MK1 as a daily driver? - MR2 Owners Club Message Board
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 20:27 Thread Starter
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MK1 as a daily driver?

Hi,

I'm thinking about possibly getting a MK1 MR2 as a daily driver and have a few questions. First of all, I'm only 16 and have been driving around a beat up Prizm for a while now. How will my insurance company see the car? Do you think that it will be any higher than any other coupe? My main concern is that they may see it as a convertible, jacking up the price.

Secondly, I've read that certain MR2's spin out very easily because of their design. I know this affects the MKII the most but do the MKI's spin out a lot as well? Also, how reliable and safe are they for a daily driver?

Finally, eventually I would like to get it fairly quick and have it handle nicely. I was thinking somewhere in the ballpark of 14's in the 1/4. Would this be possible? I know that MR2's aren't exactly known as drag cars which is why I ask. What would I need? How much do you think it would cost me?

Thank you!
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 20:45
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first off insurance shouldn't be too bad... i pay just over 1K a year for everything but collsion ins. and i have a ticket on my record... Second i dont know why they'd see it as a vert, unless of course you know where to buy one of the, what was it, 15 (someone correct me but i think thats right) MK1 verts.

If you are refering to the t-top/sunroof models, well i know my in.s company (state farm) does not see it as a vert.

Hope this helps a little.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 20:48
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With simple bolt on modifications the supercharged mk1 can easily drop into the 14s. Also check out this thread:

https://mr2oc.com/showthread.php?t=231
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 20:54 Thread Starter
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Yeah, I thought they might consider it a convertible because of the t-top.
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 21:07
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the actual book value for a GREAT MK1 is only 1K my advice is to just get minimum covradge, because if you do anything minor the're just total it anyway.

i drove my SC as my daily it worked out great, excpet you have no rom for stuff or people, and if you have an SC model then it's a lot of money for gas,
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 21:10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PV_Golf
Secondly, I've read that certain MR2's spin out very easily because of their design. I know this affects the MKII the most but do the MKI's spin out a lot as well? Also, how reliable and safe are they for a daily driver?
put simply the more rear weight baised a car(mki 45.5/55.5, mkii 42/58) , the more it will oversteer in deceleration(braking or even throttle lift), as well as understeer more while accelerating(this is good as most rwd cars swing their asses out under hard acceleration while cornering, a Mr2 for example will put more power down before loosing traction to the rear wheels)

learn how a midengined car behaves, and it really shouldnt be a proble, actually most of us here will tell you its one thing that makes the mr2 such a blast to drive, just take it easy learning the car
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 21:57
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I also learned to drive on a Geo Prizm, and then bought my first car, an '86 MR2, with my own money I had saved, just a month before my 17th birthday.

MkI's are great first cars, they are economical (easy on the gas), and fun to drive. Just take it easy on the streets, and save the hard driving for the autocross events, or road course events.

You really have to drive the car hard to spin it out. I spun my car out first at an autox and then a few months later on the street, but was lucky enough not to hit the barricade onto the freeway onramp (was at night with no cars around). So don't worry about that too much, do an autox and take it easy on the streets and you will be fine

14's in a MkI MR2 would be way too expensive to do with the original motor. The best way to get your car that fast would be to buy a supercharged one, or do an engine swap.
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 22:09
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PV_Golf
...How will my insurance company see the car? Do you think that it will be any higher than any other coupe? My main concern is that they may see it as a convertible, jacking up the price.
My insurance company, Farmer's, ranks each car with a letter A being the cheapest, Z being the most expensive, and then after Z it goes on from 0 through 9. They rated my 86 mk1 n/a as a T which is the same as my 96 Saturn SC1. They are both low power cars that don't get too many claims. I was looking at a 300ZX and it was ranked as a 8, meaning they get a ton of expensive claims(accidents, theft). I pay $360 for insurance the mk1 a year, would have been $1500 for the 300zx annually. California, age 23, no accidents or tickets...

From an insurance standpoint, mk1s are cheap. My agent said T rated cars are fairly rare. Hope this helps.
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 22:21 Thread Starter
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Thanks a bunch guys. Quick question, I've heard that MKI MR2's are extremely fun to drive. What are your views on the "fun" factor?

Edit: One more thing that I forgot to add, I haul my golf bag around with me a lot and occasionally a dive bag (About the size of a suitcase) would I be able to fit these into a MKI? I know that it doesn't have any backseats but does it have a trunk? I never really thought about it...

Last edited by PV_Golf; January 10th, 2006 at 23:10.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 22:29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PV_Golf
Hi,



Secondly, I've read that certain MR2's spin out very easily because of their design. I know this affects the MKII the most but do the MKI's spin out a lot as well? Also, how reliable and safe are they for a daily driver?

Finally, eventually I would like to get it fairly quick and have it handle nicely. I was thinking somewhere in the ballpark of 14's in the 1/4. Would this be possible? I know that MR2's aren't exactly known as drag cars which is why I ask. What would I need? How much do you think it would cost me?

Thank you!

