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Mazda sp 23 driver upgrading


hengeli
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Hi fellas, I have just joined this forum and find it a wealth of experience and am addicted!!

 

Anyway, I have started looking for a new ride and have seriously narrowed my search down to 3 cars, the MX5, Clio 200 and the Golf 118 tsi. Here's a bit about myself - I live on the northen beaches in Sydney and its got some good driving roads. I have gone hard core car shopping and here's my write up on my considerations, bearing in mind my next car will be a drivers' car.

 

MX5 - This car was my favourite by far and I was very close to putting a deposit down for a folding hard top but was shopping a few dealers around Sydney. This car really is one of the best road race cars of our generation and deserves all the accolades it gets - even Robbo from Wheels thinks its one of the best drives.

I have loved this car always, its really a car that almost feels one with you when you are driving it. The MX5 has got one of the best steering feels in the business and it sounds fantastic when you're giving it a bit of just cruising around.

I am superbly comfortable with a mazda product and on the inside its VERY simple but everything works and you know you WILL have a reliable machine for a few good years to come. This car had the advantage of a folding roof and let me firstly say most people will think you bought it for the novelty - I don't, I buy cars because they excite me and I know I will enjoy the drive. The roadster has got amazing balance and feels very well balanced through corners, seats are average, driving position is pretty good but it has one of the best gearboxes I have ever tested - this side of $50k anyway.

 

CLIO 200 Trophee - My oh my, I was going to skip even driving this little kart till something in me said what the hell. I walked into Col Crawford in Brookvale and there was this nice gentlemen who introduced himself and we broke the ice, long story short we talked at lengths about cars for the better part of 2 hours and finally on his second attempt asking me out on a drive I said " Yeah, let's do it!" We took a black 200 Trophee out and a silver GTR had to make way because a little beaut Clio was going out for a drive and the GTR was in its way.

 

Firstly, I made it clear if he could drive first, so that I could get a feel what the car was like. He was not too bad, I wasn't scared at all but he had control of the little thing. I told him his gear shifts were pretty quick and snappy, seats were very good and supportive through a few twisties. Next came my turn, and I took the 200 on a few round abouts and small hills to get a feel for the car, just to get comfortable with the thing. Then, we headed to Freshie for a few take offs through the lights, this car loves a bloody rev!! It blows all cars I have driven, including the Megane 225(2005) BMW 1 series(hatch) RX8, Focus XR5, Mondeo XR5 just to name a few. And I just love the response of the little thing, the suspension, steering at speed and through bends, the engine is a cracker, gear shift is fine, no complaints. Fish, if I bought cars after a drive, the 200 Trophee would have been the first! This is how blown away I am by the 200, I have always grown up with uncles who had good steers, ie, Porsch, MG, Renault 5(86), Fiat uno, Alfa 75 twin spark, Volvo V70.

 

Golf 118 TSI - I took a silver manual of course out at Bill Buckles and headed to Curl Curl for a test, its quick this thing but damn you don't feel the thing, somehow its got zero feel and the bends expose this cars handling, bone-stock. MASSIVE understeer and I don't like the gas pedal when its foot to the floor or through the firewall. The chargers go whoosh but its a housewife's car - period! This car is the rational choice, cheap, sleeper look, fast at the lights but corners, forget it. The driving position is high up seats at the back are terrible and it looks like it was designed by Toyota. I will still consider it, for its price but I don't ever want to think for a moment, damn the driving position is horrible. I have driven a GTD today, my estimates are 10 days after taking the 118 tsi out and I wished I could tell you how frustrated I was with the damn thing after a test drive at Classic Chatswood. Interior and controls do not do it for me, driving position too high, feel and steering average, this car(black GTD with leather sun-roof park sensors blue tooth is $51888 da) I told the sales lady if you asked me to buy it for $40000 now, I will not even consider it. The only thing going for the GTD are the looks, absolute sh*t drive and ordinary engine.

 

I will give myself 6 weeks to cool off as I want my next ride to last 3-4 years, I hope I do not decide on the GOLF 118 but its the rational choice in Reflex Silver of course. If i was to go for the Clio 200, I have to really think about colours, do I stick to my head and go for Mercury, or chase something different and factory order an Alien Green and go absolutely berserk, knowing I have gone on all cylinders balls out with a car that I will never lose EVER in a car park. But then the attention may just be too much.

