Which car shall I purchase? Last toy car, I promise to grow up and stop purchasing goofy cars

OK, this is will be car will be purchased in 18 months to two years from now. I currently have a mustang convertible (love her, but I need to downsize for retirement). What I want in order
Convertible (I love the rag top) this is just about number one on my list, just came home with the roof down and it was lovely today 86 and sunny.
Manual (Lulu is lovely, but i miss shifting)
Better gas mileage (just about any one can beat Lulu their)
FUN to drive, getting a Fusion Hybrid this Feb/March so I will have a nice sedan, plates are expiring on old car repair vs value = new car.
Small, sporty
What I have been thinking of
Mini Roadster
Mazda Miata
I am open to other suggestions, budget around 30K
This car is for me, as in I am the only driver, kids long gone from the nest, I only need it to run errands and for a short while to and from work, so no big long drives. I live in the midwest so I do like a car that is OK in the snow, so far my solution with Lulu has been when it snows, I just don’t leave home (my work has adjusted to my rather spotty attendance in inclement weather and has decided that they can live with it).

I’d take a new Miata any day of the week.

Miata. Far more reliable and far more fun than a Mini.


The Mini is fun but not so reliable, The Mazda Miata any day of the week. The new generation should be widely available by then which looks amazing.

C6 Corvette. The 2010 will be about $30,000 and it is rated at 26 MPG on the highway. If this is a fun car, gas mileage is not as important. If you drive it 5000 miles per year, the Corvette will only cost $100 more than the MX-5 for gas each year. It really depends on what experience you want beyond top down fun. The gas mileage is probably about like the Mustang, but it’s a real, high end sports car for a great price.

The Mini is overpriced, not that reliable, and not as fun to drive as the Miata. The Miata is an impeccable choice with no real weaknesses. You can even get a folding hardtop that offers better security than the soft top and has just as much trunk room. By the time you buy there may be a new Miata out. Alfa Romeo is going to be selling a new roadster built on the Miata platform, though with unique styling and Alfa engines. I suspect it will be overpriced relative to the Miata, and probably won’t be out yet when you’re buying.

Um, Jt, the OP trying to cut the expenses for retirement. A C6 would definitely not be a good choice. Call your insurance company for verification of this point. And also price out the difference in cost for a tuneup on a C6 and a tuneup on a Miata. For the OP’s purposes, this would be a bad, bad choice.

Oh, I thought he said he wanted to have fun. My mistake.

I think it’s a woman. A man doesn’t name his car “Lulu”. Well, at least not any of the men in my circle of friends… :slight_smile:

I gave my daughter the nickname Lulu. And what man names his car Eleanor? But a man did.

Some guys would name their 3/4 ton diesel "LuLu " in a heart beat…and their pet chewy “Thor”. Go figure.

Yes I am a woman, and thanks for all the feedback. I will go and test drive the Miata, I like that retractable hard top and see what I think. Once I know its the right toy for me I can begin the pricing and saving for the new “toy”. Again I promise after this car I will be good and get a nice useful sedan (not). FYI am I nuts in thinking I can get for trade in 8 to 10k for Lulu, she has every option Ford offered, will have less than 80,000, miles and in perfect condition not even a chip in he paint (garaged). 2011 Red Paint, grey leather inside, all options, V6 automatic.

Buy the Miata and forget the Mini. My sister has owned her shiny red Miata since 1993 and it’s still going strong.

keep the mustang. how long has it been since you shifted gears? make sure your knees still agree with getting a manual again.

If you can only afford one toy car, make it a Miata. At least it will start in any weather, and be reliable fun in the process. A friend of mine did just that, but unfortunately he has a spinal problem, making getting in and out of the Miata very painful. So, he bought the hottest Mazda3 Speed model he could find and enjoys his “Zoom Zoom” driving just as much as the Miata.

Of the 2 options given, the Miata with the Mini a far distant second. I’d suggest looking for a used Honda S2000. If you find a nice one, it is a great car.

When Tom McCahill had his column in Mechanix Illustrated, a single guy asked his advice on whether he should buy a sports car. Tom’s typical answer was: “by all means get a sports car; you’ll be dead and married for a long time”.

Most of my wife’s colleagues had small sports cars (British) as their first vehicles; after the repairs bills came in and or they got engaged it was the end of sports car ownership.

The Honda S2000 is a great car… with absolutely totally zero cargo capacity. You’d need to tow a trailer to use it for a weekend away.

I liked the S2000 a lot, but it hasn’t been made in some years so any you might find likely have quite a few miles on them. And probably not gentle, old lady miles. It does have a trunk that’s big enough for modest luggage, but it doesn’t have storage in the cabin. I’ve seen companies make that mistake repeatedly on sports cars (Solstice and Sky, MR2, new Alfa 4C). How hard is it to include a glove compartment, door pockets, or center console cubbies? Some convertibles have a compartment between the seat backs that’s hard to reach, but better than nothing. Every other car has them. Silly mistake. I would never buy a car without cabin storage of some sort. The Miata doesn’t have much, but at least it has a little.