I bought a “replacement” 1995 MX-6 in 2012. I drove it from Ohio to Utah 29 hours almost non-stop, except for a 30 minute nap in Iowa. It has 100k fewer miles than the first car, and a straighter body and no rust on the top and a better interior, but (unsurprisingly) it has more rust on the bottom.
I was dismayed by the level of rust on car #2, once I got it home and tore into it. But it’s from Ohio, so I am the stupid one for hoping otherwise.
The goal is/was to restore a car, using parts from the other. And yet it hasn’t always been clear which car would be better as the receiver or donor.
Car #1 has more miles, top-side rust, a tired interior, a road-damaged body, but is mechanically well-maintained. Yet the mechanically well-maintained bits can be replaced again, by definition, so that’s not much of an advantage.
Car #2 has 100k fewer miles, a beautiful top-side, a fresher interior, a straight and solid body, but every joint on the bottom is corroding. Rust is insidious. And maintenance is lacking, but those bits can be replaced.
So ultimately, it turns into a question of:
I’m a male, so obviously I’m restoring car #2.