 

Thanks for reading guys, just my little write up and I hope to 'join' the other frenchies in 2 months, let's see what happens... Cheerio

 

Hengeli

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The choices are difficult some times.

Well I think you can rule out the Golf, and well, a two seater can be hard to live with at times, so bring on the 200. Your experience is of the Clio is what brings a smile to Clio owners, the playful nature nature of wanting to rip up any windy bit of road before you.

Good luck with the decision Hengeli, Alien Green would be a good choice.

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My Clio does everything I ask of it.

 

It's fun, quick, reliable and practical.

 

I run an AV hire business on the side, so need to carry bulk stuff every now and again. While it's not a big car, with the seats down it can carry surprising amounts of large gear, and can be driven smoothly enough not to disturb the load during transit.

 

I am also know on the forum for being a bit of a track junkie, and a proponent for motorsport. I regularly run in sprints and hillclimbs and frequently embarras more fancied machinery. Hillclimbs particularly suit the smaller vehicles, and the Clio is only held back by its driver.

 

Mine also does the daily work run without fuss, and doesn't attract attention when I don't want it to.

 

Good luck with your choice, and thanks for the detailed intro and write-up.

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Welcome, and a big thanks for taking the effort+time to give us your thoughts on where your head is at so soon!

 

I think that with all your negative comments about the Golf, I'm surprised you are still contemplating it. I reckon you know deep down that if you sign up for one, you'll regret the decision the moment you put the pen down. So really, you have 2 choices. I'm thinking your heart is saying MX-5, but your butt cheeks are saying Clio!

 

As both blue182 and Griffyn pointed out, you cannot use the MX-5 for anything practical and it is a strict 2 seater. Unsure of how important resale is to you, but I don't think it'll keep much more of its value compared to the Clio come resale time. I'm certain that MX-5 fanboys will defend them, but from what I've seen their prices plummet just as much over the space of a few years. And in any case, they are almost as common as Golfs!

 

Be different - break the stereotype mould :wink:

 

I had a squiz at the Alien Green colour swatch at a dealership the other day. It's definitely... bright! Very similar to the green as used by Porsche for their GT3 RS range, and in my book, that can't be a bad thing. It's growing on me, that's for sure.

 

Best of luck with your decision making.

Cheers, Dish.

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Hi and hopefully a long welcome.

I too thought the same as Dish and Co. ..you seem to know that the Golf really should not be on ht elist for all the points "you" actually stated. Looks are not enough, and IMO i think the other 2 look better anyway.

So how important is the practicality?... massive point for the 200 over the 5.

I love the top down on the 5, so i'm with you there.

How important is "the wet" scenario. Point to 200 on racedays and everyday drives.

Uniqueness... not being biast, 200 with or without the Green stands out even against higher spec cars.

I could go on, but in the end, you seem to have a grasp of it, and it will be "your" car.

So we wish you luck and a good decision.

Don't think you can wrong, but most here would know you can go more right.

Cheers and enjoy.

WOLF

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The golf definitely won't cut it if you don't go for a GTI or the R.

 

MX5 has a more capable chassis being rwd.

 

200 is much more practical and probably more fun to drive. Will be quicker in a straight line compared to the MX5.

 

Good luck :)

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Mate - best first post I've seen in a while.

 

I read all of it (which is surprising for someone of my attention span).

 

I'd go 200, mx-5 and yeah, last option being the golf.

 

You did say you started out wanting this to be a drivers car, that rules out the golf straight away.

 

The MX-5's are great - I would have bought one except I need a 4/5 seater - giving the old folks or friends a lift or if you're the age where little one's are born - you're gonna be stuck with a 2 seater.

 

The only thing I have never liked about the Clio, is it's name - the rest is amazing, and I can guarantee you're gonna be the happiest with it.

 

All the best with your decision though !

 

And finally - Welcome!

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Thanks guys for the warm welcome, I am delighted with all your replies, and I have returned to the dealership to have a look at the thing, third time mind you. I am really super keen on the car, the rear diffuser is not purely cosmetic(its mounts stretch till close to the rear wheels), must look kinda silly on my back on the showroom floor, checking the car out, haha so kinky looking up a car from the floor. This car will be a screamer and I just love it! On close inspection there is a real quality about the Clio 200, I flipped the sun visors, had a look at the engine bay, played with the air con vents and when I do sign up for one, I will be going for the Cup for sure, the Recaros nearly split me royals!! :rofl:

 

Will be at the motor show and check out the Meggy 250 as well, but my heart is set on the clio in about 6 months time and the reason I say that is because I am holding out for the new version that may have led fog lights. I kinda look into the future and sorta guess it will or might happen and for that reason alone will wait for the best 200 to be out. I told a close mate of mine and said the MX5 will be hot in a Crystal White Pearl and guess what 3 months after I said it Mazda released that colour.

