Finding a good roadster was quite a problem at the end of the 80s and that’s why Mazda wanted to solve that issue with a new model named MX-5. The MX-5 is also known as Mazda Miata and it’s one of the most coveted models from the manufacturer.
What makes it so special? The fact that it has 2 seats, it’s very lightweight when compared to other cars and it also has a minimal mechanical complexity. Ever since its creation in 1989, this car has been quite the success all thanks to the fact that it was an evolved version as well as a spiritual successor for the old school British Sports cars like the Lotus Elan and the Triumph Spitfire.
Up until 2016 there have been 4 generations of Mazda Miata and each one has tried to add new technologies and better control in order to create the ultimate roadster. This model is even up to this date one of the best-selling convertible sports car with 2 seats in history. 1 million Mazda Miatas have been sold up until April 2016 and it’s still going strong.
The first generation had a 1.6l straight 4 engine that was upped to a 1.8l model in 1993. The second generation went with a better engine and it also brought in some new esthetic changes. Basically, it offered a rear window made entirely out of glass. It also featured fixed headlights which offered some extraordinary results.
The third generation of Mazda Miata is where the 2.0l engine was introduced and the final generation managed to add even more power, all while slightly modifying the interior and adding new tech.
What makes Mazda Miata very interesting is the fact that the car has a unibody construction and it does feature front and rear subframes which can be detached. They also added a longitudinal truss which helps keep a very good connection between the differential and the engine. As a result, the model is very easy to drive and the handling is responsive.
There are a few Mazda Miata models that have anti-lock braking systems and a limited slip differential. The NC models also feature traction control. And while the initial Mazda Miata released in 1989 was light at around 1 ton, the latter models including the fourth generation are considerably heavier.
The front and rear wheel balance is neutral which helps the car have a neutral handling. The latter models added oversteer which is easy to control, one of the main reasons why the car was included in stock car races to begin with.
Mazda Miata is an award winning car and it received the “best sports car of the 90s” from Sports Car International as well as the distinction of being the 2005 Australian car of the Year. It was also the 2005 and 2006 car of the year in Japan and many consider it a standout car in the entire industry.
From the great design to unique features and a very good price, the Mazda Miata is a winner in the eyes of many car lovers. This is one of the main reasons why people still see it as the standout roadster more than 25 years after its launch. And with the fourth generation being the best inception of the model yet, we can definitely look forward to more Mazda Miata models in the future!