Jerry Dork
10/16/13 6:55 a.m.

Killing time last night, I saw this MR2 on craigslist. Here

"86 MR2 - Completely Upgraded - $5400 (Milford)

Adult owned and cared for. Engine and transmission upgraded to a 20 valve blacktop with 6 Speed. Pretty much everything upgraded back to front. Body was shipped from California and is rust free and undercoated. Over 9000 in the car."

Could THIS be my "new" car I've been wanting? Have the $$ so no car payment again, I just wonder how reliable it is.

Adrian_Thompson UberDork
10/16/13 7:19 a.m.

That is really sweet. Change the crappy steering wheel, dye the center of the seats ANYTHING except red and that would be an awesome car. Not sure I'd want to DD something that small these days, but if it suits your needs I'd be all over it. That is seriously cool

4cylndrfury MegaDork
10/16/13 7:37 a.m.

I would rock it so hard, it would leave gravel behind. Seriously,I have lusted over one of those for a loooong time. You wont be able to take a group of buddies to the game in it, but you can take one there real quick. Enjoy stupid good MPG as well. 4AG gets decent aftermarket support, and is quite stout so it will endure a bit of punishment. Theyre not huge power makers, but can be warmed up a bit without killing your wallet. Thats a good looking specimen. If I were in a position to make an offer (like, where a roadster were an option, and I had the disposable cash on hand), Id punch a nun to get to the front of the offer line.

Jerry Dork
10/16/13 8:12 a.m.

I was telling SWMBO last night this car looks new, it's what I REALLY want (vs any new car available today). If I can daily this without maintenance problems it is definitely what suits my needs.

She has the Element for carrying stuff/people/dogs, I'm fairly average in height/weight, I love my '87 and have loved these things since I first saw one around 1993 and got a chance to drive it. If I could buy a new MK1 for new car prices I would.

I need to text this guy today.

JohnRW1621 UltimaDork
10/16/13 8:20 a.m.

Why dislike black, red seats on a car that has red, black exterior?
The factory steering wheel would have been the huge 15.5" wheel. In '87 the wheel went to 14.5". On my '88 I went with a 13.5" aftermarket to gain some leg room. On a '86, the brake handle is on the driver's side too which steals leg room. In '87, it was moved to the other side.
Much like.

Jerry Dork
10/16/13 8:28 a.m.
JohnRW1621 wrote: On a '86, the brake handle is on the driver's side too which steals leg room. In '87, it was moved to the other side.

And I hate that my 87 is on the passenger side! If I wanted leg room I would have bought a bigger car!

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess MegaDork
10/16/13 8:39 a.m.

They are about as reliable as gravity if you keep oil and water in them.

kanaric Reader
10/16/13 9:06 a.m.

i'm almost thinking you can get a just as good car for cheaper or a mint SC for that price. Even 20v swapped I never see them go for $5k, talk him down you might get something great for cheap

scardeal Dork
10/16/13 9:08 a.m.

It looks really clean. Mods are tasteful.

cghstang HalfDork
10/16/13 9:12 a.m.

It's been listed for a while, saw it a few weeks ago. I heartily approve.

Jerry Dork
10/16/13 9:45 a.m.

Texted him for engine photos (kinda surprised there were none). Said I could call after 2pm, plan to. Probably go check it out this week. ...I might be buying another MR2.

Matt B
Matt B SuperDork
10/16/13 9:49 a.m.


For the amount I've invested in my AW11, I'd be waaaaay ahead if I just bought something like that.

eastsidemav Dork
10/16/13 11:45 a.m.

In reply to Jerry:

Thats in my neck of the woods, if you go take a look at it feel free to call me. If I'm not already doing something else, I could be a second set of eyes.

Jerry Dork
10/16/13 11:52 a.m.

In reply to eastsidemav:

Awesome, thanks. Going to call tonight for more info & if it still sounds as good I'll probably go after work Thur or Fri, otherwise maybe a trip on Sunday.

wae Reader
10/16/13 12:55 p.m.