 

Cheers

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Welcome Hengeli!

 

The best 200 is the 20th Anniversary LE in white 8) Renault doesn't do "half updates" i.e. there won't be a face-lift 200 with LED lights coming out.

 

I think you've made the right decision with the 200. I would definitely suggest you order a Cup in Alien Green 8)

 

For me:

Golf = practical + boring

MX-5 = impractical + fun

200 = practical + fun

 

therefore, 200 > Golf + MX-5 :mrgreen:

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In WHITE?! Nahhhhhhh, white cmon, white is for old people, ok I better stop slagging... Mate, I am paying easily $4k for the limited badges, black glossy top(some bum I guarantee will tag the top) and edition number :booty: , I would rather put money into a set of Speedlines, or keep the Cup alloys cos I think they don't look half bad at all, PLUS, I get my front intake and rear diffuser in Black! You can't beat Alien Green with Black, best contrast and it will be so hot, I will be fainting when I touch my lady when she gets to meet me.

 

Hengeli

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Hahaha well the funny thing is that the LE comes with the black front and rear and black speedlines. It's also Pearl White, as per your MX-5 call.

 

AG with black highlights and speedlines would be awesome though 8)

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Hey walkie, White on a MX5 Hardtop is untouchable, I have had a look on canadian car websites way before we got white here on the mazda. Also, White is the official racing colour in Japan, that country is unique - its smells, shopping habits and rail is world-class. I don't think another country will ever match their engineering marvel with regards to the Shinkansen(bullet train), Eurostar trains were only put into service this decade, where the Japs have had theirs since the 1970s.

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Going on a tangent, but white used to be the official racing colour for Germany too. That was until the Mercedes team famously stripped the paint off to bring the weight down, thus becoming known as the Silver Arrows. To me, however, white cars are usually associated with appliances... [ducks for cover]

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Whirlpool? Nah, Miele, Electrolux or Bosch at least :D

 

LOL@Wolf :) Reminds me - I saw a guy driving an esky the other day out in the 'burbs... but Anthony, please, don't 'band' me :P

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Whirlpool? Nah, Miele, Electrolux or Bosch at least :D

 

LOL@Wolf :) Reminds me - I saw a guy driving an esky the other day out in the 'burbs... but Anthony, please, don't 'band' me :P

 

Miele is french yeah? Maybe you can get away with that one without a banding.

 

My smeg dishwasher gave me so much grief, damn italians :)

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I know where you guys are coming from with your "appliance white" jibes, because normally I would agree. I am by default a blue car person, this is supported by the fact that I had a blue F1 Megane RS230 and was in raptures over the colour. But honestly, the ICE WHITE 20th with the contrasting black and anthracite just seems to work for some reason, and is SO much better than the horribly gaudy Gordini.

 

hengali, don't forget if you order a 200 in AG, that the yellow interior clashes 'orribly with the exterior.

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I personally like the white, looks great. Alien green is the new 'out there' colour. Racing blue was that colour for the 182 Cup. The gordini looks nice, I just think it should include recaros and speedlines and something else to live up to the name.

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I know where you guys are coming from with your "appliance white" jibes, because normally I would agree. I am by default a blue car person, this is supported by the fact that I had a blue F1 Megane RS230 and was in raptures over the colour. But honestly, the ICE WHITE 20th with the contrasting black and anthracite just seems to work for some reason, and is SO much better than the horribly gaudy Gordini.

 

hengali, don't forget if you order a 200 in AG, that the yellow interior clashes 'orribly with the exterior.

 

Sorry to go OT, but couldn't help but notice the above... did you have that here or overseas? Cos a couple of us (myself included) have seen a blue R26 with Recaro seats in the Melb burbs recently.

