Mazda MX-5 vs Four "Basic Sports Cars" of 1968

In the January 2017 issue we compared the Mazda MX-5 against four classics that were pitted against each other in a 1970 Road & Track story: Fiat 124 Spider, MGB, Porsche 914 and Triumph TR6. Road & Track’s October 1968 issue featured a four-car face-off for “basic sports cars,” so let’s again see how the popular Mazda compares.

Join Free Join our community to easily find more Austin-Healey, Datsun, Fiat, Mazda, Triumph, tech, Mazda MX-5 and New vs. Old articles.
More like this
Comments
ClearwaterZ
ClearwaterZ New Reader
2/20/20 1:18 p.m.

Interesting that you give the MX-5 a DOHC 2.0L engine - but don't compare it to a Datsun 2000 with a 2.0L OHC engine from 1968.  That would reduce the Pounds Per Horsepower for the Datsun from 25.5 to a far more compeitive 16 lbs per hp with the 130HP U20, or 13.9 with the U20 rated at 150HP. (vs 15 for the MX-5).  Retail Price in inflation adjusted USD's should also be a column.

mrichlen
mrichlen New Reader
2/21/20 11:58 a.m.

I agree, better comparison. 

wdbricke
wdbricke
2/21/20 2:34 p.m.

An even better comparison is to the first NA Miata, with the 1600 engine withour VVT. These values are at or below the older cars, and include driver airbags (I know, I tested one head-on with a pickup and walked away; likely would be sitting here dead in the older cars.)

Be careful comparing the very small JIN gross horses (ponys?) to modern net Horse power; I owned a 1990 Miata and test drove a Datsun 2000, memory has them very similar, with a little more torgue for the Datsun (not bought due to common 2nd gear synchro gone).

Another net aid to people considering their first restoration, it would be neat to compare a common pile of parts (brake rotors, clutch, valves) from popular catalogues for each vehicle. It could save some "buyer's remorse". 

wspohn
wspohn Dork
2/22/20 12:29 p.m.

Misleading for you to compare cars quoting gross power for all the others and net for the Miata.  The Mazda would look even better if it was a level playing field.  (The Mazda would equate to a bit over 180 bhp gross).

sir_mike
sir_mike New Reader
2/23/20 6:34 p.m.

Totally different era....no way a fair comparison....would rather have any of the four instead of the Miata....especially the first Miata that looked like an Elan copy.

You'll need to log in to post.

Our Preferred Partners
6XObRMmjx16hyOWfwCxZ6kyWI43TLOTg5nmI5tMFDJpAxQqROcERUNJXB29ZLkEv