45

A 94 would be better, but nothing really wrong with a 1995.

I'm curious, what makes a 94 better than a 95?

eddielasvegas

11th July 2021, 23:06

Nothing of real consequence.

The '94 does have a real oil gauge if that blows your skirt.

For me, any of the NAs are great and it's really about the price versus condition.

Eddie

I'm curious, what makes a 94 better than a 95?

The Driver

12th July 2021, 00:31

I'm curious, what makes a 94 better than a 95?

Nothing of real consequence.

The '94 does have a real oil gauge if that blows your skirt.

For me, any of the NAs are great and it's really about the price versus condition.

Eddie

The oils pressure gage is easily retrofitted unto the 95-97 cars. If heard this correctly, the 94 had the Torsen available in every flavor regarding of package.

sdcrjohn

12th July 2021, 07:46

As Eddie said, nothing really. The 94 was the first year for the 1.8. I’ve just been of the opinion that, 1994 was a high water mark for the NA’s.

I'm curious, what makes a 94 better than a 95?

tom4416

13th July 2021, 07:45

1994 was still OBD-I, important to some but the 96+ cars with OBD-II were able to squeak out more HP because of the tuning abilities afforded by better controls. Last year you were able to change out the airbag module without removing the dash although you can't find the modules so not sure how important that is any longer. As mentioned, real OPG for what that's worth.

huesmann

13th July 2021, 08:03

But also single-year airbag computer...

jim dreiling

13th July 2021, 15:47

But also single-year airbag computer...

? My 95 didn't have any air bags. Were they optional on some models?

The Driver

13th July 2021, 15:59

? My 95 didn't have any air bags. Were they optional on some models?

Federally mandated after 1994. Steering wheel and dash, which is why tons of NA8 people swap into NA6 non airbag dashes.

jim dreiling

13th July 2021, 16:20

Federally mandated after 1994. Steering wheel and dash, which is why tons of NA8 people swap into NA6 non airbag dashes.

I suppose mine may have been swapped, but the original owner I bought the car from was a mechanical moron, so I can't imagine that he changed it. :dunno:

tom4416

13th July 2021, 20:31

? My 95 didn't have any air bags. Were they optional on some models?

I don't know when they debuted in Canada but know some of the early cars there did not have any airbags. But even the NA6 in the US had a drivers side airbag, there was never a US bound car without an airbag.

jim dreiling

14th July 2021, 14:22

I don't know when they debuted in Canada but know some of the early cars there did not have any airbags. But even the NA6 in the US had a drivers side airbag, there was never a US bound car without an airbag.

That's funny because neither the original, rotten rubber/vinyl covered steering wheel, or the salvage leather steering wheel that replaced it, were equipped with air bags.

The Driver

14th July 2021, 15:42

That's funny because neither the original, rotten rubber/vinyl covered steering wheel, or the salvage leather steering wheel that replaced it, were equipped with air bags.

NAs can been driven without an airbag, but the hole in it will look just plain weird.

jim dreiling

14th July 2021, 15:46

NAs can been driven without an airbag, but the hole in it will look just plain weird.

There were no holes, airbags, or wires for airbags.

The Driver

14th July 2021, 16:06

There were no holes, airbags, or wires for airbags.

Sorry, I don't see how that's possible. Even the 89 models had airbags in the steering wheel. And the same steering wheels used in 1989 where still used in 1997.

jim dreiling

15th July 2021, 13:30

Sorry, I don't see how that's possible. Even the 89 models had airbags in the steering wheel. And the same steering wheels used in 1989 where still used in 1997.

That's why I asked, I'm trying to figure it out. I only had the car for a short time (9 months from picking it up as a basket case, to the time I sold it, after fixing it up, and tripling the money I had in it).

tom4416

15th July 2021, 19:11

That's why I asked, I'm trying to figure it out. I only had the car for a short time (9 months from picking it up as a basket case, to the time I sold it, after fixing it up, and tripling the money I had in it).

I can actually see someone ordering a Canadian spec steering wheel to eliminate the airbag. Those early airbags deployed with full force and in a small car like a Miata, could pack a wallop. In reality, if you were a faithful wearer of the safety belt combo, you were probably safer without the airbag. Even with it disconnected, some people may have felt uncomfortable having a device that could explosively deploy sitting right in front of them.

jim dreiling

16th July 2021, 02:31

I can actually see someone ordering a Canadian spec steering wheel to eliminate the airbag. Those early airbags deployed with full force and in a small car like a Miata, could pack a wallop. In reality, if you were a faithful wearer of the safety belt combo, you were probably safer without the airbag. Even with it disconnected, some people may have felt uncomfortable having a device that could explosively deploy sitting right in front of them.

Than I guess that the salvage leather replacement wheel may have been Canadian also. Just seems funny that they were both in SoCal.

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[NA] Aunt is selling her Miata, should I be scared and what should I offer? [Archive] (2024)

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