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1991 Mazda MX5 Limited Edition

Sold Price


  • Mileage~23,972
  • TransmissionManual
  • Engine1.6L
  • LocationBasingstoke


1991 Mazda MX5 Limited Edition

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Darren Rungasamy
Automotive Editor, Photographer and Consigner

The MX5 delivers simple thrills with reliability and style, a modern cult classic.

Mazda struck gold in 1989 when it released what is now considered one of the most inspired designs of the era. It cleverly combined the sensibility and dependability that made Japanese cars popular with aspects from the heyday of British sports cars. However, it wasn't just a copy and paste job. Mazda was meticulous with their process in getting the car right the first time, everything down from the engine note to the compact styling was carefully considered. The Mk1 MX-5 is the vehicle you want if you want something with an authentic vintage vibe but without dependability problems. Now firmly established as a modern classic, the MX5 soon established itself as the best small, affordable sports car ever made.

As a milestone to celebrate the MX5's first year of production, 250 "British Racing Green" with tan leather seats were produced exclusively for the British market between March and December 1991. It cut a distinctive sight in the showrooms, thanks to its colour-coded 15" BBS alloy wheels, tan leather seats and deep pile carpet, along with its wooden steering wheel, hand-brake grip and gear knob. This is car number 21 out of the 250 and comes with a full-service history, its original numbered leather owner's wallet with a certificate to prove the vehicle's authenticity, many of its previous MOT certificates and a "super, smashing, great" previous owner! The current owner has had the car for the last 12 years but has only added around ~6,000 to its ~23,972 miles. It comes with an MOT to May 2023.

This auction listing was written from information supplied by Darren after meeting Jeff the owner, and having visited and photographed the vehicle.

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Secure Auctions

We verify all our sellers and buyers to keep our community safe whilst also providing the highest levels of website security.

Full Transparency

8 out of 10 people that buy cars via our service don’t feel the need to visit due to the transparency and thoroughness of our listings.

Vehicle Delivery

We're there every step of your buying journey and will even arrange pick-up and delivery of your new vehicle.

Meet the owner

The Mazda has only ever got wet once during my 12 years of ownership, I've really cherished this car.

Jeff bought the car as a retirement present for himself and a reminder of the open-top British sports cars that he'd had enjoyed in the past. He appreciated the MX5's modern features and quality that have made the experience so painless over the past 12 years.

He has done the car a huge justice by maintaining the Mazda while keeping the mileage down to a minimum, and has enthused about the car's incredible reliability. However, due to personal circumstances the car has seen very little in terms of use in the last two years and he feels it best to allow someone else to enjoy the car. Jeff will be happy to answer your questions about the car in the comments below.

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The car has retained much of its originality and has been exceptionally well looked after, especially keeping it out of the rain.

Wheels and Tyres

The colour coded 15" BBS alloy wheels are a standard fit for this limited edition, and other than a little wear noted on the centre hubs, they are in very good condition.

The owner fitted a full set of Toyo tyres in 2015 following a recommendation, and all have plenty of life left in them. The boot item is a space saver. View the picture gallery to see the detail.


The structure of the car is solid with no outstanding issues. The floor pan looks decent, with just very minor signs of age noted in places. The inner wings, sills, engine and boot bay are tidy.

Looking very closely, the only observation we had was just the slightest evidence of imperfections on the lip of the nearside rear arch was felt but nothing that would constitute immediate attention. All of the doors open and close with ease, with all of the metalwork looking to hang correctly with even panel gaps and no damage, asides from a minor ding spotted on the top of the window frame, and one to the top of the offside rear wing behind the drivers door. The bumpers are well placed and flush with the bodywork.

Please take the time to look through the hi-resolution images we have taken for a more detailed look at the exterior, for you to get a feel for the condition.


The paint is very good throughout, with an even colour match and no significant blemishes of note, other than a handful of light chips on the front bumper and the odd light scuff or age-related blemish elsewhere. The nearside paint finish displays evidence of slight orange peeling. Both of the lower sides of the car have an intact stone guard paint finish.

The images taken are from various angles and reflections to show you the car as you would see it if you were standing there for yourselves and for you to make your own minds up on the condition.

