A '60's Lotus Elan. See any similarities? This is an English Miata. Only slower, poorly built, and hard to find. Great car for it's time, but the lowliest Miata car can clean her clock. Grandpa! I love you.
WHY THE MIATA IS SUCH A GREAT CAR
Many people dismiss the Miata as a cute �chick car�. In fact, it is a purpose built sports car with performance limits far beyond any other cars under $30,000. Sure, there are much faster cars under 30k in a drag race, but none are the equal on a road or autocross course. A properly modified Miata is the equal or better of much more expensive performance cars, given the purity of it�s basic design. This is the top ten reasons why.
1.)Curb Weight: weight is the enemy of speed. In acceleration, braking, and handling, less weight is key. Stock Miatas weigh about the same or a few hundred pounds more than many purpose built, full bodied race cars.
2.)Rear Wheel Drive: From Formula 1 to Top Fuel, RWD is the layout of choice for high performance. BMW, Porsche, Mercedes, Ferrari, Lamborghini, ETC, are all RWD.
3.)Four Wheel independent double wishbone suspension with coil-over shocks: The suspension of choice for all purpose built road race cars and exotic sports cars. �Nuff said. Front & rear sway bars are another plus.
4.)Four Wheel disk brakes: While these are increasingly common, look at the size of the Miata brakes relative to the weight of the car. I noticed a Mercedes MLK sport-ute the other day. Had brakes about the size of the Miata. Weighs almost twice as much. Many Miata racers use the stock brakes. They are that good.
5.)Limited Slip differential: Many Miatas have this feature. Something no serious road or drag racer would be without.
6.)Low unsprung weight: Crucial to handling and acceleration, light wheels, tires and suspension components are the reason you don�t see fast Miatas with large and heavy wheels and tires. Sure they look cool, but they are NOT the FAST setup.
7.)Race Bred Engine: The Miata engine is an understressed version of the turbocharged 323 GXS rally car homoligation special that came stock with 8lbs of boost. DOHC 4 valve engine that will pull strongly to a 7K redline and stay there all day. Indestructable normally aspirated. Because this engine was designed for forced induction, it will eat boost like a pie. FI makes this a whole new car, without the fuel hassles associated with boosting econo-boxes.
8.)50/50 Weight Distribution: Engineering tricks such as an aluminium hood, rear-set engine, passenger side mounted trunk mounted battery and spare tire are part of the engineering plan to create a balanced sports car.
9.)PPF �Power Plant Frame�: This is a truss that connects the transmission to the differential. A rigid connection next to the drive shaft that is familiar to Ferrari and Corvette drivers, in that it reduces drivetrain lash to make on-power to off-power transition much more stable and smooth. Not the kind of thing a corporate bean counter would approve of for a mass production car.
10.)The �Chick Car� factor and modest horsepower. Insurance companies are blind to the performance of this car. Young would-be studs ignore it & buy Civics. Miatas don�t get stolen, wrecked, and bought for big bucks like more popular cars. Makes them cheap to buy, insure, and maintain. Yet, there is a huge aftermarket and lots of knowledge available to make absolute weapons out of these cars. The perfect �Q-Car�.