Graefin10 SuperDork
May 11, 2014 12:56 p.m.

Never drove one, know nothing about them. Says shifter bushings need to be replaced but can be driven. Runs good, no rust, decent interior but needs headliner, needs one tire. It looks straight and has a decent set of 17" alloys on it. 210K miles is the most negative aspect. I haven't seen it yet and don't know whether it's worth it or not. Can buy it for less than 1K.

Any actual knowledge about them would be appreciated.

Swank Force One MegaDork
May 11, 2014 3:28 p.m.

One of the better handling FWD cars, nice and light, surprising aftermarket, easy to turn into a serious rocket, eligible for Mazda Motorsports program.

Make sure the shifter bushing is actually all that's wrong with it. Even with bad bushing, it should still go in every gear smoothly and easily. Make sure there's no play up and down in the shifter. (As in... grab the knob and pull up/push down.) If there's excessive play, the shifter may have "dropped" or is about to. If it has, you can probably lowball the hell out of the seller, but it's an easy fix. It'll cause shifting problems since the linkage will bind on the exhaust.

The motor in it is..... the B8 SOHC i think. 1.8 litres, related to the miata motor, just slower. It'll be a momentum car.

Really the only weak points of these cars is rust and the transmissions, but the stock motor shouldn't make enough power to shred it unless driven by a total moron.

Go get it!

fanfoy HalfDork
May 11, 2014 3:54 p.m.

KLZE swap or turbo that sucker for maximum fun.

Edit: Check this fine build for inspiration.

captdownshift HalfDork
May 12, 2014 6:29 a.m.

most of the BG 323's came with the B6 1.6L, which sans oil pan and manifolds is a miata motor. Shares suspension platform with protege, zx2 and mx3. Pierce motorsports makes some awesome bits for it. Limited slips are out there and the 1.8L BP 16v swap is the easiest swap in the history of man. There are megasquirt plug and play kits for both the B6 and BP as well. I'd ditch the 17's for some 14's or 15's to wake up the acceleration (13's originally came on them). Corksport still has bronzeoil shifter bushings available for them. and if it has white paint that's original, plan on needing to repaint it shortly.

Man i'm all over the map. I love these cars though, solid examples normally go for 6-800 i've picked them up for as little as $100 (runner, dime sized section of rust).

NGTD SuperDork
May 12, 2014 4:14 p.m.

Ask "Jeff" on this board he has a NTH 323 Rally car.

captdownshift HalfDork
May 13, 2014 5:59 a.m.

also the 1.8L 16V BP motor was designed to be boosted, manifolds are cheap and plentiful, they can handle 350hp easily, but the transmissions don't like more then 225-250whp

Wally MegaDork
May 13, 2014 7:07 a.m.

I had swapped from 14s to 15s on my Escort and it was the nicest driving small car I've driven .

Swank Force One MegaDork
May 13, 2014 7:28 a.m.
captdownshift wrote: also the 1.8L 16V BP motor was designed to be boosted, manifolds are cheap and plentiful, they can handle 350hp easily, but the transmissions don't like more then 225-250whp

More like they can handle 250hp easily. 350hp is pretty much guaranteed bent rods.

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