I met with Mike this afternoon, and spent a little time with his car. I am still out-of-town on business, but wanted to give you a quick summary of what I found:
First off, Mike seemed to be a very nice, honest guy. It's hard to tell after just one meeting, but that was my initial impression. We spent about 10 minutes chatting about the car, and then he handed me the keys and set me off by myself. Here are my comments:
Starting with exterior aesthetics:
-The paint had a number of scratches/chips here and there including the ones on the rear cover, and a long scratch on the roof.
-The paint was dull, and the car looked as if it has spent a portion of it's life sitting outside in the sun. A good glazing MAY help the paint, but it's hard to tell without trying.
-But, the body looks straight and tight, and I didn't find any obvious signs of body damage. The only funky think I noticed was that the driver's side door didn't feel aligned right when being closed. It felt like it might be sitting a little low, or maybe the latch needs some adjustment.
-The vinyl seats looked surprisingly good, and appeared practically new.
-The dash had several cracks around the vents and the glove box.
-The carpet may have been a little faded, but there was also allot of dirt, so it was hard to tell.
-There were a number of places where the panels were warping, the most obvious was the drivers-side door panel next to the glass (you could see the underside of the door panel from outside the car.)
-There was a plastic cover from the power seat mechanism laying in the hatch.
-Overall, it showed some wear and tear, and was consistent with the exterior condition.
-The engine was a bit dirty, with some (a little) oil showing on the cam covers.
-The cam covers/intake were dull, faded, and chipping. But this seems to be typical (mine was doing this at 45K miles.)
-Everything APPEARED to be there.
First off, it was different to drive a 5 speed, as I am so used to my auto. I drive a 5-speed Accord as my daily driver, and the 928's torque makes quite a bit of difference!!
-The only problem I noticed related to the engine (other than the coolant light) was when it was first started, it would try to stall. I believe this is related to the idle actuator. After you blipped the throttle once, it was fine.
-It drove very tight and straight. I went pretty easy on the car, as it was during the evening rush hour, and I didn't
know the area, but I did hit a few country curves, and had it up to about 70mph. I never felt any
shakes or rattles, it tracked tightly, and the engine felt very strong.
-My car has the stock exhaust w/RMB, and his one is a GOOD bit louder than mine. Mike said he copied Tom "the Power Broker's" exhaust. At first it seemed too loud, but by the time I got the car back home, I was really digging it.
-I did notice a rattling or jingling sound coming from somewhere under the car. This has to be something loose in the exhaust.
I am VERY picky about my car. The interior and exterior must be perfect at all times, so I am not used to seeing a less than perfect car. So, I am trying to be as objective as possible. The only real problems I saw (that you don't already know about) are related to appearance. It seemed very strong and tight mechanically. I guess the only known mechanical problems are related to the ABS, coolant light, initial idle problem, and that rattle/jingle from the exhaust area (hope it's not torque-tube related.)
I should be heading home around 4PM EST Thursday, and will try to give you a call from my car. If I can't get a good signal (which is quite possible) we can try to talk on Friday.
It was fun!