paul_s0 Reader
12/4/19 4:11 p.m.

So, in my ongoing quest to decide what to do for my daily, I've discounted the '08 Civic Si coupe I saw, it's had a side impact, the door isn't properly aligned, I'm not convinced the side airbags are still there that side, and even the owner says 'it's due for some maintenance'.  Yours for $10k .  The '07 Si sedan is $11.5k, has some dubious modifications and the guy is incapable or unwilling to give me any info on it's maintenance.   The Legacy 3.0R I saw was a bag of poo.  Right now my realistic choices are sticking with the existing '08 Mazda 3 2.0 5MT, and accepting I'll have to put some money into it, and not knowing the real kms on it (I'm sure 10s of thousands of kms have fallen out of the odo), or invest a bit more for a '13 Mazda 3 2.0 6MT with all the options and only 30k kms (genuine as far as I can tell, and the main dealer stamps for maintenance back it up) that I saw last week.

Market value of my car is around $7k, and I'd have to accept the probability to need around $1k in parts over the next couple of years (radiator, clutch, ac compressor clutch, possible fuel pump, outside of normal bits - it costs a lot more to get decent parts down here).

The 2013 Mazda 3 I can probably get for $9.5k.   It needs 4 new tyres (OE tyres only half worn but the UV has gotten to them), and a set of pads, and I may need to do something with springs to get some more ground clearance.  Other than that it *shouldn't* need anything for a few years, which will help as time is at a premium, and unplanned repairs cause problems.  Projecting over 3 years, overall costs come out very similar including likely sales value, assuming nothing untoward happens to detract from the value of the '13 (eg uninsured idiots crashing into it, as just happened to the LR3, or neighbours using the roof as a table and leaving deep scratches, as just happened to the '08 3.).

The '13 is by general consensus more refined, and certainly has more creature comforts (cruise - useful for my 10 hour trip up North, bluetooth, sunroof - sorry on a daily I do like a sunroof, side/curtain airbags).  The '08 is a bit more raw/engaging.  Between these exact 2 variants the '13 is 100lbs heavier, but then the drivetrain has at least 100k kms less on it.  I couldn't play around much on the test drive of the '13 but they felt very similar, just with a *much* lighter clutch on the '13.

WWGRM do? Same as my thread asking about Civics, this is for DDing, the school run, and my 'commute' which is a mix of stop/start town driving, some highway, lots of potholes, and a few miles of unsurfaced gravel/mud tracks, plus the occasional 9-10hr trip up North (4-5 hours highway, 4-5 hours twisty mountain roads).  Better the devil I know (which is/will be a bit more fun)?  Or cut my losses now and if I need to spend money/time, do it with a much better example?

Shadeux GRM+ Memberand Reader
12/4/19 5:03 p.m.

My opinion - free: I've always wanted one of these: 

Edit: I made the assumption that you would wrench on it. If not, then never mind!

paul_s0 Reader
12/4/19 7:54 p.m.

Yep, all my own wrenching.  Sadly the MS3 wasn't sold here in Perusad  Otherwise it's be on the list, especially for the forced induction benefits for climbing up over the Andes.

clutchsmoke UltraDork
12/5/19 5:48 p.m.

Any possibility of importing a nicer example of an 8th gen Civic Si? Expanded search possible?

Even with poor or deferred maintenance I think the Si sedan would be worth a thorough looking over. 

CyberEric HalfDork
12/5/19 7:46 p.m.

Tough call. The newer 3 might be worth it for the reduced maintenance for a relatively small fee. I’ve seen your commute, it’s rough on cars.

Are you wanting less hassle, or to spend less money? The 2kish price difference might be worth the reduced hassle.

lnlds Reader
12/6/19 12:26 a.m.

What about a manual 12+ Ford focus 2.0 in manual? Should be cheaper to acquire and in the same category. On the plus side it dynos higher than Mazdas 2.0 even though it's similarly rated

paul_s0 Reader
12/6/19 8:08 a.m.

Cheers gents - importing is out.   Only allowed to import up to 5 years old, and the import duties can come to around 70% of the perceived market value in Peru, it's a non-starter.

