Friday, May 20

At $13,500, Would This ’99 Mazda MX5 Make A Great Anniversary Present?

Nice Price or No Dice 1999 Mazda Miata MX5 10th Anniversary Edition

While the answer may always be Miata, today’s Nice Price or No Dice ’99 MX5 proves that that answer could sometimes be multiple choice. Let’s see if this special edition car’s price tag ticks all the right boxes.

As we discussed yesterday, BMW has long used the 7 Series as its primary canvas for testing the latest and greatest safety and convenience technologies. The newest edition continues that trend, offering both internal combustion engine and electric versions, and an optional back seat screen that’s wider than many home TVs. Of course, somebody’s going to have to fix all that stuff should it break, and when the warranty also wears out its welcome, that can be a scary proposition. That’s why older cars like the 1995 750iL we considered yesterday might be a solid alternative, offering much of the elegant experience without quite as much tech-terror. At $14,750, buying yesterday’s big Bimmer would be a lot less painful than a new one too, a fact not lost on the 65 percent of you who awarded the car a Nice Price win.

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Speaking of wins, isn’t it quite the accomplishment to achieve 10 years of almost anything? I mean, not like 10 years behind bars or other negative activities, but positive things like a happy marriage or doing a job you love.

In the case of Mazda’s beloved MX5 Miata, the 10th Anniversary of the model’s introduction was acknowledged by the offering of a special equipment and color scheme package, named appropriately enough, the “10th Anniversary Edition.”

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Production was limited to 7,500 cars with each car identified by a fender badge indicating its position in that run. Per its badge, this 1999 Mazda Miata is number 1,026 out of those 7,500. Like all the others, it sports Sapphire Blue Mica paint and chrome-plated alloy wheels. For the Anniversary Edition, Mazda also gussied up the interior, giving the special edition blue suede inserts in the seats and faux carbon-fiber trim on the center console, as well as an up-rated Bose stereo.

It’s not just a looker either. Mazda gave the 10th Anniversary cars a tauter suspension with Bilstein dampers and a stabilizer between the strut towers in the engine bay. The motor is the standard 140 horsepower 1.8 liter four, but that does its thing through a six-speed manual which works in tandem with a Torsen limited-slip rear end that has a taller final drive than the standard car for more relaxed cruising at highway speeds.

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That, of course, all came together for the car’s 10th Anniversary in 1999. And that was fully 23 years ago. My, how time flies.

You wouldn’t know that this Mazda is that old from looking at the pics in the ad, though. With just 49,000 miles on the clock, it doesn’t appear to have had much of an opportunity to go out and get in any trouble. The bodywork looks to be in excellent shape with no apparent issue in either paint or the trim. The color-matched top is just as nice and is apparently brand new. The wheels keep this theme going as they appear to be free from any curb rash. The interior presents in a similar fashion, with just minor wear evident on the upholstery and the leather of the factory Nardi wheel.

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According to the ad, this clean-title car has never seen a winter nor a smoking pet but has seen the recent replacement of its brake pads and rotors as well as its tires. Along with the car, the seller is throwing in a small die-cast doppelgänger in a plastic display case. When new, these cars were sold with his and her’s Seiko watches, but those seemingly have been lost to the ages.

Back then, these cars cost around $28,000. This one — which seems to be a time capsule from when it was new — asks $13,500, or just a tad less than half. That’s not bad for almost a quarter-century of age since something like a modern Maserati sedan or BMW i3 will typically achieve that in less than five years.

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But is it a deal? What do you say, does $13,500 have you saying happy anniversary to this ready-to-party Miata? Or, is that a price nothing to celebrate?

You decide!

Columbus, Ohio, Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

H/T to Greg Gathy for the hookup!

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