 

Oh, and Acid Green and gold - how much more Orstralian can yer get? :mrgreen:

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I was in Melbourne when I had the Megane F1, but it unfortunately didn't have the Recaros (some bull twang about them not conforming with the ADRs to start with). I have no idea who bought it after me, and I'm ashamed to admit it, but I can't even remember which number I had.

 

Dish, was it you I saw in Wonga Park on Saturday?

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Alien green is the new 'out there' colour. Racing blue was that colour for the 182 Cup.

I thought the Burnt Orange was more 'out there' for the 182 Cup than the FRB.

 

I'd also love a white 172 Phase 1, or sunflower yellow or FRB. Just about any flat colour for that matter. Reeks of motorsport :headbang:

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Alien green is the new 'out there' colour. Racing blue was that colour for the 182 Cup.

I thought the Burnt Orange was more 'out there' for the 182 Cup than the FRB.

 

I'd also love a white 172 Phase 1, or sunflower yellow or FRB. Just about any flat colour for that matter. Reeks of motorsport :headbang:

 

Possibly, but they came later, and there weren't many. 15 + 1 random order. I just remember how different the 182 looked in racing blue after most previous Clios sold here were quite understated.

 

I would have killed for a liquid yellow 182 Cup..

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... after most previous Clios sold here were quite understated.

Haha! Not the Phase 1's :wink:

 

SY :drool:

 

Nahh they don't count they are too rare.. and the 182 Cup was hotter anyway :booty:

He!He! Only yours, mate. That was a cracker of a car :headbang:

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Guys, I don't think what I am about to type warrants a new topic so here goes - I made a BIG mistake, I went to Subaru to have a look at what else I could get for $40 ish grand. Turns out a new Rex is now available, and the MY11 model has been beefed up with the STI body which includes front and rear fenders, the bumper also gets new treatment along with the back end, and the standard manual Rex now comes with quad exhausts!

 

It is a hoot of a car, and I don't think I have driven a car with that much power and grip, this baby had awesome launch control and the clutch is one heavy duty mother, 2 problems and they are minor is that the stereo is weak and the gear throw is a bit long but otherwise this car is serious thrill with all wheel drive. I have to think hard now if the Clio is still what I want. And don't get me wrong I love RENAULT but the Rex represents value for money and there is a space saver. Has anyone driven a MY11 Rex and generally does the turbo stand up to much punishment? I have a bad feeling the turbo will show problems after 60k kms, but I can't be sure. Any opinions on the WRX's life as a daily driver and reliability?

 

Thanks for reading guys,

 

Cheers,

Hengeli

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Before I bought my R26 I did the shop-around thing.

My first stop was the MY08 WRX - crap seats, crap stereo, weak motor, lots of body roll, great 4wd.

My second stop was the MPS3 - biggest problem was they couldn't sell me a blue one any time soon.

 

So I went to check out the RSM225 demo car. What a hoot that test drive was. I only went Renault because there were 2 unsold R26s left in the country. Had to have the LSD or the deal was off.

 

Fast forward 3 years. Subaru has upped the handling, changed the motor, and put a better audio system in it. In my experience Subaru makes motors that last well, even when used hard. If I were buying a new car today I would consider the RSM250Cup, but a WRX is much easier to buy (no lame insistence that you take certain options and have no access to others that Renault gives us here in Australia).

The Clio would be an absolute hoot to own, and I've have had exactly zero problems with my Megane, but the Subie is hard to look past.

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Even with the extra beef... i personally just can't get past the looks.

But other than that...very nice indeed.

If only it looked like a RSM250... or anything else for that matter. IMO of course.

Cheers,

WOLF

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Guys, I don't think what I am about to type warrants a new topic so here goes - I made a BIG mistake, I went to Subaru to have a look at what else I could get for $40 ish grand. Turns out a new Rex is now available, and the MY11 model has been beefed up with the STI body which includes front and rear fenders, the bumper also gets new treatment along with the back end, and the standard manual Rex now comes with quad exhausts!

 

It is a hoot of a car, and I don't think I have driven a car with that much power and grip, this baby had awesome launch control and the clutch is one heavy duty mother, 2 problems and they are minor is that the stereo is weak and the gear throw is a bit long but otherwise this car is serious thrill with all wheel drive. I have to think hard now if the Clio is still what I want. And don't get me wrong I love RENAULT but the Rex represents value for money and there is a space saver. Has anyone driven a MY11 Rex and generally does the turbo stand up to much punishment? I have a bad feeling the turbo will show problems after 60k kms, but I can't be sure. Any opinions on the WRX's life as a daily driver and reliability?