Glass and Trim

The glass is in excellent shape throughout, with no damage worth pointing out. The trim is in good shape, and all of the glass seals and door rubbers are intact.

The front number plate placement on the nose is correct for the "Limited Edition". The light lenses are all intact and functional, including the seamless operation of the front pop-up headlamps. The boot rack was fitted early in the car's life and is in very good shape.


You're greeted with tan leather seats and a very appealing and clean interior, what you'd expect for a low mileage example.

Seats and Carpets

Finished in tan leather, paired with the "British Racing Green" exterior, you'd be forgiven if you forgot this was a Japanese roadster. The seats have lasted very well, with only the inner portion of the driver's side bolster showing a little coat of wear. Both retain a firmness that is in line with the car's mileage and usage.

The carpets are excellent, with no issues in terms of wear or damage. All, including the boot item, were bone dry. The door cards are in good shape. Watch the video review to see the whole cabin.


The dashboard presentation indicates the level of care lavished on the car, with no notable damage or ageing noted. The plastics have lasted well, with the dials, control and switches all without any damage. The middle of portion of the dashboard is wrapped in a matching leather, and on the passenger side above the glovebox sits the numbered "Limited Edition" badge.

All are said to function, including the electric windows which operate without strain. The Pioneer tape deck is a retrofitted item and the car is fitted with a boot-mounted multi-CD changer.

Steering Wheel / Gear Stick

The wooden steering wheel is also part of the "Limited Edition" package, and is in good shape with no significant wear. The gearstick too is part of the standard fitting, but shows a little more signs of age and has minor wear noted on the gaiter but otherwise in keeping with the pristine condition of the cabin.


The Mazda feels engineered to last, it has never let the current owner down, there's plenty of life left in this roadster.

Engine and Gearbox

Free of any mechanical modifications or upgrades, the engine is straight out-of-the-box standard. While the presentation reflects the age of the car somewhat, it is still very clean. It has the paperwork to back up its positive upkeep and as expected starts on the button with no issues. It last had a major service with belts and water pump changed in May 2021, and hasn't even covered 50 miles since.

The car idles well with no clatter noted upon start-up. As the engine warmed up, the engine still sounded tight, with no exhaust smoke other than he expected condensation. The gearbox was demonstrated to be ultra-precise with short movements, with no reported issues with the clutch. Watch the video to see the detail.

Suspension and Brakes

The car despite its lack of significant use in recent years is moved around to ensure the brakes are kept free and during the short test drive, there was evidence to back this up and was effective while the car was on the move.

The steering wheel remained true throughout with no pulling. The suspension was tested at low speed over the speed humps, which resulted in no ill effects. The car's road-holding is said to be good with no unwanted clonks or creaks.

The Drive

The MX5 twin-cam 1.6-litre engine offers more than enough sufficient performance, which complements the fine handling and grip. Combined with the slick sweet gearchange and well-weighted power steering, the MX5 is an absolute joy to drive. Destined to be classic from day one, the car feels deceptively fast, thanks to the low seating positioning and the firm but never harsh ride. However, the light clutch, ease of control and sensible ergonomics make it an ideal day-to-day car if needed.

You can't go wrong with an Mk1 MX-5 whether you're seeking to get into classic cars for the first time or just want something different but dependable to drive around on the weekends.

Electrics and Other

The roll bar is a non-standard fitting, which has been added by the current owner. The roof and tonneau cover are in excellent shape, both appear to be the original items and display very little in terms of age. The rear screen is clear and free of significant blemishes. The roof raises and lowers without any issues.

History and Paperwork

A watertight history and a celebrity former owner is in the paperwork, this Limited Edition with low mileage should be a interesting proposition for collectors and enthusiasts alike.

Registered on the 1st of August 1991, one of the early owners of this car was none other than "Bullseye" Jim Bowen. Having kept it for around a year, it found a succession of owners under several number plate changes, who didn't add much more than 1000 miles a year. Around 2001 it was stored for 7 years by its previous owner, who'd used it for around 3 years previously. Their plan was to present the car to his son as a 21st birthday present and it received a full service (including a new timing belt) and having seen its brakes shot-blasted as a part of its recommissioning.

