1997 Mazda MX-5 Miata Long Term Road Test

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1997 Mazda MX-5 Miata: Glass versus Plastic

December 09, 2010

1997 Mazda MX-5 Miata: Glass versus Plastic

A common gripe for first-generation (1990 to 1997) Miatas (and many other older convertibles for that matter) is the plastic rear window. These tend to get yellowed and/or scratched up in time, reducing rearward visibility and in the process making one's Miata look like an aspiring hooptie. The upside of the flexible window is that it allows one to quickly drop the top -- just unfasten the header latches and flip the top back. 

Our '97 has a replacement top and the former owner opted for a glass rear window. The downside is that when you go to lower the top you must first unzip the rear window (glass doesn't like to fold) to allow it to drop down flat and then you flip the latches and flip the top down. If I were replacing the top on my own first-gen Miata, I'd gladly take the trade-off to get a perfectly transparent back window that won't eventually look like a cat mistook it for a scratching post or a dog mistook it for a tree.

And how are things going on the Miata's modification front you may ask?  Pretty darn good. Stay tuned as an update is forthcoming.

John DiPietro, Automotive Editor @ 127,250 miles

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