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Mazda MX-5 Miata (2005 and earlier)

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Comments

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,458
    discovered yesterday that the highest point of a Miata's top is slightly lower than the door handle on a Hummer H2.

    If you want a good perspective on the true size of a Miata, park between a Tahoe and an H2.

    At least you can see to back up by looking under them!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (daughter stole that one), and 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again)

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,458
    part of the problem is the light weight on the rear end. The Blizzaks should help quite a bit, but if you need more traction, put 50 pounds of cat litter or sand (in bags, of course) in the trunk.

    My 2001 has summer tires on it, and stays in the garage if it is particularly cold or if the ground is slippery. Can be fun when you hit a patch of ice though!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (daughter stole that one), and 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again)

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    No thanks.

    Slipping on dry surfaces, when I want to, is fun.

    Slipping on wet/icy surfaces, when I don't want to, is scary.

    I once did a 180 in the rain and was facing traffic. Imagine if an H2 had been behind me with its poor braking...

    -juice
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    Has anyone noticed the bumper height of the Hummer H2? I thought there were govt regulations regarding the height of the bumper, something like bumpers must be at the right height so contact is made in collisions. I mean Ford put a special bar on the Expedition/Excursion so that if the bumper went over the car's, the bar would act as a backup and invoke the car's crumple zone. Hummer appears to have made no concession here. I was sitting behind a Hummer in my Miata and noticed the front end would go completely under the truck, with the first contact being made to the huge rear tires and greatly increasing the chance of being decapitated or crushed by the rear end. This is flat out dangerous to any car, not just the Miata! I can't believe GM would allow such a disregard to the safety of other motorists. I would hope insurance companies at least slam the owners of these ridiculous beasts with high insurance rates.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,458
    why should they have higher insurance rates? If you run into the back of one, you will probably be at fault, in addition to headless. The Hummer might need the rear bumper touched up though.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (daughter stole that one), and 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again)

  • revdrluvrevdrluv Posts: 417
    In parts of Europe pedestrian safety is being implemented as a big part of their crash test ratings. You wouldn't see a Hummer scoring high on that test.
  • While I'm not going to advocate ruining cars by making them fully pedestrian collision safe, I definitely think that there should be a height limit on bumpers.

    stick guy - no matter what direction the Hummer (or many full size trucks/suvs) hits or is hit from, in any accident, it is going to do much more automotive/physical damage to the other car/person.
  • Thanks for the kitty litter idea. I'll try it.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The Hummer is over 6000 lbs so it's exempt from all kinds of regulations. Trucks already have it easier than cars, 3-ton vehicles have it even easier.

    Did you know the Monroney doesn't even have to state the EPA fuel mileage on an H2? It doesn't. Owners whined to JD Power and that's why their IQ score was so low.

    As if poor mileage ought to be a surprise...

    Any how, many exemptions were intended for fleet/commercial vehicles, IMO any passenger vehicle, whether it's a car or truck, no matter the weight, should have to meet the same safety standards as cars.

    Commercial vehicles require special training and licensing for the driver, the H2 doesn't.

    -juice
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Sorry 'bout my rant, bringing this back on-topic, I'd like to see height limits not only on bumpers, but also on head lights.

    Many SUVs have headlights above my eye level in the Miata. Funny thing is I sometimes look underneath them to see up ahead.

    -juice
  • revdrluvrevdrluv Posts: 417
    I wonder if now that foreign marks are eating up a larger portion of what used to be a US only segment, regulations will be applied to large privately owned vehicles? Leaving it open used to give our guys an edge in the market place that they sorely needed. Now it is just helping the competition gain ground.

    I don't think I should be punished for choosing to drive a smaller, more fuel-efficient car while these large, inefficient and dangerous vehicles are given a free ride.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,854
    Okay, let's veer back on topic. Somebody grab the wheel before we head into the SUV Board!

    MODERATOR

  • Does 3000 rpms @ 60 mph seem about right for this car ? I have owned this MX-5 for a short time and enjoy the pep . The rpm to mph ratio is higher than other sport cars I have owned - thanks
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    That sounds perfectly normal. The 89-92's with the 1.6L engines where especially rev-happy, a characteristic which many enjoy. My 02 would do about 3,600 RPM at 70 mph or so and that was with a 6-speed!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yep, that's about right. The engine makes peak torque at 5500rpm, so it needs high revs to have any sort of acceleration on the highway.

    It's not geared for 75+ driving, tell you that.

    -juice
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    Not unless you're in 3rd gear that is. ;)
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,458
    The new European pedestrian regularions would legislate the Miata right out of existence. No way the current design would pass.

    3K at 60 is about what my '01 5 speed runs. Does take a while to get used to cruising at 70!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (daughter stole that one), and 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again)

  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    I'm considering replacing my 92 Miata with a 90 RX7 convertible. Would I be crazy to do such a thing? I've owned an 84 RX7 for 2 years and know the care needed for a rotary engine. This RX7 is beautiful: red (new paint but no accident suuposedly), power new top, new exhaust and new shift linkage and bushings, new tires, JVC Cd player with 10" Kenwood sub, kenwood speakers, and alpine amp, leather, all power, BBS wheels, 5 speed manual, cold AC, 108000 miles (my Miata has 144,600). Price would be around $4k and I'm within driving distance to pick it up. I've always loved the looks of the RX7 convertible and it's much rarer then the Miata. Has anyone sat in one of these and can comment on the room compared to the Miata? I would keep the Miata for a little longer if I bought this car but would then sell it for $3k to my friend. Would I be taking too much of a leap of faith to go from my trusty extremely reliable Miata to a quirky rotary RX7?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Aren't the seals a pricey job on those? I heard something like that. Were they done, or does the price factor in that job?

