Ask AutoGuide No. 36
Unlike past installments of Ask AutoGuide we’re taking a moment to help one of our own this week. Don’t like it? Well then, how about you send us some car-buying questions then? How’s that sound? In any event road-test editor Mike Schlee could use a new ride. He’s the proud owner of a first-generation Mazda Miata that’s sitting just shy of 200,000 miles.
That’s an important automotive landmark to be certain but we fear for his safety. After more than two decades of harsh winters, the car’s floorboards have decomposed like the Speedwell’s hull. But a little spongy, water-logged timber didn’t stop the Pilgrims and likewise “strategically lightened” sheet metal hasn’t slowed Herr Schlee down.
Sure, Mike’s made a few cursory repairs to the foot wells, which to date have been surprisingly effective at keeping him from going Fred Flintstone but they probably aren’t up to the rigors of protecting him in a crash (while extremely light in weight there’s a reason automakers refrain from using papier mâché). Additionally many of the car’s electronics are like Wal*Mart employees… they only work part time. He deserves better!