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Old 01-15-2015, 10:22 AM   #1
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986,350z, mini cooper s, etc.

I am thinking about purchasing a used car to work on. This will be the first car I really work on besides minor things like oil changes and swapping out sway bars and shocks. I currently own a Lexus IS350 with 30k miles (bought new) and a s2000 ap1. I am thinking about purchasing a 986s, but what opinions on it vs a 350z, mini cooper 2, s4, ect in the price range. I do not care about reliability. I love my S2000 but it seems like it doesn't need anything done to it to fix or modify. Would you recommend the 986 for a fun car to work on for a price range of range 10k (not fixed, but I plan to get an expensive fourth car in 6-7 months).

I know working on a mid engine is more difficult, but it is one of the things that really attract me to the car. I see some 986 s for $7k with like 110k miles, but I am worried if I upgrade the LMS bearing, possibly worn clutch, tires are definitely worn, etc it will add a few thousand even if I am doing it myself and I will be looking at over 10k to get it drivable when I am starting to seed 987 for $13k-$14k which unarguably has a nicer interior. $4k means little to me

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Old 01-15-2015, 10:58 AM   #2
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Get the car that you like the best (Boxster is the best looking and handling of the 3 you mentioned !). This is a Boxster forum; we like Boxsters the best! If $4,000 means little to you, then get a 987. Yes, you will have to put $$$ into a 110,000 mile, $7,000 Boxster 986. $13-14,000 for a 987 is a pretty good price! You might still need to put money into it.
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Old 01-15-2015, 11:16 AM   #3
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What Joe B said.

A well used 986/987 is going to need work unless you find a enthusist that has taken care of the car. Expect to pay more up front for a well maintain 986/987 but you should come out ahead in total cost of a cheaper non-enthusist owned 986/987. Good Luck.
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Old 01-15-2015, 11:46 AM   #4
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It will be expensive to go for the porsche, but if you enjoy the driving dynamics of the s2k it'll be similar just feel more grown up. stuff like a mini will give you a very different driving experience to the s2k, however I feel that the boxster is most enjoy of all cars you have listed, just be aware of how much repairs and such can be.
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Old 01-15-2015, 12:24 PM   #5
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Go with the 986 Boxster. It's closer to what a Boxster should be than a 987.

Or build a really bad-ass 350z.

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Old 01-15-2015, 12:27 PM   #6
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In your situation, being that you already have a roadster, I would consider an air-cooled Carrera first. The SC's seem to be viewed as one of the more reliable ones long-term and their values continue to rise (if that matters to you) mainly because Porsche produced very limited numbers of air-cooled cars vs. the water cooled era of Boxsters/Caymans and 1999-2014 911's. The 964's are a bit more money but they are the last of the 911's with the high fenders and round headlights but are still considered modern Porsches with all the safety considerations. Being that you will probably put very few miles on the car it might be nice to sell the car at some point for more than you paid. If you plan to drive the car year round no matter the weather and do some track days and AX, and could care less about hiking up the odometer, then the water-cooled Porsches are probably the better option. If you wreck it or the engine lets go there are plenty of used ones around to replace it. I guess its up to you, do you want a show horse or a work horse.
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Old 01-15-2015, 01:32 PM   #7
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I only drive my S2000 with the hardtop on. If I got the boxster it would remain a soft top. I do not mind having another roadster. I am planning to get a AM vantage or a 997 turbo in 7 months time. So I will have four cars to myself so my yearly mileage won't be so much.

Cost to repair does not bother me, plus I will do everything myself. I want to learn to repair things myself as a hobby. I will be getting a 4 post lift and a kwik lift so working on cars will be safer and easier than using jack stands. I want a car that actually needs work now and then vs my S2000 which has been bulletproof.

The 986s I mention need new tires, the LMS upgrade. It had a new transmission including the clutch put in at 45k miles so there is still some clutch life. It also has documented services.
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Old 01-15-2015, 01:55 PM   #8
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4 post lift very nice. Have you seen this? The garage towards the end of the video is very cool.

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