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Old 04-08-2013, 10:37 AM   #1
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Non-Porsche question about an RX-7-Would you?

Hello. Well I have and love my 2000 Boxster 2.7L.

I was not planning on buying another car anytime soon and I am saving up for a wedding and grad school(without taking loans)

A friend of mine is the original owner of a 1993 Mazda RX-7 R1 w/MT. The R1 is the highest trim and rarest U.S. version of the RX-7. 160,000 miles on body and 36,000 miles on 3rd Mazda reman rotary engine. It is in great condition inside and out but it has a dent in the rear fender about 5 inches in diameter. I know someone who can fix it for $600 and take care of the rust around the inner wheel well for an additional $250.

So my friend is willing to sell it to me for $8000, which is a steal. These typically sell for $12,000 in it's current condition. I already saw the car in person and my friend daily drives it to work so I know it runs well.
After title and taxes and first year insurance and inspection, it will be a $10,000 car.

It has an exhaust system and lowering springs (My Box is lower with its lowering springs). Everything else is stock.

I plan to test drive it this week. If it blows me away, I might sell my Box. If it feels like the Boxster, I would probably buy it to drive it for a year, then sell it with hopes of making a profit or breaking even.

I would likely take a loan to buy the car and try to pay it off asap. So if you were in my situation, and if the RX-7 is on your bucket list of cars to own, would you?

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Old 04-08-2013, 11:15 AM   #2
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How many miles on your car, and how long have you owned it? It doesn't sound wise financially. You're trading a "known" for a high mileage unknown. I love the RX-7, but it's 7 years older, the engines aren't know for longevity. Friend or not, there's a reason he's "letting it go" cheaply. The 3rd engine? He wants out before #4 !
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:25 AM   #3
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Yeah check my math but I think 160,K divided by 3= 53K per engine rebuild- 36K= 17K before the next rebuild is due. The transmissions have durability problems also & the R-1s are known for punishing rides so how long are you going to want to drive a lowered R-1 on Philly streets? I'm guessing your attraction is the 250HP which equals the Box S, solution: keep what you have & buy a 3.2 for your Box!
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:28 AM   #4
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It s a rare car for sure and so far, the fastest RX. I think the answer for me and you can only be found during a test drive.
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:31 AM   #5
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How many miles on your car, and how long have you owned it? It doesn't sound wise financially. You're trading a "known" for a high mileage unknown. I love the RX-7, but it's 7 years older, the engines aren't know for longevity. Friend or not, there's a reason he's "letting it go" cheaply. The 3rd engine? He wants out before #4 !
Well he is well off so I don't think he is worried about a $3000 reman engine from Mazda with installation (yes it only costs $3000). He owns a Corvette Z06 racecar with roll cage, new 2013 Cooper S, TPC twin turbo Cayman S racecar with rollcage, and two trucks.

My car has 94,500 miles on original engine of course and I had it for 2.5 years. It is not the right time for me to buy a car, but at the same time I will never get a chance like this again. He is selling it for $12,000 on craigslist, but he said he would let me have it for $8000. He is my DE racing instructor and co-worker.
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:46 AM   #6
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A good friend of mine is an RX7 fanatic, and I admit I've always had a soft spot for the entire line, but his are most often than not having some work done on them, so I wouldn't expect it to be a reliable daily driver.
Living in rust free California I have the pleasure of seeing many cars in their golden years, and I rarely see a running RX7 nowadays.
If its on your bucket list though...what the hell, you can always sell it, $8000 isn't really that much for fun little car, even if it spends a lot of garage time.
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:51 AM   #7
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They are beautiful cars but the maintenance would be a pain...