Definitely rock that thing! I don't really watch those, but the price doesn't seem out of line if the condition is as good as those pictures indicate.

For some reason, I actually like the two-tone seats, too.

carbon Reader
10/16/13 12:57 p.m.

20v, 6 speed, sweet! That's a good package for that money, if it's straight.

JohnRW1621 UltimaDork
10/16/13 1:12 p.m.

I owned an '88 MR2 SC from '00-'04. Even then, some parts were hard to come by. On this one I notice:
Undamaged front lip, aka: curb catcher. If is near impossible to find a replacement front lower valance that is not ruined.
Had the ashtray. These seem to be very popular for disappearing leaving a gap in the console.
Has the radio surround. One of these gets destroyed every time a stereo is stolen. In addition, the design is such that your knee resting against it sort of pulls the unit "out of square" which results in the upper mounting holes being pulled out. Often need washers to keep it in place. If all that does not due it in, the remaining units tend to crack the vinyl in the hot sun.

This one has a SC engine cover. With only about 1,000 SC sold in the US per year for each of the two years offered ('88 & '89) they were rare to begin with. Add to that the fact that everyone who wanted to add a JDM SC engine to their USDM car needed this engine cover to complete the job. Also rare due to "conversions" are the needed SC axle half shafts which are stronger than the non-SC version.
I am not sure if the 20V conversion needs the thicker axles but I recommend inspecting them because finding replacements was hard in '04. I bet it is damn near impossible now (10 years later.)

JohnyHachi6 Dork
10/16/13 1:25 p.m.

My brother had a blacktop 20v 1st gen with a nice suspension (maybe Tokico Illuminas and Eibach springs? plus chassis braces, sway bars and such). It was a great car. Really handled like a kart and was seriously fast. Not terribly practical, but lots of fun.

Jerry Dork
10/16/13 1:29 p.m.

In reply to JohnRW1621:

I think the interior is what drew me in. Having an '87 in less-than-stellar shape I noticed these details. And in my mind the owner is a middle-aged guy that has restored this the right way, less duct tape and zip ties than the typical flat brimmed hat guys.

I posted this in the chance that wiser people than myself would be like "no way, too much, don't do it." Instead, a bunch of enablers, the lot of you!

JFX001 UltraDork
10/16/13 1:38 p.m.

Makes me want to keep mine now.

JohnRW1621 UltimaDork
10/16/13 1:46 p.m.

I also noticed that he has the one year only ('89) LED spoiler.
I have one of those in my inlaw's garage if someone needs one.
I also have an '87+ ashtray and good '87+ radio surround as well as some other lingering MR2 parts.

The rims are from a MR-S. The first years of those rims were different widths of 15" rims. In '02 or '03 the rims look the same but they are 15" fronts and 16" rears. To me, these look like 15/16 combo. They are rarer but not sure if they really represent an advantage. My biggest concern would be what is tire availability.

Also, not '86 tail light. Instead it has the more visually appealing '87+ lights. To complete this swap, you need the '87 trunk lock as well which looks to have been done.
Not an '86 side vent. Also the more appealing '87+ version.

Can not tell from the pictures but in '86 there were no speakers in the rear c-pillars. You have to get the c-pillar trim from an '87+ to get the grills.

I just noticed the white gauge faces. My only dislike.

Jerry Dork
10/16/13 7:18 p.m.

In reply to JohnRW1621:

Just called, left a msg hoping he calls back quickly. But wouldn't MR-S wheels be 5-lug?

Also, he emailed two engine photos, here's one:

EvanB GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
10/16/13 7:32 p.m.

Make sure you rev it to 11000.

JohnRW1621 UltimaDork
10/16/13 7:33 p.m.

No 4x100 with exact center bore as the Mk1.
Mk2 = 5 lug
Mk3 = 4x100

Jerry Dork
10/16/13 9:22 p.m.

Just got off the phone, checking it out tomorrow. He mentioned the person he bought it from might be interested in buying it back, not sure that was a tactic to speed me along or legit. Seemed like a nice guy, 50yr old not a bro-seph. See what happens.....

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