Bought my "97 in 2006. Have had more fun than I thought possible driving this car. Call it my "GrannyMobile."
I use non-ethanol gas and get 32-38 mpg. It is my everyday car. Over 200,000 m and still going strong. I will probably keep 'her' until she goes to Mazda heaven. Had professional rollbars installed, gives her more solidity.
Uses about 1/2 quart oil monthly, my mechanic can't find out where it is going.
Chk. it weekly.
Add an airscoop and a windblocker to the windshield, (when the top is down), and it keeps the low floor transm. heat out and my hat on.
My granddaughters just love to ride with 'Granny' with the top down.
Luv it! Luv it!!!!
Ease of manually putting the top up and down.
Longer lasting, better paint. (original)
Better locks on the top. I have had them release and the top 'blow' down when doing over 50mph.
These locks are 20 yrs old, think I might need new ones?
Where do I find them??
Owned for a bit over two years and love the car. Outstanding reliability. Finely balanced ride/handling trade off. You feel the road, but it's not punishing. A bit on the noisy side even with the hardtop. Without the hardtop, visibility is so-so to the right and left rear. The hardtop also significantly stiffens the structure. As a result, I leave mine on all of the time. The engine is adequate from a power standpoint, and is responsive to throttle inputs, revving quickly. The stock exhaust strikes a perfect balance of tone and sound level- it's an audio delight. Shift action is excellent although if not careful, a rushed 2-3 shift may bypass 3rd and snick into 5th. Excellent car.
Balance between ride and handling. Comfortable interior although not large Outstanding reliability and very low maintenance. Parts readily available and reasonably priced. Adequate acceleration. Light weight.
Could benefit from another 30 hp. Power windows too slow. Mount the spare tire under the trunk to free up space. Seats could use more side support. Slightly larger sway bars would be nice Increased chassis stiffness.
Had a 1967 MGB and never thought I could match the experience. My 1997 "M" Edition blows away the "B". I am the original owner and only driver of my "M". Still today stopped at a traffic light people roll down their window and say what a beautiful car. The driving experience at sundown or at night with the top down and the pipes purring is indescribable if you haven't experienced it. This is absolutely the most fun car to drive in the whole world. All the other two-seaters are "phonies" with their too-much power and comfort features. Yes the "B" was a classic never to be replaced, until the Miata, especially the last of the original breed, the 1997 "M" Edition.
The leather and wheels are the best of any car on the road. The sound of the exhaust is perfect. Eight speakers in the sound system is like a symphony. Every part on my "M" is still the original equipment - in perfect condition. The short-throw on the shifter is so firm and exact!!
More leg room - especially passenger side, my wife and I are both 6" tall and could use about 4 more inches of space. Otherwise don't change a thing!!!
This is the most fun-to-drive car that I've ever had the pleasure of driving. Not especially fast, but the chassis dynamics are an excellent compromise between comfort and control. The stock exhaust provides an aural symphony as you run through the gears. To maximize acceleration, you'll need to spin it >4k rpm. Shifting is a "snick-snick" proposition with short, precise throws. Don't expect a limo ride, but it's far from punishing. Handling is excellent - balanced, with moderate roll and good feel through the wheel. Trunk space is limited; it could use a 6th gear; rear-side visibility is limited with the top up; and the car is not quiet. These are the demerits.
Handling balance, engine sounds, shifting feel. Overall, this is an exceptional drivers car.
Stiffer chassis (but <20# weight), slightly firmer roll bars, and add 20 more each hp & torque.
I got this car last year, Iíve always
wanted it, and itís even more than what
Itís the most fun Iíve ever had while
driving and it's a decent performer
too. 8.x sec 0-60 not bad.
One of the best things is that there
are tons of aftermarket parts.
Handling, rear wheel drive, slip diff.
(M) you can get a bunch of aftermarket
parts and even get to choose where to
get it from.
The only thing I don't love is the
noise with the top up, but to fix it
jut keep it down all the time;)