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Feedyurhed
Feedyurhed UltraDork
11/27/22 7:09 a.m.
lnlogauge said:

In reply to ShawnG:

Part of the reason Miata's have such a following is because they are really well made, simple, and reliable.  A rotary may be simple, but it's definitely not well made, and sure as hell isn't reliable.  

Truer words were never spoken. I have a Miata and a RX7. If Mazda had put a rotary in the Miata, it too would have been discontinued years ago.

 

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
11/27/22 8:03 a.m.

In reply to Feedyurhed :

Depends.  If they used an early RX-7's 12A, the engine would run 200-300k miles. If they used an FD or RX-8 engine, obviously not.

Mazda saw fit to engineer the Miata with a piston engine that very closely approximates the 12A from a '79 RX-7, along with the interior layout and feel.  Just don't mention the crank keyway smiley

NickD
NickD MegaDork
11/27/22 8:24 a.m.

The funny thing about Miatas and rotaries is that a lot of people who aren't intimately familiar with Miatas seem to believe that Miatas came from the factory with rotaries.

When I was taking a BP-4W out of a '99 Miata at a junkyard, some guys came over and were like "Oh, you're grabbing the rotary out of this? We kinda wanted it." Uhhh, not a rotary, just a 1.8L 4-cylinder. Sorry to disappoint.

I took a spectator for a ride in my Miata at an autocross and afterwards he went "I guess I'll stop giving my friends a hard time over liking rotaries." I went "Huh?" and he said "Oh, my friends like rotaries but I always thought they were dumb. This thing changed my mind." I told him it wasn't a rotary, and he then went "Oh, you swapped it out?"

Also, a lot of people tend to assume Miatas are FWD as well.

buzzboy
buzzboy SuperDork
11/27/22 8:49 a.m.
Fr3AkAzOiD said:

VTec classic Mini Coopers.   (https://www.superfastminis.com/)

I was left considerably more than cold after their shoddy workmanship destroyed my friend's car, almost killed us, and left me with clicky crunchy neck.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
11/27/22 8:50 a.m.

In reply to NickD :

I remember a story from the early 90s.... the salient points were a Miata that needed a tow, a tow truck driver that thought it was front wheel drive, and a transmission left in first gear.

It was ugly.

rustomatic
rustomatic HalfDork
11/27/22 9:39 a.m.
NickD said:

The funny thing about Miatas and rotaries is that a lot of people who aren't intimately familiar with Miatas seem to believe that Miatas came from the factory with rotaries.

When I was taking a BP-4W out of a '99 Miata at a junkyard, some guys came over and were like "Oh, you're grabbing the rotary out of this? We kinda wanted it." Uhhh, not a rotary, just a 1.8L 4-cylinder. Sorry to disappoint.

I took a spectator for a ride in my Miata at an autocross and afterwards he went "I guess I'll stop giving my friends a hard time over liking rotaries." I went "Huh?" and he said "Oh, my friends like rotaries but I always thought they were dumb. This thing changed my mind." I told him it wasn't a rotary, and he then went "Oh, you swapped it out?"

Also, a lot of people tend to assume Miatas are FWD as well.

This is the best illustration of misinformation I've seen in some time--good work!  

Feedyurhed
Feedyurhed UltraDork
11/27/22 9:43 a.m.
Pete. (l33t FS) said:

In reply to Feedyurhed :

Depends.  If they used an early RX-7's 12A, the engine would run 200-300k miles. If they used an FD or RX-8 engine, obviously not.

Mazda saw fit to engineer the Miata with a piston engine that very closely approximates the 12A from a '79 RX-7, along with the interior layout and feel.  Just don't mention the crank keyway smiley

Hi Pete, and I agree. I personally like rotaries but they are finicky and that's the problem. People expect them to be like a Toyota Corolla and drive the hell out of them and never check the oil etc. I have an 86 RX7 which has the weird cold start/flood condition where you have to pull a plug and go through a certain process to get it going again. Honestly I can't remember the whole process as I am always careful to get it warmed up before shutting it off. I keep a paper in the glove box listing the procedure in case I need it which I got from the rotary forums.  I had an 87 RX7 before the 86 and never had that problem. The Miata is simple, honest and reliable.  Love them both. 

j_tso
j_tso HalfDork
11/27/22 10:16 a.m.

Sorry to continue making this a Miata thread, but I don't see why the MX-5 has to only have a rotary or not.

