Ichiban – 1992 and 1991 Mazda Miata pair

Since they got first place on the Sports and Exotic Car list, and today seems to be double (or quadruple) feature day, here’s a pair of winners, at least in terms of quantity sold. Though scorned by many car nuts, and many sports car nuts, there’s a lot to be said for the Miata, both in terms of the revolution it started and its ability to be something to many people. You can pick up a new, relatively powerful Miata for up to $30K-ish, or a simple, light drive-a-slow-car-fast first-generation Miata for as little as a few hundred bucks. And in between, there are all kinds of permutations, stock, hot-rodded by owners, Spec Miatas, and factory hot rods. If you don’t want to spend a lot for a roadster and want a car that will last around 200,000 miles well-maintained, you really can’t go wrong with one. So yes, trusty for sure, and if you buy a snow-state Miata, you can have some rust too. For this episode, we’re focusing on a couple of owner-modified cars. You can find our first one, this 1992 Mazda Miata turbo, for sale for $3500 in Tacoma, WA.

1992 Mazda Miata turbo left rear

As mentioned in a previous article, stancing is a trend that seems to have grown out of the VW scene and, well, everyone probably has their own opinions on it. Nonetheless, most of these cars are on adjustable coil-overs, so presumably they can be adjusted to normal ride height. The turbo, which is said to be rebuilt and part of a Greddy turbo kit, puts out 8 psi, which should be low enough to not do any major damage. The car also has a new soft top and fancy-pants dished wheels with new tires. Oddly, for a car that’s had significant engine modification, the seller does not offer any pictures of the engine compartment (or the interior, for that matter).

1992 Mazda Miata turbo right front

The paint has a nice gloss, and overall the car makes a good impression. Unfortunately, the seller gives no details on the ownership experience – is he selling because of massive turbo lag which makes the tail slide sideways on every wet day? Do the coil-overs make the car ride like a mining cart? The turbo and the Miata handling should make a fun backroads point-and-squirt machine. If you can’t handle the thought of a tail-happy turbo (hey, it can’t be worse than a Porsche 930), perhaps you want to try this 1991 Mazda Miata, also for sale in Tacoma, WA for $3300.

1991 Mazda Miata white riht front

This car has a similar aesthetic treatment but a stock powertrain. While the seller offers some pretty lame pictures, including one blurry shot from across a parking lot, it is said to have a newly rebuilt engine, slick shifting transmission, and a good interior and top. This car is not as ridiculously low, and doesn’t seem to have the fenders rolled. A slight adjustment up would probably still give the right aesthetic, while improving usability. So which would you pick – black or white? Both could be yours for half the cost of a new econobox.

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One Response to “Ichiban – 1992 and 1991 Mazda Miata pair”

  1. steve in podunk Says:

    I just sold a 91 Miata; stock, stick. a/c, new top. no rust, no problems, nice radio and 180K miles. I sat on it forever and finally let it go for $1800. What a great driving lil’ car but too cramp for me and too cool for the hillbillies here in Podunk.

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