Lots of brittle vacuum lines that could crack (yeah...I know...same as any old car) and the fact that the engines rarely go past 50-60k miles is a joke. Mazda was lucky the car was not recalled under the lemon law or something. All that aside, I think you said it best yourself "It is not the right time for me to buy a car". Without knowing all your financial details, hopes, dreams, etc. and based on the info you provided, I would pass. I personally do not have any friends that would give me a $2-4k discount on something they are selling just because I am their friend...those kind of deals when they go sour can destroy whatever friendship you had to begin with.
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:55 AM   #8
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Yeah check my math but I think 160,K divided by 3= 53K per engine rebuild- 36K= 17K before the next rebuild is due. The transmissions have durability problems also & the R-1s are known for punishing rides so how long are you going to want to drive a lowered R-1 on Philly streets? I'm guessing your attraction is the 250HP which equals the Box S, solution: keep what you have & buy a 3.2 for your Box!
Same power, but according to different automotive magazines and websites, the 0-60mph time of the RX-7 is 5.0 seconds. Some say 4.9 and some say 5.1.

For the Boxster S, the 0-60mph time ranges from 5.7 seconds to 5.9 seconds from different sources.

I do actually track my Boxster so the times are important to me.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:03 PM   #9
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Reading through this, you seem to have made up your mind that you are going to buy the RX7, but my 2cents.....

I haven't looked at on in a long time, but they seem to be different breeds of vehicles. While the RX7 is sure to be fun, and maybe faster 0-60, I don't think you will have that "perma-grin" that one gets from the Boxster. You will also be losing the convertible, which to me is a big no-no.

Either way, enjoy the ride.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:09 PM   #10
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The RX7 has one advantage over the Boxster... it weighs less. Everything else heavily favors the Porsche. That said, we want what we want.

Would I sell my car and choose an RX7? No sir.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:32 PM   #11
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I'm leaning towards keeping the Boxster and waiting for an RX-7 because it is not the right time to buy. But i'm worried that when it is time to buy, I won't be able to find a good one anywhere. This one has all paperwork, history, and it has been garaged most of its life. It is also a somewhat famous car in the area as this car won more than a few SCCA competitions back in the 90's.

But honestly, I'm not a convertible person. I bought the Boxster because of the handling, feedback, and engine sound. (Dream Car=Cayman R) After 2.5 years, I probably put the top down 5 or 6 times. (One time was just to see if the top worked, one time was for a college project where I was wind testing a cap, and the rest of the times my fiance asked me to put it down)
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:32 PM   #12
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I've owned two RX7s in the past, and I'll be the first one to say it is not a boxster. It never left me with a permagrin even though it was fun to drive. When my last one was broken in to and they stole my 5K stereo system, rather than sink any more money in to it I gave it away to my brother in law. Never missed it. I can't say that would be true of the boxster.

The bottom line though is get what you want, just make sure it is as enjoyable as what you are giving up.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:47 PM   #13
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I think you have already convinced yourself to buy the RX-7. Are you planning on keeping your Boxster, also? Are you sure that your finances can handle two exotic, but old cars?

You stated that you want to save for a wedding and grad school (without taking loans). My advice, stay on that course and be happy with what you already have. Keep your Boxster and forego the RX-7. There will always be other cars over your lifetime that you will crave for. This RX-7 is not an investment. DO NOT take a loan out for something that you don't need.
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:57 PM   #14
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I always think of the analogy of the rx-7 as a marathon runner's heart. Fast, powerful, and strong during it's rime, but atrophied and worn after a short time compared to it's peers. Every time I go to a friend's house, there are two rx-7s in his neighborhood with engine problems that have sat in a driveway for years. Would I want an rx-7 if given to me? Yes, but not the constant rebuilds and procedures on starting and shutting of car to avoid flooding. Ironic to say on a forum that has had it's engine problems as well, but my .02.
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Old 04-08-2013, 04:54 PM   #15
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I love the rx7. It is an amazing car and very rare. Would I trade in my box for an rx7 well i would say no but if i had the opportunity to buy one and keep the box I would. The price is very good and if it comes time to make the money back, selling price would be in the $15,000.

On top of this replacement parts are cheaper for the rx7 then they are for the box. Right know my parts bill is growing by the week as i find more things that need to be changed with my box.