As pointed out above if Porsche can make the "same car" in many different configurations I don't see why Mazda can't do the same. They'd get more bang out of the platform they've invested in.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
11/27/22 10:52 a.m.

In reply to LanEvo :

That's funny cause I feel the same way about E30 M3's.   They look cool but driving one is very meh.  Especially up at altitude, where the small amount of power they have takes a 20% hair cut.  I've owned 2 E36 M3's and 1 E46 M3, they were *far* better street cars compared to the E30 M3.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
11/27/22 11:07 a.m.
j_tso said:

Sorry to continue making this a Miata thread, but I don't see why the MX-5 has to only have a rotary or not.

As pointed out above if Porsche can make the "same car" in many different configurations I don't see why Mazda can't do the same. They'd get more bang out of the platform they've invested in.

It would have been especially easy on the NC platform, due to the shared RX-8 DNA.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
11/27/22 11:16 a.m.

Chalk me up as another one for the S2000. The 9000rpm screen of an engine is impressive and thrilling on paper but is kind of frustrating in the real world. If you can't keep it on a boil, it's kind of a dog. 

I got to take a friend's very competitive and masterfully-modified STR-coass AP1 for a pair of fun runs, and while I liked the chassis, the engine was a letdown, and his was tuned and setup to try and eke out more torque and make the VTEC crossover earlier. If you didn't drive it perfectly though, it bogged and fell on it's face out of corners. I did like the chassis though, very fun and easy to finesse. 

At the same time, he drove my Rotrex-blown Miata and afterwards we compared notes. He pointed out that there was something not right with the chassis tuning on my car (turned out to be too small a front sway bar and half the spring rate it really needed) but he said "My car feels like it has no power compared to this thing". The funny part was that our horsepower and torque numbers at the wheels were near identical but with very different curves (and the Rotrex blower isn't really doing much at low RPM either)

 

CrustyRedXpress
CrustyRedXpress Dork
11/27/22 11:17 a.m.
Tom1200 said:

In reply to Byrneon27 :

The styling leaves me cold but having driven a couple of NSXs the driving experience is pretty awesome. Note I've only ever driven them on track.

The NSX had styling issues half way though the design phase. Old man Honda wanted the engine changed to a DOHC w/vtec and they had to lengthen the rear by something like 2". 

They're boring on the street, somewhat by design. The gearing is just really tall and lots of work went into things like reducing NHV.

When it was launched everybody was impressed that low-speed driving was equivalent to an Accord. But it's 2022 and who wants to drive a early 90's Accord every day? 

LanEvo
LanEvo Dork
11/27/22 12:04 p.m.
docwyte said:

In reply to LanEvo :

That's funny cause I feel the same way about E30 M3's.   They look cool but driving one is very meh.  Especially up at altitude, where the small amount of power they have takes a 20% hair cut.  I've owned 2 E36 M3's and 1 E46 M3, they were *far* better street cars compared to the E30 M3.

Like I said, the E36 is undoubtedly a better car (especially on the street). Having owned, driven (street & track), and raced a few examples of each, I keep coming back to the E30. They're just more thrilling to drive as far as I'm concerned. The on-limit handling is a lot more exciting to me. I just find them more fun ... and infinitely cooler.

I've also got a 190E 2.3-16 racecar, which is pretty similar to the E30 M3. I guess I just love cars like this for whatever reason. No logic to it.

EDITED TO ADD: Trying to be objective about it for a second. Until pretty recently, S14-powered E30 M3s driven by friends of mine (e.g., Ron Checca, Eric Heinrich) were still vying for overall wins in BMW CCA Club Racing against dozens of built E36- and E46-platform cars. So, I guess they can't be all that bad.

Tom1200
Tom1200 UberDork
11/27/22 2:08 p.m.
codrus (Forum Supporter) said:
Tom1200 said:

This is why I struggle, between this car and several laps in  Formula Super Vee, if I'm spending anything over 25K for a track car it's going to be a single seater every time.

One of these days I'm going to find some other single-seaters to try, but so far the only one I've driven is a Spec Racer Ford.  Blech, no thanks.

 

That car in the picture was 20 seconds a lap faster than an SRF. Spec Racer Ford is a great class but they are the Spec Miata of single seaters; lots of great racing but by no means fast.

Tom1200
Tom1200 UberDork
11/27/22 2:21 p.m.

In reply to LanEvo :

While I've not driven the E30 M3, I've driven the normal E30s and like then a lot.

