Introduced on these shores in 1989, as a 1990 model, the Mazda Miata marked the return of the classic British roadster, albeit one manufactured half a world away, in Hiroshima, Japan. Offering a unique blend of handling, reliability, affordability, and jinba ittai (Japanese for “horse and rider as one”) the Miata has become a favorite weekend driver, race car and track-day toy for legions of fans around the world.
Now, as Japanese Nostalgic Car points out, there’s yet another reason for Americans to buy a first-generation (NA, in Mazda-speak, built between 1990-’97) Mazda Miata: Following the success of its programs in Japan, Mazda is increasing the number of NA restoration parts available through U.S. dealerships.
The list of available replacement parts is already an extensive one, and NA Miata owners previously could order everything from a complete exhaust system to a replacement speedometer (or even a stock tool kit) before the program was expanded. Now, the catalog of dealer-sourced parts includes a replacement fabric soft top (or roll-up plastic window), top boot, brake calipers, seven-spoke wheel (even lighter than the original, with a more durable finish), and scores of more fasteners and associated hardware.
Mazda didn’t compile the list on its own, but instead consulted with specialty shops and Miata clubs to determine which parts were needed. Of the expanded program, Masahiro Moro, chairman and CEO of Mazda North American Operations, said,
There is a pure feeling of joy when it comes to driving a Miata, of any generation… By helping prolong the life of MX-5 Miata NA models, Mazda in committed to supporting the roadster culture and looks foreward to seeing these historic vehicles on the road – and on the track – for years to come.
The complete list, found here, runs 42 pages and contains over 1,100 items. There’s no word on when (or whether) the program will be expanded to include NB Miatas (built from 1999-’05) or NC Miatas (built from 2006-’15), or whether Mazda’s Roadster Restore program, which offers comprehensive restorations of first-generation models, will make it to North America.
We’ve already said there’s no time like the present to buy an NA Miata, and the deeper well of restoration parts available from Mazda only strengthens this argument. As supplies of unaltered originals dwindle, expect prices on these future classics to go nowhere but up.