Since 1990, the mazda miata has been the affordable roadster of choice for enthusiasts the key word here being affordable and with over 1 million of these built and produced across the globe, nearly a half a million sold in america alone. This week, mazda has loaned me a 2021 model and, as opposed to my usual review, i thought i'd do something a little different, because i want to know what makes the miata so successful whenever every time someone asks me what kind of sports car should i get? The answer is always miata, so in today's video we're going to find out exactly why that is hey guys. I want to interrupt this review for a brief announcement and a special shout out to the sponsor of this video honey. No, not my honey or your honey. I'M, talking about a smart shopping assistant, app that automatically monitors all your favorite shopping sites and keeps you informed of all the newest sales that are happening every day. Once you have honey integrated into your life, whenever you're shopping online, it automatically searches for coupon codes and automatically applies the biggest discount. You can find instantly to your shopping cart. For me, honey works on tons of my personal favorite shopping sites instantly saving money anytime. I need to shop for any everyday items. For example, i am the proud cat dad to this little stinker right here louie. I adopted him four years ago when he was nine years old and i'm constantly using honey to shop for any of his specialty cat food and medication, and it's so well integrated into my life that i barely even have to think about it.
Whenever i'm shopping. For this little stinker and that's the best part about this app is it works so seamlessly that i don't even have to think about it, and the app just instantly saves me money, anytime, i'm, going shopping so, if you're ready to join the millions of users already Using honey and saving money be sure to visit www.joinhoney.com forward, slash redline, where on average, some users basically say that the app saves them around 18 on average anytime. They go and make an online purchase, and now let's get back to the video. So to answer that question, i want to briefly talk about the history of this sports card. Now i keep saying sports car and there are some of you haters out there. That will always say: oh the miata's, not a sports car, it doesn't have enough horsepower and torque it's not fast enough to be a sports car. Well, you couldn't be more wrong because the miata's always excelled at being an entry level sports car, a great beginner sports car, because you can easily induce tail out oversteer, so effortlessly and it's so controllable. Because of this car's very neutral chassis it's got an incredible near 50 5050 weight distribution. The basic formula of this car has not changed over the last 30 years and mazda, of course, continues to improve it. Over the years, the n, a generation miata, came out back in 1990, and this is the one that enthusiasts basically like to turn into a street legal race car.
You basically buy one for super cheap and you build it to the exact specifications and tuning capabilities that you want it's, the one that, of course, has been characterized by the pop up headlights, and this is the car that was launched with a 1.6 liter four cylinder. That made around 116 horsepower now, of course, in 1994 mazda updated that engine and replaced it with the 1.8 liter engine that made around 126 horsepower that's the engine that most enthusiasts tend to tune. That generation, of course ran up until 1997, so from 94 to 97. That'S, the miata that a lot of enthusiasts bought and turned into race cars it's the one that you basically start your racing career in because it's such a tractable tunable, forgiving sports car that's, super lightweight. Remember this car launched in 1990 weighing around 2000 pounds. It was one of the lightest cars that you could buy think of it again as the british sports car, but built by the japanese to be reliable, durable and just built with incredible build quality, as opposed to those british roadsters. Now, in 1999, of course, mazda came out with the nd generation miata, and this is the generation that i really liked when i was a kid because it offered the first ever mass to speed version of the car. Of course, it still had the 1.8 liter engine that was bumped up to make around 140 horsepower at the time the mazda speed version came out at the end of this life cycle back in 2004, and that was the first ever turbocharged and continues to be the Only factory turbocharged miata that made around 170 horsepower that miata actually continues to appreciate in value.