Eric, my commute is worse currently!  The normal route in is closed, so I'm doing a few miles of rocky, dusty, potholed tracks at the moment.  I keep swapping between wanting to save time/hassle, and money! I'm being exceedingly indecisive.  Last night I'd decided to just stick with what I've got, then coming in this morning I saw LTFT has jumped upto 15%, which I need to look at.  Then the AC clutch is worsening, I've a feeling the upstream O2 is at best lazy, rear trailing arm bush will need doing soon, plus the other bits I listed above.  One of the problems I've got is I don't trust this 3 like I did the 3 I had previously, some days I think it was a Friday afternoon car.

That $2k difference could easily be less with the way things are going.

Sadly there are very few Focii available down here, I've probably seen 3 for sale in 6 years, all of which were 1st gen models, imported from the US I imagine.  Ford currently only offer SUVs and the Mustang here, although they did sell base spec Fiestas for the last couple of years.

I need to make a decision....

paul_s0 Reader
12/6/19 8:10 a.m.

WRT the si sedan, I'm finding it difficult to tally up $11.5 on an '07 in dubious condition with high miles, vs $10k for an '13 Mazda 3 in practically as-new condition. I know, LSD, Vtec, etc but getting SWMBOs approval won't involve those topics, only safety, cost, space, comfort (ever seen an angry Latina?) cheeky

Floating Doc
Floating Doc GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
12/6/19 8:15 a.m.

Buy the 13. With the driving conditions you're dealing with, your current car is going to be used up no matter how much work you put into it.

clutchsmoke UltraDork
12/6/19 10:30 a.m.
Floating Doc said:

Buy the 13. With the driving conditions you're dealing with, your current car is going to be used up no matter how much work you put into it.

In light of more info, yeah I'd go with newer Mazda 3.

CyberEric HalfDork
12/6/19 7:45 p.m.

In reply to clutchsmoke :


It seems like the reduced hassle will be worth the higher cost, especially given the cost of repairs on the older 3 keeps going up.

jwagner GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/6/19 10:51 p.m.

I've had both generations of the 3 and have an '08 now.  They're very different cars, especially on the highway.  If you're going to do long distance highway driving, the newer gen car is much better - not as buzzy and fatiguing at highway speeds and more composed and quieter, but still interesting to drive. 

paul_s0 Reader
12/7/19 6:33 a.m.
jwagner said:

I've had both generations of the 3 and have an '08 now.  They're very different cars, especially on the highway.  If you're going to do long distance highway driving, the newer gen car is much better - not as buzzy and fatiguing at highway speeds and more composed and quieter, but still interesting to drive. 

Ok thanks, 90% of my driving is short trips, but several times a year (and that might increase next year) I need to do a 9-10 hour trip, half highway, half twisties with a climb from sea level to over 10,000ft asl.

Can I ask, if you've had both, what is the reason you're with an  '08 now? Was the 2nd gen too isolated?  Cheers

CyberEric HalfDork
12/7/19 2:35 p.m.

Does it have the Skyactiv motor? If so, your fuel consumption will improve significantly. 

I haven't driven the second gen 3, only the first and third gen, so I can't offer any comparisons.

paul_s0 Reader
12/7/19 6:13 p.m.

Nope, just the venerable MZR same as the first gen but with the 6 spd box

paul_s0 Reader
12/30/19 9:45 a.m.


So.... The 2013 Mazda 3 actually sold whilst I was dithering, ho hum.  I shouldn't be so indecisive

With these options what would the hive do? All with manual box. I've done a 3 year projection of costs (in Soles, about S/3.3 to $1) as best I can, and have come up with the following, and below a summary of the specific cars.  The current Mazda 3 is cheapest/around the cheapest, but...


Organised for cost over 1 year, not including sales value of vehicle.

S/. for 1 yr


 S/.         9,377.96

2008 Mazda 3 (Current car)

 S/.       11,601.48

1997 BMW 520i

 S/.       12,124.77

2013 Mazda 2

 S/.       13,287.74

2000 Pathy 3.5 5MT

 S/.       16,796.23

2008 Civic Si

 S/.       18,171.47

2016 Mazda 2


Organised for cost over 3 years, including likely sales value of vehicle.

S/. after 3 yrs


 S/.          6,072.78

2013 Mazda 2

 S/.          6,310.16

2008 Mazda 3 (Actual)

 S/.          6,700.68

2016 Mazda 2

 S/.          7,263.44

2008 Civic Si

 S/.          9,643.43

1997 BMW 520i

 S/.        10,301.09

2000 Pathy 3.5 5MT


2012-2014 Mazda 2  Various ones between 25 k kms and 70k kms.  Cost for 3 years S/6,000.  Cost for 1 year without sale value S/12,100


$7000-$8000, this particular one is $7300 2014 model with 40,000kms.  Small, so can’t be used as a backup if problems with Landy, but much cheaper running costs and TIME.  Enjoyed the one we had previously, the 1yr/3yr cost includes for a tune.


