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Practical First Car...


Well-Known Member
Oct 31, 2004
Ontario, Canada
Ok, so I'm at that point where I need my first car. Now, I have three choices... All Jap, two out of three RWD. Where I live I experience ALL the seasons. Ontario, Canada. About 10km'h s from Ajax. So dry, wet, snow and icy conditions. Now my choices are...

'90-'93 Toyota Celica GT-S (no GT or any other garbage.)
'80's Toyota MR2
'late 80's-'90 Mazda RX-7 N/A (No leaky turbo mess)

Now I really really want an MR2 but what I want to know is how difficult is MR in the winter? Would adding sandbags to the rear and/or front help at all? I've been driving since I was 14 so it's not really an issue of basic experience but more advanced drivetrain experience so has anybody ever driven M/R in the winter?

Other than that my choices are 1) MR2 2) RX-7 N/A and 3) Celica GT-S.
Practical? Then Celica is obvious choise I think. It's the youngest, easier (cheaper) to maintain probably. But then... if you ever gonna track it, RWD is way more fun.

I would get RX-7 :)
I actually drive a car with similar layout (power, weight, RWD) and didn't have any problems in Finnish winter, as long as it's wearing proper spike-tyres.
The problem with the MR2 is where are you gonna add the sand bags?? there is absolute no space in the back, nothing, not even for a hot dog. And I think adding some sand in to the miniscul front "boot" would just make the rear even slippier (not that you could add more than 5kg 'cause there's no space there either).

RX-7 great car, but let's be honest if you're going for the cheap end it'll spend more time in the service garage than on the road and wankels aren't cheap to fix (well not here anyway).

That leaves the celica, spacious, not too fast or powerful, but still fun. Should be fairly reliable, not RWD but there's always the handrake to play with in the winter :)
besides RWD cars aren't that hard to drive in the winter as long as you know the basic knowledge of driving a RWD car. So if you buy one find an empty space where you can practise a bit and you'll have no problems driving even it would be very slippery and also like MXM said tyres are very important that thet are good.
So I take it MR2 is not practical at all, eh? Too bad. The thing with Celicas are they're more expensive to buy than an MR2 or an RX-7 but do have cheaper insurance. Guess it'll pay me back in the long run... thanks for the info! I realize that the RX-7 is very hard to maintain but I've heard the naturally aspirated engines are very realiable as opposed to the turbocharged ones. Can anybody support/confirm/deny that?
Honestly... I think you should go for the Celica... try finding the 4wd version... might be more useful
Another vote for the Celica here.

And yes, N/A engines are TYPICALLY more reliable than boosted. That said, a well-tuned, boosted engine will outlive an engine that some stupid kid buys big cams for, stuffs 'em in, and goes to the track with it without tuning.....proper tuning is the biggest factor in that statement.
IF you are looking for reliability... I really suggest you stay away from FC3S RX-7's... you'll end up with loads of problems
andyhui01 said:
Honestly... I think you should go for the Celica... try finding the 4wd version... might be more useful

Those are damn rare and about 4x more expensive and more unreliable. Turbocharged 4wd '90-'93 Celica stupidly called the All-Trac (why not GT4?) edition. Nah, if I was gonna buy AWD then I'd make it either an old Audi Quattro or ... an Impreza. But those are probably way outta my price range.
Whatever you do, don't get a Rolls Royce.
id say, depending on what youre looking to spend, you can get a really reliable 91-92 VW GTI 16v for well under 2k.....

or go for a 93-98 VR6 for less than 5...
I really really really REALLY wish they had Golf R32's here. I'd definietely buy one. Hm, I was thinking Golf but I'm really not a fan of the styling GTi or not. I'm definietely more performance orientated than for looks but the Golf I can't really come to terms with, unfortunatly.
I'd definately go for the RX-7. The dual headlamp Celicas are pretty sexy but, the RX-7 just blows it away. Whatever you do, don't get the MR2 unless your are either female or a hairdresser! Might as well get a nice white one if you are though! :p
hanasand said:
Celica. Because it looks better :shock:

heh, if i cared for looks then I wouldn't even have considered the 80's MR2's. Those were literally just boxes with an engine and four wheels.