From MGB to Miata
In 1989, a drought ended. This drought involved the two-seater sports coupe. In 1980, the last MG MGB was made and in the 1989, the first Mazda Miata was sold. When looking at the MG MGB of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, it is easy to see the influence that the ground-breaking sports car had on the Mazda classic.
Frustration Became Brilliance
The Mazda Miata was born more from frustration than anything else. In the final years of the MG MGB, owners complained about the reliability of the British automobiles, especially when referring to the constant electrical problems. The British two-seaters were still loved by many, but the quality of the product diminished significantly before the lights went out completely in 1980. The idea that a two-seater sports car could make money was no longer in the minds of the Brits. But, it was in the mind of Bob Hall, who was a journalist for Motor Trend.
From Visionary to Developer
A few years before the last MGB came off of the assembly line, Mr. Hall spoke to the executives at Mazda about designing a two-seater sportscar that did not have the same problems that the British and European models had. He was relentless in his vision and five years later he became an employee of Mazda as he worked on developing the car that has now been in production for 25 years.
Price and Quality Differences
The MG MGB in 1962 cost about $3,000 and came with four fuses, headlights that flickered, and black interior. The 1989 Mazda Miata was slightly less than $14,000 and had a true stick shift, a lightweight manual convertible, and cute pop-up headlights. While MGB owners complained about needing their very own mechanic, Miata owners just needed the regular oil changes to get where they wanted to go.
One for the Ages
Fans of the two-seater sports car have plenty of options. Those who love the look of the classic British look can still find the MGB despite the fact that some are already 50 years old! However, enthusiasts who want an even better ride, a more attractive design, and more reliability can easily find a first generation Miata for a lower price than the 50 year old British version. It is hard to go wrong with one of the greatest cars ever made – the Mazda Miata!