1994 Mazda MX-5 Miata Long-Term Road Test

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1994 Mazda MX-5 Miata: Hand Wash

April 28, 2010

1994_miata_handwash.jpg

Here's a little slice of our 1994 Mazda MX-5 project car's life. There are a couple tears in its vinyl soft top that keep it from being perfectly watertight, so it can't go on the tracks at our normal car wash. But a $50 detail isn't really my speed when I'm driving this car. So instead it's $2.50 in quarters at the self-serve wash. Actually, it was $5 this time, because I got timed out when I paused from scrubbing to take a photo.

The tears in the top really aren't as big a deal as you might think. With the top up, the noise level is still bearable on the freeway -- even with the wind leaks. I guess it's because there's not a huge amount of motor making a racket, nor do you have gargantuan tires pounding against the pavement.

More importantly, on this occasion, I successfully washed the car without water leaking into the cockpit. It did get a bit musty smelling, but I think that was from my wet shoes on the old carpet. And within a couple hours, the cockpit reverted to its usual old library stacks odor.

Erin Riches, Senior Editor @ 175,144 miles

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