2008 Mazda 3 Probably 140k kms. Cost for 3 years S/6,300.  Cost for 1 yr without sale value S/9,400

Safe ish, more or less reliable, fun ish.



$0 Current Mazda:  Adequate at everything, a good compromise.   Cheapest option.   Joint least safe with the Pathfinder depending on type of accident.  Have a feeling it’s a Friday afternoon car, it’s just not as well put together as it’s predecessor.


2015-2016 Mazda 2.  40k kms.  Cost for 3 years S/6,700.  Cost for 1 year without sale value S/18,200


$10,000.  Also a sedan for $10,500.  Small, but bigger than previous gen, so can’t be used as a backup if problems with Landy, but much cheaper running costs and TIME.  Enjoyed the one we had previously.  Safety good for a small car, sedan version not that much smaller than current Mazda 3.


2008 Honda Civic Si, one with 95k kms one with 55k kms. Cost for 3 years S/7,300.  Cost for 1yr without sale value S/16,800 (includes new tyres, dunno if needed).  Actually two for sale at the moment:


Yes the stickers are horrible, but it appears more loved than the one above:

$9500 Honda Civic:  It’s a Honda.  Ever so slightly smaller back seat than the Mazda, slightly bigger boot.  Reliable, good safety, side airbags etc.  Fun.  Only 2 doors, would prefer 4 door but none available. (Was one but wanted $11.5k).  No idea about tyres.


1997 BMW 520i 200k kms Cost for 3 years S/9,600.  Cost for 1yr without sale value S/11,600.

I like it.  Big, comfy, fun, Safe enough, cheap to buy but likely to need parts (included in 3 year cost).


$6400 BMW 520i:  Big and comfy, safe due to being built like a tank, no side airbags etc though.  Fun because RWD.  I miss RWD.  Old, so will need some preventative maintenance, cheapest to buy, most expensive to maintain.  200k kms but they can go v high.  Worse on fuel than Mazda, will need TIME. Has new tyres.


CyberEric HalfDork
12/31/19 11:41 a.m.

I lean toward keeping what you have or the ‘13 Mazda 2. I love those cars, better efficiency than the 3 and newer so less maintenance.

Definitely not the BMW.

spacecadet GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
12/31/19 5:15 p.m.

The Hondas are great, I love mine.

But the 2, while small, is really more practical thanks to the rear doors. if you enjoy the 2. I'd buy the 2013. the price of entry is just too high to justify the 8th gen civics.

I've not driven the newer mazda2 but I liked the mazdaconnect infotainment system on my 2016 mazda6.

I'd absolutely never think of considering the BMW, that makes the civics look like much more sane choices.


paul_s0 Reader
1/13/20 8:08 a.m.

Well, you talked me out of the BMW.

However, SWMBO and I had a chat and she's right, something as small as the 2 just wouldn't be a good idea, mostly due to the need to have something that can stand in for the Landy for family trips.

I had decided it was best to stick with what I had, and just accept that whilst it's the cheaper option now, it's going to be throwing a bunch of money at something which really won't be worth much when we sell it...Projecting out 3 years it's actually one the most expensive options when you take sales value into account.  I haven't seen any Gen 2 Mazda 3s around with the right combination of specs (2.0 5MT) and price.  Then, last night, something popped up for a sale - a low mileage Si sedan.  It's a red Si sedan with only 27k miles on it.  Comes with Hondata, it sadly has aftermarket wheels and it looks like some sort of track day type tyre plus go-faster stickers, so it may be that it's low mileage but they've mostly been track miles.  The catch is the price, he's asking $11.5k.  I'm tempted to have a look and if it really is as good as it looks and the mileage is genuine (and not all track mileage), maybe it'd be worth digging a bit deeper into my pockets.  Most folk here are willing to shift about $500 on price, but not much more.  The other 2 sedans I've seen have had the same asking price, but with 2 or 3 times the mileage. 

For reference, for a grand less there's also a 2011 BMW 130i (will fall foul of the size requirement for family trips) and a 2009 328xi, but newer BMWs scare me (financially!).

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