Our cars: Mk1 Mazda MX-5 Eunos S-Special

Did you make any car-related new year’s resolutions this New Year? I did – not to buy any cars. In 2014, I sold my beloved Mazda MX-5, bought a BMW 5 Series which turned out to be a shed, and ended up with a Ford Puma which I actually rather liked.

My new year’s resolution lasted four days. Yes, on the 4 January I was stood outside a gentleman’s house in Northampton, chatting about cars and kicking the tyres of his MX-5, while a knowledgeable mate went all over it with a magnet.

It was someone I followed on Twitter who was selling it. While wasting a bit of time over the Christmas break, I’d scrolled through the social network and noticed he needed rid of his bright red Eunos. It made me think about mine, and how much I missed it.

I asked a few questions, out of curiosity more than anything, and the very helpful seller not only answered them in a very positive manner (MOT? Eight months. Rust? None. Price? £500), he even went out of his way to send detailed pictures and videos of the car.

It’d have been rude not to take a look. At £500 it was going to be a shed, I could make my excuses, and go home satisfied that my new year’s resolution had remained intact.

But it was tidy. Surprisingly tidy. Sure, it had a few marks where a previous owner had seemingly gone sideways into solid objects at low speed, but that just meant I could do the same and not feel guilty. He was right about the lack of rust, too.

The interior needed a valet, but it was £500 for heaven’s sake. I was considering spending double that on a new laptop in the January sales.

So I bought it. I didn’t even bother negotiating. It was the easiest sale ever – I was happy, the seller was happy. He even chucked in a pile of spares – wheels, an exhaust system, some new suspension. And the number plate? Apparently a previous owner wants it back. I hope he doesn’t. I’m getting quite attached to Joe.

When I got home I did some digging into what I’d bought. Technically it’s not an MX-5 – it is, in fact, a Eunos, made in 1993 but imported to the UK in 2003. That’ll partly explain the lack of rot. And it’s an S-Special, meaning it has a few nice features (and a few not so nice – including the awful Bilstein shocks, which made me check to see if the suspension had been replaced with bricks).

This one’s staying for a while. Until I can afford a new one, anyway.

Our cars: Mk1 Mazda MX-5 Eunos S-Special