For our dilemma again against used, this time, we are going with a couple of roadsters that, for more or less 400,000 pesos, offer the experience without roof from two similarly theoretical optics, but in practice, they hardly resemble. Also, it weighs the question of whether to go with a “conventional” brand or a more “aspirational” premium used.
NEW – Mazda MX-5 i Sport
The MX-5 with a low beam h13 led bulb is a very important car for the whole car-loving community because, 30 years ago, it knew how to combine the reliability. Japanese vehicles already recognized with the fun with which small English roadsters always associated with the longitudinal engine, low weight, and rear propulsion, the latter responsible for not a few stereotypes and disappointments in which they spent more time in the workshop than on the road.
It is a low weight that continues to characterize the MX-5 but also a chassis carefully designed for an excellent balance, sensations difficult to find in a modern car, and an increasingly unusual simplicity. A big culprit that this convertible in Miniature barely exceeds the empty ton in a world in which gigantism is almost a plague and everything tends to be more oversized.
For less than 400,000 pesos, we have access to an authentic sports car in a broader sense of the term, which together involves precision, effectiveness, and proper mechanical arrangement. If only a blunt acceleration sought, more than one compact hatchback is a better option.
There are great sacrifices in space and capacity to carry objects or luggage, but from those 388,900 pesos, there are three years or 60,000 kilometers of warranty and services that, up to 40,000 km, will not exceed 3,000 pesos.
USED - BMW Z4 sDrive18i 2014
There is little more aspirational for this amount of money than a BMW roadster, and the Z4 in its access specification is the entry step to what seems a formula very similar to the Mazda: a two-seater, longitudinally positioned engine, rear propulsion … but even there come the similarities.
Despite the name “18i”, which a few years ago was a direct condemnation of the slowness, this variant equips a two-liter turbo lowered to 156 horses, but with a healthy torque of 199 lb-ft. Its official performance is rather modest. Still, good places are left over so that with a reprogramming it is giving the 184 horses of a sDrive20i, a good idea to compensate (in part) a car half a ton heavier than the MX-5, because we do not talk about a sportsman looking to return to the basics but something.
The point is that with a turbocharged engine, you have to be more attentive to maintenance, do not overdo an oil change, or put a cheaper one or a different specification. Contrary to the Mazda, the box is an eight-speed automatic that, in cars that must already pass 50,000 km and could even touch or exceed 100,000 kilometers, could require an imminent fluid change, so in manuals, it specified that they sealed “forever.” There are plenty of dilemmas of whether or not to do it between different specialists, but it is worth considering and advising.
Given the state of our streets and that at the end of the day, there is a five-year use in tow. In addition to the latent possibility that the guarantee has expired and the extended coverage was not acquired. The complex system of folding of the hard roof between gaskets, lubrication and that does not tend to lock. That adds to the normal maintenance of critical wear components, whether bushings and, incidentally, tires, which are also run-flat and, as we have seen, cost from about 3,000 pesos the unit if you opt for good quality and brands equivalent to those of origin.
Yes, both are convertible, but they point to priorities so different that it is not easy to give a verdict towards one or the other. The rational, sensible alternative that does not sacrifice in enjoyment is the MX-5. It is a fun vehicle that is not going to demand the portfolio in delicacies or major services. The Z4 does not deny in extra comfort among accessories, better soundproofing, more space, and a set ready for longer trips. At the cost of higher fuel consumption and whoever is encouraged by one should not ignore having a background extra for spare parts and visits to the workshop that will inevitably require in its condition of use. The BMW may cost 400,00 when purchased, but maintaining it is a very different story from a new Mazda that little will ask.
If they put us to take responsibility for their spending and their bag, we go with the Mazda.