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Old 02-26-2014, 11:39 AM   #1
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Need car ideas to replace my son's Miata

Everybody is ok, but my son's 95 Miata was destroyed last night in a crash; he was heading eastbound on a 4 lane divided highway and a lady coming in the opposite direction turned left into him.





She was ticketed and is at fault, but I am not sure what sort of value a 95 Miata with almost 200K miles on it is going to be worth. We put a lot of blood sweat and tears into this car over the last year getting it fixed up, new brakes, updated clutch lines and slave cylinder, just got 4 new tires less than 500 miles ago, roll bar, daylight running lights module, rebuilt the shifter with new gaskets and boots, and a lot of other stuff I can't remember right now. Maybe we can buy back the salvage and part it out to help recoup some of the loss.

The officer suggested a Subaru BRZ/Scion FRS, but I told him I didn't think the check would cover it

I don't know if we want another Miata; we love the car but this accident has him shaken up pretty badly. Luckily the other car was a Camry; if it had been something more massive like an SUV I'm not sure if we would have had as good of an outcome.

Any tips on getting back in the saddle, as he is really shaken up. We have an older Tacoma he can use while we get this all sorted out, and maybe he can just take that over. He was really looking forward to coming to Roebling with me in April for his first DE (that is partly why we got the roll bar and the new tires) and I don't know if this will be sorted out in time for that, or if he would be ready by then.

Both airbags deployed, and thankfully at this point is appears to be nothing more than bumps, bruises and sprains.

MR2? AE86 Corolla? RX7? (I would be afraid that would be too powerful and it has its own maintenance challenges, but there is an older convertible in my neighborhood that might be available) Dare I say 944? I am not sure if I could keep up on the maintenance on something like that...

Edit: wow this is a rambling post. And nobody hit the windshield, I guess it is just broken from the distortion of the windshield frame... The back end is fine, the officer said the roll bar probably added a lot of rigidity to the body back there.


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Old 02-26-2014, 11:42 AM   #2
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No Boxster in the cards for him?
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Old 02-26-2014, 11:45 AM   #3
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Wow, I am glad that your son is Ok and indeed he is very lucky that the lady was not driving an SUV...

Early RX-7's are cool or en early 3 Series BMW comes to mind.
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Old 02-26-2014, 11:55 AM   #4
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No Boxster in the cards for him?
Maybe an early 97 or 98... Our budget is more in the $3,000 range
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Old 02-26-2014, 12:01 PM   #5
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Glad it was not any worse & your son is OK. This just happened last night, don't get in a hurry, I imagine he won't mind driving the truck for awhile. Whenever I suffer a setback either vehicularly or personally I try to think of it as a opportunity to upgrade. if you have room to store the wreck consider keeping it to part out. Good time to teach your son how to "rebuild" after a crisis.
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Old 02-26-2014, 12:10 PM   #6
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Wow! Your family is very fortunate. I can't imagine getting that call...

My 24 year old drove a Miata from the time he was 18 until 23. It was a great car and although I worried about him, I'd like to think sports cars sometimes get you out of potential accidents more than the family truckster.

I can't think of many cars in your price range that would be more fun than a Miata but I understand the trepidation of buying another.

Take a deep breath, say a little prayer and give your son another good "Dad Hug"! The rest will work itself out.
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Old 02-26-2014, 12:38 PM   #7
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Perhaps your son has back and neck injuries and is suffering, a good lawyer should get him into 911 territory, perhaps even new.

Just saying that insurance would likely want to settle out of court for at least a used Boxster.
I doubt they'd even blink at a $20K settlement.

First thing I thought when I saw his mangled car is ...Don't sign anything having to do with the accident, not even from the police and get a lawyer to help you settle with insurance.

I not saying to try and cheat the system, but my god it looks like he's lucky to even be alive and we need Sh* drivers like that off the road for everyones sake.

Very glad to hear he's not feeling damaged at the moment and wasn't mortally wounded.

This also bring up a related point that Occupants in Boxster accidents fair much better than most other cars and in a high percentage of accidents walk away unharmed. Good reason for him to consider a Boxster I'd say.
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Old 02-26-2014, 12:53 PM   #8
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Lots of car options so I am not going there.

On the personal front, I am glad to hear everyone is ok. As bad as it sounds, get him back behind the wheel as soon as possible. An accident like that can have "emotional scarring" that could prevent him from wanting to drive. A friend of mine was in a bad accident at 17, freaked out and has never driven again (45 years old now). Granted that accident was his fault, but still an issue.

Good luck, and again glad everyone is OK
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Old 02-26-2014, 12:55 PM   #9
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hmm.. good thing it was frontal impact. Those bolt on roll bars can be disaster if you're hit from behind. The bar will move forward into the cockit.
Some have complained of back injury...

Accidents are one reason I stopped using the Miata as a daily driver.
With Porsches they say "buy the newest you can afford". In your situation I would say buy the newest safety technology you and he can afford.

As such, FRS for the win. Not too much power. Safe. Good feedback. Warranty. good price.
I can't think of another car that checks all these boxes to the same degree.

is he old enough to get a part time job to help pay for the cost?

and terrific customizing available at low cost (relative to Porsche/BMW/etc.)
Could be a good project car for the both of you.