Also you said your saving for a wedding. So I would suggest running this through your other half and see how she feels about it. If she aproves then take that car immediately. No second guessing.

And at the very least, its a bucket list car. I don't know how old you are Project but opportunities like this come by only on rare occasions.
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Old 04-08-2013, 05:10 PM   #16
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I had a 1986 RX7 GXL. It was a great car. Really smooth power band and a really nice suspension that was great on windy roads and high cruising as well. I missed it over the past few years....up until I got the Boxster that is
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:35 PM   #17
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Also you said your saving for a wedding. So I would suggest running this through your other half and see how she feels about it. If she aproves then take that car immediately. No second guessing.
I say spend the honeymoon money on the RX7 and see what the girl says. If she's on board, no second guessing (on whether or not to marry..). If she's not down, well the Mazda can always sit in her newly vacated stall in the garage. I call that a win-win!
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:05 PM   #18
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I've owned 2 Rx-7s. I know these cars pretty well. The engines on the FD (3rd Gen) Rx is under alot of temperature and stress. They usually last for about 40-60,000 miles before heat takes it's toll on the vacuum hoses, rotor housings and apex seals. The 3rd engine may be about middle aged. They aren't expensive engines, but if you're not a diy'er, you'll have to find one of the rarest of rare automotive mechanics, the rotary engine specialist. Most mechanics won't touch a rotary engine, which is silly because they are soooo simple, but they are afraid of what they don't know.

160k is high mileage for these cars. The bodies are thin so they'll ding easily and the paint wasn't great. The interior plastics are fragile, lots of parts break here and there. If you get 20mpg, you're doing well and it will consume about a quart of oil every couple of thousand miles.

So those are the down sides. On the up side, it's a fantastic car to drive. They have very honest handling and steering. Very high limits, and a fantastic engine and transmission. The suspension is all adjustable aluminum double wishbones, beautiful.

$8k is too much for a car with that many miles and the third engine, even the R1, which is more desireable. It's a $6k car.

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Old 04-09-2013, 11:04 AM   #19
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I've owned 2 Rx-7s. I know these cars pretty well. The engines on the FD (3rd Gen) Rx is under alot of temperature and stress. They usually last for about 40-60,000 miles before heat takes it's toll on the vacuum hoses, rotor housings and apex seals. The 3rd engine may be about middle aged. They aren't expensive engines, but if you're not a diy'er, you'll have to find one of the rarest of rare automotive mechanics, the rotary engine specialist. Most mechanics won't touch a rotary engine, which is silly because they are soooo simple, but they are afraid of what they don't know.

160k is high mileage for these cars. The bodies are thin so they'll ding easily and the paint wasn't great. The interior plastics are fragile, lots of parts break here and there. If you get 20mpg, you're doing well and it will consume about a quart of oil every couple of thousand miles.

So those are the down sides. On the up side, it's a fantastic car to drive. They have very honest handling and steering. Very high limits, and a fantastic engine and transmission. The suspension is all adjustable aluminum double wishbones, beautiful.

$8k is too much for a car with that many miles and the third engine, even the R1, which is more desireable. It's a $6k car.
All of this.

I had a friend buy the same RX-7 a few years ago with about 45,000 miles. He only got 5,000 miles out of it before it started leaking copious amounts of oil. He was not a DIYer and searched far and wide for a rotary engine mechanic to no avail. It has been sitting unused in his garage ever since.

I wouldn't touch an RX-7 with a 10-foot pole unless I had large amounts of time and disposable income. It's about the worst car I can think of to try to "flip" for profit
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Old 04-09-2013, 12:20 PM   #20
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I'd say buy the RX-7, get that novelty out of your system and when you find yourself wishing for the Boxster again, sell the RX-7, then take the money and UPGRADE to a Boxster S and never look back.

Its win-win that way, and there are always enough Boxsters for sale that you can wait and get what you want within a 6 month period or so.

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