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Buying advice

Hi all,
I am finally getting round to buying my first MX5. Over the years I have owned all sorts TVR's MG's SLK's etc but never an MX! so where do I start? I have a budget of £8 to £10k sterling but the model range and trims is huge, also as my Motorbikes hog the garage it's going to have to live outside. Any pointers would be great, do soft tops actually keep water out? (my MG's leaked like sieves) or am I better with a hard top? which engine? which trim/model is best and what do i need to look out for? I ,look forward to your opinions, I would love to know with the benefit of hindsight what current owners would have bought