If you guys have a mazda speed, miata from 2004 to 2005, you might want to hold on to those for a little bit because they definitely or 2004 only. They definitely continue to hold their value, especially super clean examples that haven't been modified or raced in any way. Now, unfortunately, things started to go a little downhill for mazda when they introduced the 2006 miana, because that was known, and that was the unloved version by enthusiasts as the nc generation. Beyond that one actually had the longest lifespan. It went out for about 10 years. Finally, being replaced in 2016, but the nc miata introduced a lot of first for the company, i mean it introduced their first ever power retractable hard top. It introduced a 2 liter engine that made around 170 horsepower matching the output, of course, of the coveted mazda speed version, but it also got bigger bigger. It got a heavier. It got more luxurious, um it weighed in at around 2500 pounds, so it was known, of course, as the fat miata by a lot of enthusiasts. I personally did not like that generation that much i drove it a few times didn't like the bubbly styling. I did like the retractable hard top, but it just was too big. It kind of strayed away from the miata's mission as a lightweight sports car. So of course, mazda had to make several changes when a new generation was called back in 2016.. So now, of course, this generation miata, when it came out in 2016, basically allowed the company to go back to their roots because they wanted this car to feel just like the n, a miata which means they made it smaller.
They made it lighter by 200 pounds and, as you can see, for 2021, it has been on the market for the last six years and it's still one incredibly good, looking sports car that you can buy for not that much money now by beyond standards. This is the most technologically advanced and most powerful miata that mazda has ever built under the hood. Of course, this is known internally as the nd2 generation, because remember back in 2019, mazda replaced the 2 liter here with a reworked 2 liter that had strengthened internals. They raised the redline to 7 500 rpm and they increased horsepower by around 26. So this has 181 horsepower and i know 181 horsepower may not sound like a lot in today's day and age. Remember this car right here with the six speed manual weighs in at around 2300 pounds. So this is one of the lightest new cars that you can buy. It basically means you can get to 60 in around 5.7 seconds for something like this, so the miata is definitely not considered a slow car by the stretch, any stretch of the imagination but, as you can see for 2021, the nd2 generation is also personally. In my opinion, one of the best looking miatas that you can buy this particular color here is called snowflake white crystal pearl it's, around 300 bucks extra there's, a new gray top option which, by the way, you can still take your pick between a soft top like This one or a hard top it's, now known as a retractable fastback, because it's a little bit different and way better, looking versus the nc's top and if you guys go for the soft top.
This is still one of the most simplistic ways to put the top up and down. I can do it basically from right here where i can put the top right up: it's a manual top. It takes about a second to put up and down. If i want to lock the top, you basically just kind of lock it into place here and there you go, the top is secured. This is the new gray fabric top, as you can see, it's around a 200 extra and i think it's, actually a really good addition. Mazda used to offer a cherry red top that has been discontinued. They also offered a tan tops. Now the choice is either a black top or a gray top. My tester also has the black leather interior that comes with the gt with the contrasting white stitching there's a new white leather option for 2021 for 200 extra not available on this white color, though i'd. Probably go for the deep crystal blue with that white color, because or with that white interior, because that's, probably the personal specification that i would go, i think it's the best. Looking combination for 2021, i stalled it. I couldn't stop it now. Driving in the new nd2 miata is a constant reminder of why you love driving, which is precisely why i'm wearing my miata 30th anniversary hat that i got at a mazda event a couple years ago. This car is a constant reminder of why you just want to go for a drive without having anywhere that you really need to go because it's just so darn fun, i mean yes, the interior is a little bit cramped on the inside of this new one.
It does have some new tech features like wireless apple carplay, which is added to the grand touring this year, but once you're in this car it fits you like a glove. You feel a little bit confined, but it's also cozy. You feel like you're kind of cocooned. In this car, in a manner that's going to facilitate fun driving, i mean you basically are looking for the curviest road that you can find the emptiest road that you can find just because you want to go through the gears, because you want to hear this engine Rev out it's such a joy to constantly just drive this car. Nowhere and, of course, with this new engine it now revs to 7 500 rpm and offers up 181 horsepower, and it quickly feels like enough power for this car. For me, i mean yes, some enthusiasts. Might say: oh, you should slap a turbo on there put a louder exhaust. I say yes to the ladder ladder exhaust, but no to the turbo charger, because that's beating the whole point of this car. You add turbos, you add complexity, you add weight, you add cost and just like the brz and 86, you just want to drive this car as hard as you can and you're, not necessarily breaking the law. When you do, i mean at 45 40 miles an hour in this car. It feels like i'm going 60 miles an hour. I'Ve got the wind in my hair, i've got the top down.
