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Mazda Japan enters the MX-5 Miata restoration business

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From its 1989 debut through its 1997 end of production, Mazda built over 400,000 first-generation (NA, in Mazda-speak) MX-5 Miatas. Japan, where the model is known as the Eunos Roadster (or simply Roadster), accounted for sales of around 120,000 NA Miatas, and of these, roughly 23,000 are still on the road. Thanks to the efforts of passionate owners, Mazda Motors Corporation in Japan will soon begin a restoration program for NA Miatas, and is also lobbying suppliers to put a variety of OEM parts back into production.

Mazda MX-5 Roadster

As Japanese Nostalgic Car reports, the OEM spares available initially will include the Bridgestone SF-325 tires in the stock 185/60R14 size, the Nardi wooden steering wheel and gearshift knob, and the original vinyl soft top. Other announcements on parts availability are expected to come before the program officially kicks off in early 2018, though it isn’t clear if these items will be available to export customers.

Mazda MX-5 Roadster

As for restorations, Mazda is setting up a dedicated facility that will be certified by TÜV Rheinland Japan Company, Limited. Owners will meet with Mazda specialists to determine the extent of work needed –  be it cosmetic, mechanical, or both – and the process will return a “car in a state close to the original,” in Mazda’s own (translated) words. A trial restoration of the Classic Red Roadster pictured here has already been carried out to ensure that targeted quality standards could be met, and Mazda will begin accepting cars from Japanese customers later in 2017.

Mazda MX-5 Roadster

For the time being, the program applies only to the NA Miata, and there’s no indication that Mazda North America will follow-up with a similar program for customers on these shores. No mention of restoration time or cost was made in Mazda’s press release, since the work to be performed will vary on a case-by-case basis. This differs from other factory-backed restoration programs such as Jaguar Land Rover Classic, which also give customers the option to purchase a factory-rebuilt “new” vehicle, with a commensurate price tag.

Mazda MX-5 Roadster

Mazda is calling this the “Roadster Restore Service,” and its mission statement reads as follows:

Through Mazda’s restore service and parts supply of NA Roadster,
We will challenge cultivation of car culture with those who love cars without stopping.

Through these efforts,
We aim to become a brand that keeps a special bond with customers.

Also, by continuing to supply genuine parts,
Faced seriously with everyone who loves Roadster,
It continues to be a partner who can “run together and rejoice together.”