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Thread: My latest car is on the road: and it's a MI - - A!

  1. #1
    Administrator MetroMPG's Avatar
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    My latest car is on the road: and it's a MI - - A!

    No, it's not a M I C R A. But it's close... 3 out of 5 letters match!

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    M I A T A. 1990.

    It's a sad and neglected turd. I picked it up for $750. On the road for a few dollars under $1k.

    It had rusted brakes and flat-spotted tires from being parked in a back yard for a couple of years, but the worst problem was the floor. It was never winter driven, but the ratty convertible top leaked, and chronically wet carpet = rusty floors.

    Here's what it looked like by the time I cut back to good metal on the driver's (worst) side:

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    It would have been nice to have a lift to make welding in the new metal easier...

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    Fortunately the unibody hard points were OK, so I eventually got it patched up. And after working on the brakes, replacing a sway bar end link, the radiator (from my Metro/Swift junk pile), and a few light bulbs, it passed inspection. It finally went on the road a couple of weeks ago.

    And even though it's a beater of a car, it's still very fun to drive: it's super lightweight (around 2k lbs), with fast-ratio steering, RWD (of course), and a hilariously direct factory short shifter.

    I was hooked when I drove a relative's brand new Miata backin 1990, just like this one. It only took 27 years for the price to come down enough to fit my budget!

    If you ever get the chance, I highly recommend trying one.


        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2015 Micra S manual: 5.0 L/100 km ... 56.5 mpg (Imp) ... 20.0 km/L ... 47.0 mpg (US) ...


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    Good luck cleaning it up! It'll definitely be worth the effort. I love those 1st gen Miatas with the pop-up headlights. I've considered doing a k24 swapped one but alas, my heart belongs to either the 1st gen Civic or 1st gen Skyline. Oddly enough a 1st gen civic just appeared up here on kijiji but it's in such bad shape they're only asking $300 for it...

    Keep us posted on your build progress! I'd love to see you fully restore the floor and interior.

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    Senior Member Ajijic's Avatar
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    MetroMPG...

    http://www.trilliummiata.ca/ is definitely the club for you to join..I co-foundered this back in the very early 90"s...such wonderful memories!

    http://www.trilliummiata.ca/club/history
    Last edited by Ajijic; 09-16-2017 at 06:51 PM.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2016 Micra Active manual: 6.0 L/100 km ... 46.9 mpg (Imp) ... 16.6 km/L ... 39.0 mpg (US) ...


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    Administrator MetroMPG's Avatar
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    Ajijic - very cool!

    When you originally wrote "in the late 80's" I thought, wow - you must have had one of the very first ones.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2015 Micra S manual: 5.0 L/100 km ... 56.5 mpg (Imp) ... 20.0 km/L ... 47.0 mpg (US) ...


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    Always thought it would be fun to own one of these!

    Are you going to be using it for daily driver duties this winter? or is this going to be for summer cruising?
    N/A Subaru Addict...
    First Nissan Commuter

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    Senior Member Ajijic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
    Ajijic - very cool!

    When you originally wrote "in the late 80's" I thought, wow - you must have had one of the very first ones.
    Not only one of the first, but Geneva called to place my car as Car of the Century in 2000
    ...to exhibit at the CNE

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2016 Micra Active manual: 6.0 L/100 km ... 46.9 mpg (Imp) ... 16.6 km/L ... 39.0 mpg (US) ...


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    Administrator MetroMPG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spacewolf View Post
    Good luck cleaning it up!
    Not to disappoint, but I'm not really planning to clean it up. It's a beater. Just planning to drive & maintain it. Cosmetics are not a big priority! The top is ratty, carpet is ripped, rear quarter is dented, various panels have different shades of red (repainted several times), small rust bubbles on the doors & trunk lid... and I'm OK with all that. It's still fun to drive.

    love those 1st gen Miatas with the pop-up headlights.
    Me too - they look hilarious with the lights on. Cartoonish.

    I'd love to see you fully restore the floor and interior.
    This is as good as it gets:

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        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2015 Micra S manual: 5.0 L/100 km ... 56.5 mpg (Imp) ... 20.0 km/L ... 47.0 mpg (US) ...


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    Administrator MetroMPG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajijic View Post
    Not only one of the first, but Geneva called to place my car as Car of the Century in 2000
    ...to exhibit at the CNE
    That is very cool. The VIN in mine indicates it's the 4000th-something Miata produced.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobaganousch View Post
    Always thought it would be fun to own one of these!
    Do it. One auto writer compared the base Micra S to the Miata. They are similar in some ways (more in design philosophy than actuality). Lemme see if I can find the reference...

    Are you going to be using it for daily driver duties this winter? or is this going to be for summer cruising?
    Summer fun only. This one was never winter driven, and Eastern Ontario salted roads would kill it fast. The reason the floor rusted out was due to perpetually wet carpets from a leaky top.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2015 Micra S manual: 5.0 L/100 km ... 56.5 mpg (Imp) ... 20.0 km/L ... 47.0 mpg (US) ...


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    Administrator MetroMPG's Avatar
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    couple of Micra vs. Miata similarities in reviews

    Found 'em!

    - decent power to weight: "this is first-generation Miata levels of performance – slow, but kinda feels fast."
    Brendan MacAleer - Autos.ca
    Thread: Another Autos.ca Review: Road Trip: $9,998 2015 Nissan Micra S 5-speed


    And another one from Mark Stevenson (Truth About Cars), who takes the Miata comparison MUCH further...

    While my predecessor likened the Micra to the EK Civic, I’m going to take it one step further: The Nissan Micra is a four-door Mazda Miata.

    [...]

    “Miata with four doors? Have you completely lost the plot?” Maybe, but …

    All the important ingredients from the Miata are woven into the Micra’s DNA as well: light weight, just enough power to spin the little front rubber donuts, and the suspension — well, let’s just call it peculiar for now as it needs an explanation all its own.

    The bottom line: The Micra provided the most engaging and fun driving experience I’ve had in at least 12 months, and that includes all the 400+ horsepower cars that have graced my driveway over the same timeframe.
    TTAC: http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/201...y-lilliputian/

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2015 Micra S manual: 5.0 L/100 km ... 56.5 mpg (Imp) ... 20.0 km/L ... 47.0 mpg (US) ...


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    Quote Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
    Not to disappoint, but I'm not really planning to clean it up. It's a beater. Just planning to drive & maintain it. Cosmetics are not a big priority! The top is ratty, carpet is ripped, rear quarter is dented, various panels have different shades of red (repainted several times), small rust bubbles on the doors & trunk lid... and I'm OK with all that. It's still fun to drive.
    Definitely not disappointed! I totally get it haha. My project car is salvage title with a smashed up bumper from a snowstorm. The cosmetics are the last thing I care about on it. Maybe I'll slap a fresh bumper on it someday but mechanical components and driving it hard come first!



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