25th Anniversary Mazda MX-5 Miata unveiled at New York International Auto Show
While the Mustang hit the big 5-0, releasing it's new anniversary edition, Mazda was also celebrating a milestone with it's 25th Anniversary of the MX-5 Miata. The special "silver" edition was based on a hard top convertible, with both a manual and an (sigh...) automatic transmission in its iconic "Midlife Crisis Red" paint job. Only 100 of the 25th Anniversary Edition roadsters will be available to US buyers.
On the show room floor we got to take a little stroll down memory lane with Mazda's exhibit of all Miatas past, present and future. In the 1990's the Mazda Miata was exceedingly popular and not to mention, bad ass - to be seen walking across the parking lot and climbing into a cherry red Miata, and driving away was pretty damn cool - even if you were 6'3 and looked like a clown getting into a clown car.
Roadsters were becoming quite the popular trend back then and the car of choice for business men who wanted wanted some obvoius attention... for men who wanted to show the world just how big their... uh... errr... ambitions were. For non-car savvy, gold digging women, who were knocked off their feet by the sight of a roadster, the Miata was an unbelievable chick magnet, without a doubt. While you may have had trouble rounding the bases inside the car due to it's compact nature, it was definitely capable of reeling her in and transporting her back to your place. It's small size also gave it an advantage with city driving and parking. For men (and women) who really knew their automobiles, starting with a bargain budget price tag of $14,000 back in 1990, it played second fiddle to those who's pockets were deep enough for a BMW Z Series Roadster, which has traditionally always costed about twice as much - but then again, you are getting two extra cylinders, and twice as much horsepower - a relative 167 hp, to 240-300 hp in the Z4, depending on which trim you get. While you're not going to be drag racing your Miata, against any German Craftsmanship, because lets face it, you could potentially get you smoked by a VW Beetle, sputtering in at 210 hp, we do give great props to Mazda for producing a good quality, affordable automobile for people who have always wanted a fun and sporty, two-seater convertible without a healthy Wall Street Salary. Over the years the Miata has maintained it's popularity and is in the the Guinness Book of World Records for being the "Best Selling, Two Seat, Open Top Sports Car" and not without good reason!
While the Miata girls may come in blonde, brunette and ginger, Midlife Crisis Red (Metallic Soul Red) is the only color the 25th Anniversary MX-5 will be wearing. With it's new face-lift, the body style was everything you'd ever expect from a Miata with it's ever evolving roundness, as well as modern roadster... which, in my opinion is one of those cars that hasn't aged much over the years... walking through the gallery of Miatas, the Mazda Miata has always looked like, well, a Mazda Miata. It's become more sleek, stylish, flashy and modern - but the Miata has always maintained such a signature look that sets it apart from other roadsters that you can recognize it's make and model instantly, or pick it out from a line up, no matter what year it is. Mounted on 17 inch, Dark Gunmetal 10-spoke wheels, with a hand painted dash panel, and an almond/black, leather, two-toned interior, the limited edition is finished off with a power retractable hard top. The difference in appearance from the standard model to the limited edition 25th Anniversary model, possibly just a few badges and emblems reminding you of it's silver anniversary milestone. Under the hood, is a predictable 2.0-liter, four-cylinder, 167 horse power burst of street legal fury.
One of the most exciting features of the car was what was being displayed in addition to it... the SKYACTIV chassis for the 2016, promising to make the car 14% lighter, with improved suspension and handling. It will also include SKYACTIV technology such as all-electric steering, electric climate control and regenerative braking. Attempting to move it's appeal to a younger audience, we are looking forward to the Miata's release in the spring.