The sun is just glistening down over me, and it just makes me fall in love with driving all over again and that's. The whole point of a miata it's, not necessarily to get there the fastest it's just to get there with the biggest smile on your face. Using the least amount of fuel without breaking the law, it's just a really fun car to drive and own and it's not going to break the bank that's what's, so amazing about this car. I find myself missing this car because remember i used to own one over my porsche cayman, gts way more, because this is just the car that i yearn to drive over and over again and it's, just crazy to me how. I still feel this way about this car, even though it's been on the market for the last five six years now. So if you can believe it, mazda actually managed to sell around 1300 units of these in march of 2021. 1300 units in the month of march represents a 165 sales increase over this time in march of 2020.. Now i know i know in march of 2020 last year, that's kind of when the global pandemic started, but the fact that people are still continuing to buy this car mazda says that is the most miatas they've ever sold in america since 2008. The company continues to sell a decent amount of these cars and remember this is not a practical suv or even a sedan for that matter, because it has only two seats: it's got a really small four and a half cubic foot trunk.
This is, by definition, a toy car that is actually pretty affordable. I mean at a starting price of 26 900 plus destination. This grand touring version here with the manual transmission, which includes the limited slip differential, the bilstein shocks, the strut tower brace underneath stickers for a little over 33 000 in my week's worth of testing. With this thing, i averaged over 35 miles to the gallon on the highway and around 29 around town i used to own one of these cars. Remember i had an nd miata when it first came out. It was in the ceramic metallic color, which unfortunately monster doesn't offer anymore and i'm, pretty surprised to admit that i actually still miss that car today. I would gladly own one of these as my second toy car, that i drive on weekends, simply because it still follows the basic miata formula here: we've got a lightweight near perfectly: balanced rear, drive sports car with a easy fabric, soft top that has just a rather Simplified layout on the interior that doesn't cost much money to buy, cost much money to own costs, much money to ensure and still puts a huge smile on your face. You can enjoy all of this performance without having the fear of necessarily breaking the law, because this car is one of those vehicles. That literally makes it feel like you're, going twice the speed limit when you're actually just doing the speed limit. So to answer my question earlier, when you want a sports car, is the answer still miata? Yes, the answer is always going to be miata because this car here, no one else on the market even comes close to what mazda is offering.
I mean sure you could get something like the subaru brz and the upcoming toyota gr86, but they are not a drop top. If you want an actual drop top, you really need to go to a bmw, z4 or a porsche boxster which easily costs twice the amount of money before options can easily cost. You know two and a half three times the amount of money, and this is what mazda has kept so successful it's, why this car manages to sell nearly 500 000 units in america over a million produced across the world? And my big question here that i have for mazda is what's next for this generation i mean yes, it is definitely going to be due for replacement in the next, maybe two to three years, but is mazda going to go electrified with this car? Are they going to keep the formula? The same? I mean yes, electrification and self driving is coming. This car don't even think about asking mazda for a hybrid powertrain, for it offers some driver assistance tech, but if mazda did make this thing all electric, it would kind of stray away from the lightweight philosophy. A big row of batteries underneath will make this thing much heavier. It definitely would give it the kind of acceleration that i think that the miata still could probably benefit. For i mean yes, it has plenty of power. I think right now in its current state, but there are still owners out there that are going to change the exhaust they're going to put turbo underneath really.
I just hope that mazda keeps the formula true to the original, and it gets me super excited, because i hope the company continues to keep this in their portfolio and with sales continuing to stay relatively strong. We should expect mazda to continue to do another generation and it's one of the best sports cars you can buy. So for those of you who have not driven a miata be sure to put this one on your list, because if you want a fun weekend toy that won't break the bank, the answer is still always me on, but with all that said, i hope you guys Have enjoyed my video on the 2021 mazda miata talking about, of course, the history, the lineage of this vehicle, if you're also looking to see the latest cars i'm testing, be sure to follow me on instagram at redline underscore reviews like us on facebook and, as always Guys, please keep subscribing to the redline reviews youtube channel for all the latest reviews.