I had a Mk1 MX-5 1.8 before I got my V6. Teriffic fun on A & B-roads in the summer with the roof down, less so on the M40 on a wet winter Sunday with a hangover! As I spend a fair bit of time on the motorway, it had to go. If you have a less interesting daily, great, but it was my only car and the bad circumstances happen a lot more than the favourable ones. Also, it was really bad on fuel for a 1.8 in a 1 tonne body, the best I ever got out of it was 34mpg and was more usually around the 30-32 mpg mark - the Alfa does 25-28!
Hope you enjoy it, Turtle, definitely glad I had one. Look out for seizing calipers and rotten sills just in front of the rear wheel, there's a drain hole there for the roof which needs regular unblocking, not a lot else goes wrong, though. The forums are fairly good (not as good as this one, though) and new and second-hand spares can be got reasonably from Autolink. Would recommend a hardtop if you're going to use it all year round, made a big difference to me in those winter months..!