 

Thanks for reading guys,

 

Cheers,

Hengeli

 

 

Don't worry about the turbo, it will be fine. The issue is that you will pay a lot more for insurance, and your fuel bill will be huge if you drive hard. I drove a stock Rex for 2 weeks a while back and it returned about 18 litres/100km. A Clio will use about half that. You should compare the Rex to an RS Megane 250. I would go for the Meggy but it will cost more. Rexies need work, the brakes are rubbish and the suspension needs to be sorted from the outset. It will need swaybars and stiffer springs as a minimum. They are quick cars though, you need to decide if you want a rewarding drive or a fast car crying out for mods.

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Even with the extra beef... i personally just can't get past the looks.

But other than that...very nice indeed.

If only it looked like a RSM250... or anything else for that matter. IMO of course.

Cheers,

WOLF

 

:rofl:

 

Well, now that they do have the STi bodywork, it certainly makes for a more appealing package, especially at that price level, like you said. Even though I'm not usually one to care what others think about me, I couldn't live with the stigma of WRX ownership LOL (but I do make an exception for the 22B :drool: )

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Thanks Anthony, very practical advice with regards to insurance and fuel consumption, certainly gives me something to think about, the 200 is a track machine stock and has polish. The Rex gave me a stiff neck and my kidneys were all over the place after 40 minutes, a bit too hard and everyone wants to race you at the lights.

 

Hengeli

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

@ dank, yeah good news I have my settlement, so no rush with regards to car right now. My sp23 still has the looks for now. Yeah I have ruled out the Rex, but have added an XR6 to the mix so its the Ford or the Clio, might give it bit more time.

 

Cheers

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hengeli,

 

I had the opportunity to help drive (or run in) a friend's new WRX a few days ago, I can see why it would tick all the crosses for most performance car enthusiasts. It looks like they made an effort to bring back that mongrel feeling that attracted drivers. I found lots of hard plastic being used in what is a very nice interior, but BMW is doing the same thing too.

Grip and power wise its an awesome machine for $40K, heck I would love to see a match up between it and the Clio 200. I can see the Clio murdering it and outbraking it in the corners, the WRX would make up for corner exit and straight line speed.

 

It would really depend on your preference, the XR6 turbo with the WRX and Clio for company would only be a straight line machine. If I was average joe who did not go to the track and have never driven a renaultsport, I would be much tempted with the WRX, if you can get past the fuel consumption.

Also if you are considering the larger car, why not try out the SS Commodore?

 

I have not driven a Clio 200, I can only base this from my experience with a 197. Best of luck in the search, Renaultsports may not have the interior niceness or the outright raw power output but they have always been rated at the top for the enthusiasts driver's involvement and pleasure. Sounds like you need to reconsider a Megane 250 :wink:

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Everyone, I have made my decision. I will be making a move on the Gordini, now I need a good trade-in on my sp 23, OR I will choose to private sell her, then, making a bid on the CLIO, it will be from NSW, there are 3 Gordini and I will see which dealer will gimme a good price. I can't wait, because I will be driving HER across the Nullarbor to settle in Perth, and I won't worry about a spare tyre cos I know I WILL make it through South Australia fine. Here's wishing me luck on the Gordini at Col Crawford!!! Haha so happy I have gone with a CLIO with leather as well, I really need a good price to deal straight up. Even took a photo yesterday of the car, 9 pics all up, 9's my lucky number, as I am a soccer player and 9's my jersey number. Yippee!!!

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I just bought a car yesterday, and sorry to say its a subaru. It just has a dual function ie.family vehicle(when I decide to have kids with a woman I have met, *chuckles*), load lugger, all terrain trail vehicle and its smashing!! In a manual these cars cannot be broken, subies are a long-termer. Now, to hit the trails in a week or two. I test drove the clio for the 2nd time, just to be sure, while I do like it heaps, the OUTBACK just had too much going for it, all wheel drive, plus I am driving across the Nullarbor in an outback, it cannot get more aussie than that!!

 

Thanks guys, and I will still check into the forum to say hello, the renault is an awesome machine, untouchable in that price and is a true hot hatch, I am proud to say had I looked at a quick ride, it would get my vote anyday over a Golf GTI.

 

Cheers and best regards,

 

Andre

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