Last post on Mar 06, 2008 at 9:56 AM
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Classic Cars, Coupe, Convertible, Truck, Sedan, Wagon
#9 of 38 Re: I'll start off -- (bumpy)
Feb 04, 2008 (1:39 pm)
"...the '87-88 Nissan 200SX SE with the V6..."
I think finding an unmolested one in decent shape would be difficult. How about a late '80s 300Z turbo? There's a decent supply of these at reasonable prices.
#10 of 38 Re: I'll start off -- (bumpy) [hpmctorque]
Feb 04, 2008 (2:02 pm)
300ZX turbos of the '80s were relatively slow. For a couple of thousand dollars more, in a straight line a 1990 NA 300ZX would leave it pretty far behind and on a track would leave the old Turbo in a smoldering pile. For less than $10K, you can get a 1990 TT, which is way more car than a C4.
RX-7 Turbo II's weren't much faster than a 300ZX Turbo of the day and aren't known for reliability. They didn't have the simplicity, charm and driving feel of the first generation cars or the perfomance of the third generation cars. The third generation cars are a decent buy, as long as you reserve the cash to replace the engine and turbos ever 50K or so, which kind of keeps it from being a bargain (in the way that a Maserati BiTurbo is no bargain).
The Supra Turbo of the '80s was a 3600 lb boulevardier. I like these, but don't confuse them as being anywhere near the league of the Supra that followed. The last Supra TTs offer 110% of the performance of the last 300ZX TTs at two to three times the price of the Z. No bargain there.
MR2 Supercharged is a fun little go cart. Cute and quaint in an outdated sort of way, and not particularly fast or well sorted but still a ton of fun for the $. Similar comments go for a CRX Si, but the CRX has some extra functionality benefits.
For performance for the dollar, it is hard to beat a C4 (even with their cheap interiors and poor reliability).
I'll nominate an '86 944 Turbo which costs a little more than a C4, but also offers a little more in the way of engineering and quality.
For pure driving fun for the dollar, it is hard to beat a '99 Miata for $7K.
#11 of 38 Re: I'll start off -- (bumpy) [lemmer]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Feb 04, 2008 (6:35 pm)
Shoot you can buy an early 90s Miata for DIRT...and you get a cute, good handling two-seater that doesn't look THAT much different than a 2008 car.
I'd agree, early Miatas are a STEAL right now. Once they start to die off, they'll go up in value the way MGBs did once the hundreds of thousands of them made, were whittled down by accident and neglect.
944 Turbos are AWESOME cars and if well sorted and well driven will give a new Porsche 911 fits on a tight racecourse. But 944 Turbos aren't too cheap.....I'd say "bargain" but not STEAL. For a really nice one you can pay $15K on up.
I think the OLDER 300ZXs (83-89) are pretty darn cheap but they are the "old style", and are heavy, kinda porky cars to drive. I'd say a "bargain" but no STEAL for what you get--which is pretty boring machinery.
The very last Mazda Twin Turbo was a seriously fast car and should probably be able to beat any C4 or 300ZX turbo, but not by a lot. But really, is that 1/2 a second worth the extra $10K + you'd pay? Don't think so. And the car is a hand grenade with a loose pin, you got that right.
How 'bout the Tercel 4X4 wagon? These are now worth about $500 bucks on a good day. A roomy, reliable Japanese wagon with great fuel mileage and 4X4 when you need it? Seems a STEAL to me!
#12 of 38 Geeze...
Feb 05, 2008 (6:38 am)
...funny how you can buy an early 1990s Miata dirt cheap these days. When they were new, they were so popular people were paying over MSRP to get one.
There's somebody at work who has a vehicle called a Toyota Corolla All-Trac. I guess this was an early attempt at what we now call cross-overs.
#13 of 38 Re: Geeze... [lemko]
Feb 05, 2008 (8:38 am)
There's somebody at work who has a vehicle called a Toyota Corolla All-Trac.
That would be this one. There were quite a few of those Japanese 4x4 wagons in the late '80s, but the appreciating yen and the Ford Explorer pretty much killed them off.
Toyota also had an All-Trac Tercel, Previa, Celica, and a Camry wagon and sedan. One of those manual Camry sedans with a 3S-GTE swap would make for just about the ultimate sleeper.
#14 of 38 Re: Geeze... [bumpy]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Feb 05, 2008 (8:55 am)
I think even a Celica All Trac turbo!
The Toyota All Tracs seem to bring a lot more money than the Tercel 4X4, so not such a steal if you have to pay $3K-$4K for a 20 year old Japanese car.
Maybe the Tercels are cheaper because they are manual 4X4, not AWD. The Tercels were like those very early Subarus in that regard, you had to mash them into 4X4. But they didn't suck valves like Subarus loved to do.
#15 of 38 Re: Geeze... [Mr_Shiftright]
Feb 05, 2008 (9:41 am)
The Celica All-Trac was a turbo. No one expects a turbo AWD Camry. I wonder if anyone's ever tried to cram an All-Trac setup into a '90s MR2 Turbo?
The early-mid 80s Tercel was a regular old manual 4x4 system, but the generation after that got the All-Trac setup with the electronic locking diffy and all that fun stuff.
#16 of 38 Funny
Feb 06, 2008 (9:01 am)
you should mention cheap Miatas.
I had a hankering for one when they came out in 1989, but the size was just too small for a daily driver. Well, I guess I shrank a bit in the past 19 years(has it really been around that long), but when I tried one on recently I found it tolerable for a weekend\commuter car.
So I ended up buying a '97 M-edition with 85k miles for under $5k. It is in pretty decent shape wit a few nicks and scratches but nothing I can't live with. I thin the market has hit bottom on these and can only go up as some people actually desire the first generation more than the later years.
I also checked out the C-4 Corvettes, I actually like the styling on them. Anything under $6k had over 100k miles and rattled and squeaked. The Miata by comparison is very quite.
Feb 06, 2008 (9:43 am)
Yeah you need to go after any used C4 with your socket set, bits of foam padding, silicone lubricant, wedges, pads, and crow bar to get the dashboard symphony to quiet down.
#18 of 38 Re: Funny [Mr_Shiftright]
Feb 26, 2008 (2:21 am)
I like C4s, but I can't look past the ugly interiors.
With Porsche 912 prices going up, MGB GTs are starting to look pretty good to me.
240Zs seem to be either high priced, rust buckets or both. In comparison, late '70s RX7s are starting to look cheap.
The rise in early 911 prices seems to have carried forward into the crappy engined 74-77 models. SCs don't seem to be going up yet even though they are much better cars. I can't figure out that one.