Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5

| 26 Oct 2018
Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5

This is the first in-house restoration of a Mk1 Mazda MX-5.

Known as the Mazda MX-5 Miata in North America and the Eunos Roadster or Mazda Roadster in Japan, the first, NA-generation model made its debut in 1989 and set the benchmark for affordable, two-seat, front mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive roadsters.

And with the earliest models reaching their 30th birthday next year, the manufacturer is answering the call from owners in its home market to bring their cars back to best – and the first has just been completed.

Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5
Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5
Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5
Mazda still produces genuine parts for the Mk1 MX-5

Of course, Mazda isn't the first manufacturer to launch a service restoring models to as-new condition.

Porsche, Jaguar and Aston Martin are among the many other marques to do likewise – indeed, just this week, Alfa Romeo launched a pair of classic car programmes.

And while the MX-5 might not have the prestige status of models from those brands, its large customer base is sure to keep the manufacturer busy, especially as these are cars that enthusiast owners want to keep on enjoying.

This restoration service, launched last December, takes place at Mazda's Hiroshima factory and the team is certainly not doing things by halves.

At the project's conception back in November 2015, the maker liaised with Mk1 specialists, suppliers and the Roadster Club of Japan to ensure it did the model justice.

Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5
Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5
Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5
The idea for the programme came about almost three years ago

The first car to emerge as part of this scheme underwent a comprehensive, two-month, bare-metal restoration, including a rebuilt engine, a refurbished chassis and a retrimmed cabin.

All work is recorded in a book presented to the owner with his or her freshly restored roadster, but first, every car is driven by Roadster Ambassador, Nobuhiro Yamamoto, to verify that it's up to the manufacturer's exacting standards.

Due to the bespoke nature of such a project, no pricing has been announced.

Classic & Sports Car – Mazda reveals the first factory-restored MX-5
The first of surely many restored examples of this much-loved modern classic

"We have been attending fan meetings for years and listening to our customers," said Yamamoto.

"Our motto was to build ‘A car that makes everybody happy’. And this was the defining characteristic of the Mk1 roadster when it was born in 1989. We are so proud that to this day people still seem happier having it in their lives, treating it almost like a member of the family.”

Will this service be offered to British owners? Unless you can ship your car to Hiroshima, probably not yet, due to Mazda not having any production facilities here.

But such is the love enthusiasts feel for their MX-5s, you can't help but wonder if there would be demand for factory-approved restoration in the UK.


If you're now in the mood for a Mk1 MX-5 take a look at the models on our cars for sale pages

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