    I've only driven RX7 coupes, never the convertible. My concern would be all that mass, it might be quicker but is it as fun and tossable?

    -juice
  • Along those same power lines.....I'm starting to consider the Jackson Racing (Eaton) Supercharger, 40 more horses, 40 more ft/lbs of torque. I'd like to have it, but in the end I can't justify the cost, $3000-$3500 by the time all is said and done.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    would simply get me into trouble. I like that fact that you can push the Miata towards its limits and still avoid trouble with the local law enforcement.

    Driving around in a Corvette is fun...but frustrating. You shift into second, hit the gas and low and behold, you have to slow down for the 70 mph zone! Arrghh.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You're right, I can redline 1st and 2nd without even thinking about it. Usually I'll ease off in 3rd.

    But it's nice to wind out the engine like that.

    -juice
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    Well, I went ahead and bought it. I won it on ebay for $3550. The car is 4 hours away so I haven't driven it or seen it in person. It was weird to buy a car this way but the owner seemed pretty honest and answered all my questions. He lowered my bid price after discovering the passenger window needs a new regulator. Other then that, everything appears to work. It seems like a good deal considering how rare the car is (my collectible book lists US sales at 6000, which seems low for 4 years so I dont know how accurate it is, but if it is, woo hoo!). I don't think any engine work has been done but non turbo rotary engines seem to last quite long before needing new apex seals as long as the oil was changed frequently enough. Check out the pics of my new baby and tell me what you think:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1- - &category=6327&item=2459657050&sspagename=STRK%3AMEBW- - A%3AIT
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    They're beauties, IMO.

    IIRC, that's the one that you can use like a targa, or as a full convertible. That was a cool feature.

    She's VERY clean, too. Wow. 108k miles, hard to believe.

    Gotta love a full set of gauges, too.

    -juice
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    Looks nice Ingtonge18. 8k RPM redline...that ought to be fun! :D I hope it all works out for you, the seller sounds like an honest person, but he should've posted some photos with the top down!
  • Nice looking RX-7.

    BTW, I've got the same BBS Honeycomb wheels on my '92 LE. :o)
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    ateixeira: Yep, you are correct! The top has a removeable center piece so you can use it as a targa or drop the top fully. I didn't know it had this feature until I saw it on another RX7 on ebay. I'm slightly concerned this may lead to more leaks but it is a very unique top nonetheless. I love the fact it has a true glass rear window with defroster instead of the non defroster glass on my Miata. The rear glass also looks significantly larger which should help rearward visibility. Oh yeah, the full gauges is definitely nice. I can tell already by the pic that the alternator is strong and oil pressure is good. :)

    Thel: That 8k redline is pretty cool isn't it? The 89-91 convertibles had a high output rotary with more power (160 instead of 147). Torque is 140 instead of 100 in the Miata. So even though the car is heavier, it should have pretty good spunk. The sound of a rotary firing up is definitely unique and their smoothness is untouchable. I can't wait to drive it home on Saturday!

    Thanks guys for all the kind words about my new car. This helps me feel better about making such a frivolous purchase :)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You only live once.

    Do you think, when you're 80, and telling your grandkids about cars you've owned, that you'll regret such a fun purchase?

    I doubt it.

    -juice
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    I wouldn't worry about leaks...of course, I wouldn't have the top up either but.....
  • When I was looking at RX7 (I had a 2-door Mazda 929 Coupe sports car in the Near East when I was on a UN posting, lovely car with twin pop-up head lights and unique alloy wheels plus all the other bells and whistles) on return to Calif. in 1999, it was difficult to find RX7 convertibles with manual shift and mileage below 100K (I was told by an RX7 guru that Mazda rotary engine needs a major overhaul after they cross 100K miles). I found a white manual shift 1991 RX7 with 70K miles at a major dealer. It looked/drove beautifully and the throttle response was instantaneous (like my 1967 Honda "superhawk" CB77 motorbike). However the dealership in Santa Rosa, CA wanted $9000 and I went up to $8000. They would not budge. Later I got hooked on Miatas and got a 1994 "C" leather package/tan top with only 54K miles for $7.5K. Vandals did it in one night when it was parked in the car-port and th epolice were not encouraging at all. So after my insurance replaced everything I reluctantly sold it for the same money I paid after nearly 16 months and 10K miles of use. Later, when I had the use of a closed garage, I won a 1995 "M" Edition Miata on eBay with a hard top, 50K miles for $7K. Unfortunately just 6 months later I lost it on a curve on Hwy 49 that was not well-posted. My insurers were once again extremely nice and compensated me generously enough for me to get a 1999 10th anniversary (6-speed) Miata which I now have and love. It also has a hard top and 72K miles. And yes it does exactly 60 mph at 3000 RPM in 6th. I got a very bad catch in my back trying to get at the lever (inside the arm rest) that flips the trunk and gas cap open (I am shocked at this very bad design by Mazda). Now I get out of the car first bend down and then work these two levers, if I must.

    To answer your Qs. The RX7, in my opinion, is larger and more comfortable than a Miata. The rotary engine revs freely and you will just enjoy tweaking the throttle like a GP racer and impress your gf/neigbors if you get the manual shift. (I cannot understand people who get an automatic Miata, RX7 or a Porsche Boxter!!) Yes, the rotary may require more visits to the mechanic than the Miata (none of my Miatas needed anything more than the normal oil and filter change). You will also need a mechanic who SPECIALIZES in RX7s. Your ordinary "Japanese Cars Garage" will ruin your RX7. If I lose my current Miata I will look out for a low mileage 1990 or 1991 RX7 convertible..... BTW my 1995 "M" Miata had BBS wheels. I did not particularly like them....they are difficult to keep clean.
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