How much to pay
This varies wildly depending on age, condition and what sort of power, suspension and bodykit it’s packing. But note that the prices of really cared for original cars have been creeping up over recent years.
Minimum you want to pay is £7,000, which appears to be enough to secure a UK car with 90,000 miles or so and standard (or lightly modified) specification. At the other end of the scale, some people will ask £20,000 for the same car in tip-tip condition and a far smaller number on the odometer.
Is it worth that much? Only you, the buyer, can really decide. But if a car’s engine has been cared for properly, higher mileages shouldn’t be feared if they make a car vastly more affordable. And smaller mileages can hint at underuse, and the problems that brings with it.
What you’ll pay in between those sums is entirely at the behest of your budget, and the spec you’re after. If you’re keen to stay relatively standard, then the more desirable Japanese market cars, such as the various Type R versions, can be had for around £13,000 in good nick and with circa-70,000 miles. With so few cars officially sold in the UK, it’s worth embracing the idea of JDM examples unless you have the patience of a saint.
Just be rigorous with your checks, and ready to haggle whenever you think something might need a fix, or if you spy modifications you’ll be eager to reverse. And don’t get carried away busting your budget paying for mods you really don’t want.