The car I found was being sold by a college student who needed the money for school, but obviously she enjoyed the little guy. It has a few upgrades already including a Mishimoto aluminum radiator and a Sparco suede-covered steering wheel. Overall, it's a relatively low mile (130k), relatively clean (a few minor bumps & bruises), rust free '93, last of the 1.6L Miatas in the US. DT's Editor-in-Chief Vince has not so subtly tried to convince me to get an M Roadster instead of an NA, but I already have two needy BMWs under my care - and wanted a low-fuss solution for getting out on our local tracks.
The engine bay needs a healthy cleaning but everything looks in order with some fresh maintenance parts and no leaks. The inner fenders have no signs of crumpling at all - unlike my last car, even prior to the killer accident. It idles smooth and pulls cleanly, like a rev-happy Mazda B engine should. The seller even smogged the car last month (!) which makes it the first in a long line of vehicles I've bought that fall into the category in a while, even though California private sellers are legally obligated to get the car through emissions testing successfully (most aren't aware of that requirement, it seems).
I wasn't looking for a black & tan car, which are somewhat rare to find in good shape, but I can't complain about the color combo. The Black & Tan (capitalized) edition was '92 only; in '93 the color combo was an option when the highest trim level was selected. The leather driver's seat has been thrashed harder than one of Kirk Hammett's ESP KH guitars, but it is strangely more comfortable than the decent cloth seat in the last car. I like the aesthetic in here especially with the Sparco wheel. Seats will be changed out for something that can accept 5-point harnesses, so no worries there. I felt a bit of shimmy at highway speed from the wheels & tires, but the Falken Azenis RT615K and cheap light 15 x 6.5" wheels from El Cheapacabra survived that accident and will be going onto this car along with the Racing Beat stainless exhaust I scored on CL.
CFlo is Daily Turismo's co-founder and Technical Editor. When he's not driving an "emissions spewing" TDI he's underneath a Volvo, on top of a Land Cruiser, cursing at a broken BMW, or driving the piss out of a crapcan race car. And that's all before 10AM.