As for the E36 M3 the first time I drive one I was shocked by how easy it was to hang the car out.

Tom1200
Tom1200 UberDork
11/27/22 2:24 p.m.
CrustyRedXpress said:

When it was launched everybody was impressed that low-speed driving was equivalent to an Accord. But it's 2022 and who wants to drive a early 90's Accord every day? 

Me, 90s cars still have a vintage feel but have most of the modern creature comforts.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
11/27/22 2:41 p.m.

In reply to Tom1200 :

I still think the '86-89 Accords were the pinnacle of Hondaness.  The way the interiors and switchgear looked and felt, the weird way the overassisted steering would self turn when reversing, everything.

I made a mint replacing springs and upper control arms on both ends of them, too...

Teh E36 M3
Teh E36 M3 UltraDork
11/27/22 3:06 p.m.
buzzboy said:
Fr3AkAzOiD said:

VTec classic Mini Coopers.   (https://www.superfastminis.com/)

I was left considerably more than cold after their shoddy workmanship destroyed my friend's car, almost killed us, and left me with clicky crunchy neck.

F. I hope it was just the implementation, as I'm building a d16 mini but not with their kit. Haha. 

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
11/27/22 4:03 p.m.
Tom1200 said:
codrus (Forum Supporter) said:
Tom1200 said:

This is why I struggle, between this car and several laps in  Formula Super Vee, if I'm spending anything over 25K for a track car it's going to be a single seater every time.

One of these days I'm going to find some other single-seaters to try, but so far the only one I've driven is a Spec Racer Ford.  Blech, no thanks.

 

That car in the picture was 20 seconds a lap faster than an SRF. Spec Racer Ford is a great class but they are the Spec Miata of single seaters; lots of great racing but by no means fast.

It wasn't just that it was slow, everything was sloppy about it and all the controls were badly placed.  Heel and toe was nearly impossible due to pedal positioning.

 

LanEvo
LanEvo Dork
11/27/22 4:27 p.m.
Tom1200 said: As for the E36 M3 the first time I drive one I was shocked by how easy it was to hang the car out.

It's true: the E36 and especially E46 M3s are a dream to slide around in. The E30 M3 doesn't have enough power to really hoon, plus the primitive rear suspension makes them a bit twitchy at the limit. They have a nice balance, but you have to be tidy with your inputs.

Tom1200 said: Me, 90s cars still have a vintage feel but have most of the modern creature comforts.

Totally agree! For me, late-'80s and early-'90s sportscars hit the sweet-spot of technology:

  • Functional ABS, but no traction or stability control to interfere with your inputs.
  • Power locks/windows and functional HVAC, but no other (unnecessary) amenities.
  • EFI that starts and runs the car reliably, without limp-home modes or other nonsense.
  • Light enough to feel limber on track, but without the wet noodle feeling of an old British Roadster.
Tom1200
Tom1200 UberDork
11/27/22 5:24 p.m.

In reply to LanEvo :

Nailed it; this is exactly why a like them. I'd add they also are first cars with decent brakes stock.

Olemiss540
Olemiss540 HalfDork
11/27/22 5:50 p.m.

Awesome cars that leave you cold? Any car I (or the owner) can't take on track. Otherwise it's just a C&C showpiece and wtf good is that IMO.

On the other hand, many completely mundane cars have left me hot and soggy just pushing its limits.

ShawnG
ShawnG MegaDork
11/27/22 5:55 p.m.

The F40 is ugly. 

The Dino is stupid. Who wants to explain to every non-car idiot why their Ferrari has a V6.

There. I said it.

buzzboy
buzzboy SuperDork
11/27/22 7:22 p.m.
NickD said:

The funny part was that our horsepower and torque numbers at the wheels were near identical but with very different curves (and the Rotrex blower isn't really doing much at low RPM either)

My BMW and an AP1 weigh almost identical(within the weight of a passenger). My friend's AP1 and my BMW put down within 1hp of each other on back to back dyno runs. The 70 fewer ft*lbs is really noticeable. Longer gears with more torque seems faster to me than shorter gears with less torque, even at the same horsepower. 

759NRNG
759NRNG PowerDork
11/27/22 7:36 p.m.

Considering the origin of the format......miatas meh ....currently and say what y'all will, but my new favorite classic awesome  car is a 1965 L78 corvette. 396 bigbock/factory 4whl discbrakes.....oh and exotics 1984-1996 Ferrari testarossa  all day long....  

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