The current owner bought the car in 2010 and retained it mainly for light weekend use, keeping it garaged throughout that time. As well as retaining most of its old MOTs, the car has been serviced by both Mazda and independent garages throughout its life. It has not needed any significant mechanical repairs, maintaining that famous reputation for Mazda reliability. A full-service, covering a new timing belt and water pump was carried out in 2021 and the car is sold with an MOT to May 2023. It comes with two keys.

We’ve done all our usual seller checks, including photo ID, and V5 and also actioned an HPi check on the vehicle.

We've summarised our view on the car based on information gained from the seller in the listing above, however, and as you can see, we go to great lengths to photograph and video the car in hi-resolution detail - this has been done for you to make your own assessment from the comfort of your sofa. So please sit back, have a cuppa and take your time to review everything on this listing in order to make your own assessment on the vehicle's condition. Viewings are also welcomed with all our listings, so please get in touch with us to arrange a suitable time - we just need to speak to you first and receive a valid photo ID before confirming.

If there's anything you're unsure about, no matter how small, then please first ask the owner in the comments area below before placing your bid/s, as bids can't be retracted and form a binding contract if you win the car - just like a traditional auction house.

Service History
Date Type Mileage
05-05-2022 MOT 23,970
07-05-2021 Service 23,946
07-05-2021 MOT 23,946
05-05-2020 MOT 23,630
18-03-2019 MOT 23,205
13-03-2018 MOT 22,864
14-03-2017 MOT 22,388
15-03-2016 MOT 21,760
12-03-2015 MOT 21,655
13-03-2014 MOT 20,938
21-03-2013 MOT 20,335
16-03-2012 MOT 19,781
21-03-2011 MOT 18,722
23-03-2010 MOT 17,781
12-02-2009 MOT 15,731
13-02-2008 Service 10,968
06-02-2008 MOT 10,968
26-04-2001 MOT 10,676
27-04-2000 MOT 10,143
08-05-1999 MOT 9,220
08-05-1998 MOT 9,071
04-05-1996 MOT 8,013
22-04-1995 MOT 7,414
02-02-1994 Service 6,300
13-08-1993 Service 2,485
10-08-1992 Service 1,128
01-09-1991 Service 520
Key Details
  • ModelMX5 Limited Edition
  • TransmissionManual
  • Reg. Date01.08.1991
  • CC1,597
  • Mileage~23,972
  • HistoryComprehensive
  • ColourBritish Racing Green
  • Interior ColourTan
  • Interior TrimLeather
  • Chassis #JMZNA18B200117664
  • Engine #B6736343
  • Last Service07-05-2021
  • Engine RebuildNo
  • MOT05-05-2023
  • MOT ExemptNo
  • Road Tax ExemptNo
  • Former Keepers7
  • Tyre BrandToyo
  • Tyre Age2015
  • Security SysAlarm
  • # of Keys2
  • VisitedYes
  • Sale TypePrivate
  • Owned~12 Years
  • Key FeatureLow mileage "Limited Edition" (21/250)
  • Auction ID443973

Vehicle Sold

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Ask Questions
Post a comment or ask the owner a question about the car.
Adam - Trade Classics

*** RESERVE REMOVED *** Jeff has decided to remove the reserve so the car will be sold to the highest bidder tonight. Cheers Adam


Hi Jeff,
Just been looking through the pics. On the interior pics of the A pillars on both sides is it just unfortunate reflections? Picture 33/140 and 108/140


Hi Jeff,

Just a couple of questions. Have you had any of the bodywork painted since you got the car, or was the previous work done prior to purchasing.

I notice that their is a significant gap in servicing between two thousand and eight and two thousand and twenty one, when 13K was covered. Do you know if any of the fluids/filters/belts were changed during this time and not recorded anywhere.

Many thanks,



Hi Jeff,
She looks like a nice car. However I note that there appears to be some rust on the rear sills. May I ask if you’ve had anyone inspect the car for problems in that area. I understand that they are particularly prone to rusting from the inside out on the front/rear sills both inner and outer
Many thanks


Vehicle Location

Basingstoke, Hampshire

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