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Should I buy this '86 300ZX or will I ruin it?

06-21-2010, 07:20 PM
So I test drove this 1986 300ZX today and it is in really good condition. The old dude selling it is like 75 years old, and is the original owner, and has babied this car from day one. It's the car you're always looking for, owned by an old guy that keeps it in his garage and never drives it. It has 130K miles. He's asking $5000 for it. He pulled a full cover off the car to show it to me. It has the occasional ding on the outside, but the paint is in great condition, and he says it's never seen snow. And I believe it. The interior is perfect, and EVERYTHING works. AC is ice cold, the all digital dash works perfectly, and he even has a full size spare that matches the wheels. Speaking of the wheels, they are in great condition too. He says he has put a new clutch in it, but other than that, it's all original. It is missing the rear shades, which he said somebody stole by just ripping them off the car.

So here's my problem. My dream Z is more of a '73 or thereabouts, but it'll be quite a few years until I get the time and money to restore one of those. So I just wanted to get a Z to drive until that day comes. So this would be my commuter. And it would unfortunately see snow during the Utah winter. It'll be parked in my covered car port, but I won't have a garage for about 4 more years till we buy a new house.

I really like the car, and it's history says it's a no brainer, but I feel like I would be disgracing it's history by driving it in the snow and parking it in a carport! Am I crazy? I don't put a lot of miles on my car, because I only have a 10 minute commute to work, and I ride a bike to work a few days out of the week during the summer. The minivan gets all the rest of our driving.

I think if the guy knew that I would be driving it in the snow, and keeping it in a car port, he wouldn't sell it to me. He says he's already turned down two guys that wanted it. But he said he'd sell it to me because he could tell I appreciated the car. Should I buy, or would the Z community kill me?

Edit: Sorry, here's a link to the ad. (http://www.ksl.com/index.php?sid=0&nid=443&tab=list/view&ad=2683892)

And here are the photos from the ad:

06-22-2010, 07:21 PM
Ok, same question applies for this '81 280zx 2+2 that I just found. It looks to be in even better condition than the '86 I posted, has 120K miles, and I'm really tempted.

I just feel that I'm going to beat it up, and I'll be sad. :frown: Also, if I start driving it daily, am I going to be able to get the years out of it that I want? I'd like to be able to drive it for another 6 or 7 years, but at this age, this car has got to be so fragile. While I would be driving it in the snow and whatnot, I do take very good care of my cars. So would this old thing last for me, or is it too fragile to be a DD? Or can I buy this car and have some good fun with it for a few years? I'm not afraid to dig in and do most repairs and maintenance myself, so would it be too expensive to maintain?

I'm SOOOO freaking close to pulling the trigger on this one, I could really use the advice of you car aficionados. This one in particular meets every one of my needs. 1. Has low miles 2. It seats four. (once in a blue moon, i do need to put my kids in it) 3. Automatic (while I prefer a manual, I'd like something that my wife can drive in a pinch, and she can't drive a stick.)

Here's the ad for this one if you're interested:

"80zx 2+2 BEST OFFER! California clean original. Was rubber undercoated no under body rott. Original miles and maintained with castrol gtx since new. Original owner was and older gentleman that drove it 4k each year. Has 4 new Dunlop Qualifers. Won't find another 280zx as clean and original as this one. Getting married gotta sell"

And a couple pics from the ad:

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