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Old 02-26-2014, 01:10 PM   #10
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I wonder what the safety is like on the RX8, and if all engines had that trouble around/every 80K miles? I don't have the details, just that a lot of those cars suffered engine failure and Mazda extended the warranty to cover them.
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Old 02-26-2014, 01:11 PM   #11
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Mk1 or mk2 MR2.
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Old 02-26-2014, 01:14 PM   #12
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I love the MR2, all generations. But roadsters any smaller than a Boxster are a no go for me as far as daily drivers. Ditto for the Mini Cooper. Great Sunday car for the autocross/DE.

There are Far too many SUVs on the road driven by distracted morons. If a Camry did this to your little car I'd hate to see it what could have happened by a speeding Expedition.

p.s.
A mid 2000's Mustang might be good, obviously with some suspension tweaks.
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Old 02-26-2014, 01:18 PM   #13
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i would seriously consider a boxster, youd have the know how and i dont expect our cars to depreciate much more, id say they are about bottomed out, so you can get the value back out of it..... but if he wants to keep it asian ( idk how much they go for ) but he may enjoy a impreza or lancer. Doesnt have to be a WRX or a Evo to still be fun, also alot of guys at my school have older bmws and love them.... Glad that he is okay, being a young guy with a sports car myself i frequently worry that someday someone will be in a large suv or truck cause an accident with me.

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Old 02-26-2014, 01:23 PM   #14
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AE86 F20c swap


Check it here:
http://986forum.com/forums/general-discussions/49528-crono-2-tofu-car-2.html
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Old 02-26-2014, 02:46 PM   #15
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Your car was the one I was thinking of when I said AE86 Plus I used to have one back in the day (I think... I know it was a sporty Corolla hatchback, 5 speed, red with the black louvers on the hatchback.) Sadly I don't know if it was RWD or not; I didn't know such things back in the day. I just remember it was a mid to early 80's model.
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Old 02-26-2014, 02:48 PM   #16
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Thanks for the well wishes everybody. I will pass them along to my son when he wakes up; he is snoozing right now, I don't think he got much sleep last night and he is on some heavy pain meds and muscle relaxers right now...
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Old 02-26-2014, 04:07 PM   #17
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As a former Miata owner, I was always concerned about that type of situation. The laws of physics just don't work in your favor. I'm glad your son is OK.

As far as a replacement is concerned, if you have $3000-$4000 an Infiniti G20 with a five speed manual can be an engaging car. The later "P11" models have side impact airbags. I think the earlier "P10" models are more fun to drive and handle better. I have a 96 which was the last year of P10 production and it has been a great car. For more information, check this forum: Activity Stream - G20.net - Forums

If you have about $9000, I suggest a 2006 - 2011 Honda Civic. Again, buy one with a manual transmission. They are not super fast, but they are surprisingly fun to drive. (The shifter blows the one in my Boxster away.) I bought a 2006 with a manual for my daughter and in addition to being fun to drive they have impressive safety ratings.

Good luck.
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Old 02-26-2014, 04:08 PM   #18
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Thanks for the well wishes everybody. I will pass them along to my son when he wakes up; he is snoozing right now, I don't think he got much sleep last night and he is on some heavy pain meds and muscle relaxers right now...
Quite the hit. I am in the Body Shop industry and see things like this everyday. If you have invoices or receipts of all the work that his been done in the last year, the insurance company should compensate (not 100% but a good amount). When its someone else's insurance paying their insurance company usually takes pretty good care of the claimant simply because its a rough situation. Which insurance is it going thru?
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Old 02-26-2014, 04:16 PM   #19
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wow, so glad your sons is OK. Had the same type of accident 5 years ago on a motorbike and nearly lost my leg. That's why I switched to sportscars!

Good luck with the search.
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Old 02-26-2014, 04:24 PM   #20
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Perhaps your son has back and neck injuries and is suffering, a good lawyer should get him into 911 territory, perhaps even new.

Just saying that insurance would likely want to settle out of court for at least a used Boxster.
I doubt they'd even blink at a $20K settlement.

First thing I thought when I saw his mangled car is ...Don't sign anything having to do with the accident, not even from the police and get a lawyer to help you settle with insurance.

I not saying to try and cheat the system, but my god it looks like he's lucky to even be alive and we need Sh* drivers like that off the road for everyones sake.

Very glad to hear he's not feeling damaged at the moment and wasn't mortally wounded.

This also bring up a related point that Occupants in Boxster accidents fair much better than most other cars and in a high percentage of accidents walk away unharmed. Good reason for him to consider a Boxster I'd say.

As someone that has dealt with lawyers in relation to a similar accident, where I was knocked unconscious (not in my 986) and got to ride in an ambulance, what you describe is not the case. Insurance companies do not write checks easily, and will take as long as possible while being as unpleasant as possible before they settle.

The only ones that win are the lawyers. Even if he could settle for $20k, the lawyer with take 1/3, the health insurance costs will then be deducted (even after being negotiated down significantly), and you would be lucky to walk away with $5k after everything is said an done (maybe after 2 years, it took me 3 years). It all depends, but it would hardly put you in 911 territory.

I am very glad your son is okay, and I would have him checked out by a good doctor just to be safe. It is worth getting the documentation, as some injuries, like headaches related to whiplash, may not show up for several months.

I'll throw out a used Subaru like the WRX as a suggestion, they are a little more substantial than a Miata, are relatively inexpensive to buy and maintain, and have a decent amount of HP.

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