I would have to say an MK1 is a great car as long as some rules are followed.Before you start adding parts to get more power,learn to handle the car properly.All rear wheel drive cars will kick the back end out if given the chance,a mid engine adds to that and the short wheelbase will make it happen fast when traction is broken.But its not so bad that you cant learn control.
Most spinouts happen on icy or wet roads,but they can happen on dry ones too if your driving hard.Its a good idea to find an empty parking lot in both dry and wet weather,do a few donuts and a few fast corners,push it until it spins,then you know how far you can push your car,and dont go anywhere near that point on the street.When you leave a stop sign or light to make a turn,dont punch it or you will end up looking in the other direction.Slow down before corners,if you wait until your in the corner to brake,your weight will transfer to the front wheels and your rear may slide.Mr2 will be alot of fun if you learn your car,but if you push too soon you may end up hating it or ,having an accident where someone is seriously injured or worse.Let yourself have time to become totally familiar and comfortable with the car,then you can think about adding power. Good luck and enjoy

Last edited by Quag; January 10th, 2006 at 22:32.
post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 23:29
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Let me tell you this.
I bought an '88 T-top N/A MK1 as a daily driver to replace an '88 EF9 hatch...can't even compare.
I own a 420rwhp Mustang, a lifted Tundra, a Benz Eclass...and yet, everytime my wife and I go out for dinner and a movie, I always say, "Let's take the MR2!"

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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 23:33
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just get it, i have a 92 n/a and i bought it when i was 16... makes me the happest kid ever
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 23:34
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If you have Pemco they will either: (a) Refuse to insure you, or (b) Insure you for a few months then cancel you saying they don't insure young drivers in sportscars (Exactly what happened to me... No ticket, wreck, or any reasoning). I pay $140ish a month for darn good coverage (not sure on specifics) with a good student discount and no tickets or wrecks.

Fun factor is awesome, get all the suspension back in good shape, some good tires, then decide what you want from there.
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 23:43
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Mk1's are great Daily Drivers.

I don't know how your parents feel about it but I wouldn't rate the Mk1 as a safe car and I wouldn't recommend the car if you drive fast.

I drive fast and likely to kill myself or seriously maim someone so unless your a responsible driver THINK ABOUT IT
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old January 10th, 2006, 23:51
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They're great fun to drive, yes indeed. No power steering, no slop in the steering system at all, and the chassis is quite responsive and 'communicative'.

It might be a "slow" car by today's standards, but for actual fun factor... fantastic.

I haven't had problems with the MR2 being spin-happy myself, no more than any other car.

If you treat it with respect and drive it smoothly and sensibly, it'll reward you in kind. If you drive in a manner which would disrupt any car - braking suddenly halfway through a corner, for example, steering sharply and jerkily - it will let you know about it. This will sound cliche'd, and I can't have been the first to say it, but it's definitely a car that teaches you how to drive.

Edit: Regarding bootspace/trunkspace, there's actually a fair amount. At least as much as a "normal" hatchback or sedan of similar size. The problem is that it's split in half. The rear trunk/boot is narrow but very wide and deep. It will fit a bag of golf clubs, at a guess. Others may confirm/deny this hopefully. The frunk (front-trunk) is a little deeper but narrower in width.

There's always the passenger footwell too. That's the best luggage compartment ever.

Last edited by Spots; January 11th, 2006 at 00:06. Reason: Das Boot!
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post #16 of 24 (permalink) Old January 11th, 2006, 03:46
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wow mk1's have got to be some of the best daily drivers I know, I've been driving mine for about 2 years now and love every second of it! My eclipse just kinda annoys me now when i try driving it lol
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post #17 of 24 (permalink) Old January 11th, 2006, 07:41
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buy a n/a for cheap insurance then swap the 4agze into it and switch to turbo and u could run 13's!! lol
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post #18 of 24 (permalink) Old January 11th, 2006, 10:21
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A MK1 as a daily driver took some adjustment, but only in the area of cargo hauling capability. On the topic of overall safety, while the MK1 is small and a bit ass heavy, it makes you put your tools and other stuff either in the frunk or trunk. Many times people have been injured or worse from cargo loose in the cab. I actually feel safer in a MK1, because I can out accelerate, out brake and out corner most of the cars out there, I can get the heck out of the way. Sort of a defensive/offensive driving strategy.
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post #19 of 24 (permalink) Old January 11th, 2006, 12:20
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i had an corolla gt-s 85 last summer and sold it for 2k and bought an mr2 n/a automatic for 1700 i changed it to manual for 600$ and im happy since then and im 17 years old by the way im insured one way i dont know if in is its the same thing in the us they pay for the other guys damage if I have an accident anyways its cheap and its my dayly driver it costs me 47 per mon th for insurance and 30$ to full the tank and in imo theres a lot of space i never use the front hood compartiment only the back and the back of my 2 seater

Last edited by downhillspecial; January 11th, 2006 at 12:24.
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post #20 of 24 (permalink) Old January 11th, 2006, 17:28
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Not sure on engine mods but a guy in the uk has ran a 14.2 with 60 shot of nos and that was on a engine with 122k miles on the clock.
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