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Benefits of NB vs NA (vs ND??)

 
Old 03-07-2018, 09:36 AM
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Question Benefits of NB vs NA (vs ND??)

Hi!

I am wondering if there are any benefits in owning an NA vs NB (besides NA looking better) in my particular case.

To explain my problem in a bit more detail, in few months I finally have a chance to start really focusing on my "track"/daily/mountain-carving car hobby for atleast few years. I currently own a NB Miata with stock 1.8l NON-VVT engine, no ABS, with power steering and with hard top. I have owned the car for two years. The car has about 120000 miles on the clock and it is working quite well. I replaced the original open dif with a Torsen one, and I have replaced many original parts like CAT, timing belt, water pump etc. to make the car to work as well as possible. The only problem is that the car has rust on both rear sills, and this rust has already been fixed once by the previous owner... I am really afraid of what I would find under the steel if I would try to fix this rust again.

I want to start slowly building a car for myself to enjoy on the alps and on the track. Plan would be to get firstly a steering wheel and coolant re-route, then some coilovers, then hopefully a cage to compliment my bucket seat and six-point harness, then if I feel like i need more power, some performance modifications for the engine.

I am now presented with the following options:

1. Keep the current Miata since I already know everything about it and I know that besides the rust it is fairly solid base to build on with the 1.8l engine.
2. I have always wanted a NA miata because of the way it looks, so I am considering of selling the NB and look for an NA before I want to start building.
3. Buy an ND miata, but I am afraid that it would be boring to own as propably there is not much that could be done to it without spending stupid amounts of money.

The question really is that are there any good reasons to switch from a 1.8l NB to a NA (hopefully 1.8 also) from performance or parts availibility point of view. I know that NA and NB are very close to eachother but have some differences in some suspension parts etc.
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Old 03-07-2018, 10:11 AM
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NA has less space in the engine bay because the pop up lights. NB is a bit stiffer. Both are going to rust so if you're able to find an NA in the condition you're happy with, and have always wanted one, then why not. It's older, more things to replace and update...luckily for those platforms there is a lot of cross compatibility. ND is nice, but if you want to tinker, it'll be relatively pricey compared to the products available on the NA/NB. NC's are dropping in price now and have some decent support.

Ultimately, only you can answer this question, not the opinions of the internet. That's how you get things like Boaty McBoatface and Gritsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Anti-Slip Machiney


I started on an NA, went over the deep end, and finally wish I had an NB.
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Old 03-09-2018, 07:54 AM
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Probably every Miata owner had the same questions prior to buying their car. It's funny you point out the NA as "better looking". I never considered a Miata when I was looking for a "fun" car because I automatically thought of the NA's. I think the pop up headlights are a big negative and decided that the NB was a good looking car. From there I went on to discover the differences in the NB model years before landing on my 2003.

Looks are a very subjective thing, but the facts about the differences between the models and sub-models aren't subjective at all. Even big fans of the NA seem to agree that the early ones aren't a good choice for an enthusiast, due to brakes, differential etc. Your car, your choice. Fortunately, there are forums like this to aid in making a good choice as long as you dig deep enough. The one constant, from my point of view, is to avoid rust. Hope you find the right car.

Paul

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Old 03-10-2018, 10:30 AM
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2001-2002 nb2 are THE best platforms to have.
stiffer chassy, better tire clearance, more room under hood for turbo stuff, torsen diffs, better headlights, better bumper styling.

I've owned them all. 94na, 99nb1 and now 2002 nb2 and it's by far my favorite.

make sure what ever you buy has no rust.
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Old 03-10-2018, 10:52 AM
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NB1 > NB2. Fite me IRL m8.
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Old 03-10-2018, 11:29 AM
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All the best NAs have undergone hours of labor and thousands of dollars to transform them into what a good 6sp 01-02 NB2 comes with from the factory. VVT motor, 6sp, NB subframe, Sport brakes, larger fuel tank, better interior, stiffer chassis, projector beams, better aero platform, etc. Start with an 01-02 NB2.

If/when I re-shell Rover it will be as an NB2.
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Originally Posted by codrus View Post
Basically I've come over to the camp of "If something is a reliability problem on the track, just ask Andrew and do what he says".
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Old 03-10-2018, 04:12 PM
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Yep,the NB 2 is the best for value. All models can be made fast. But nothing will be as cheap to do quick lap times as an NB8B. The only compromise that I prefer is an NA shell with NB8B everything. It took me about 4 days to complete a swap. But it was worth it. Lighter car, and I think the NA looks good too. Just buy a cheap NA with a good body, strip and sell all the parts. Buy a smashed NB2, strip and use all the bits. In my opinion the NB1 is ugly and I would never buy one, as they have the worst combo of any MX5.
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Old 03-10-2018, 06:00 PM
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I should have bought an 04 instead of a 97, I would miss the jap flaps but that's about it.
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Old 03-15-2018, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by concealer404 View Post
NB1 > NB2. Fite me IRL m8.
Sounds reasonable, I think I will keep the NB1.

Tbh I gave some thought to this and I think I will just buy a second Miata, if the pop-up headlights become too irresistable, as a "back-up" daily. I have already spent enough time with my NB1 to not want to let it go so easily.

SO next up rust repair
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Old 03-24-2018, 06:27 PM
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I'm on my 3rd NA. Thought about going NB, but really wanted another NA & boosted this time w/no rust rockers. Found my 97 & bought it. Do not regret it. I also thought about just going to an ND, but there are other cars I want too so why not have a nice NA plus those other cars? Winning!
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Old 03-24-2018, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Savington View Post
All the best NAs have undergone hours of labor and thousands of dollars to transform them into what a good 6sp 01-02 NB2 comes with from the factory. VVT motor, 6sp, NB subframe, Sport brakes, larger fuel tank, better interior, stiffer chassis, projector beams, better aero platform, etc. Start with an 01-02 NB2.

If/when I re-shell Rover it will be as an NB2.
You're talking like NAs aren't competitive without all that which we know is false.
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Old 03-24-2018, 08:08 PM
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One advantage to the early NA which it seems only I ever point out is that it is an OBD1 car. Why does this matter to me? Well, I can drive my well tuned car to the emissions station and get it smogged without having to perform any trickery. Now this obviously isn't much of an issue for a track only car, or in areas that don't require smog, but where I live they do.

I have been down the road before with the whole tear the car apart every two years to register, then put it back together thing. I did not enjoy that at all.
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Old 03-27-2018, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Ted75zcar View Post
One advantage to the early NA which it seems only I ever point out is that it is an OBD1 car. Why does this matter to me? Well, I can drive my well tuned car to the emissions station and get it smogged without having to perform any trickery. Now this obviously isn't much of an issue for a track only car, or in areas that don't require smog, but where I live they do.
And there aren't any NDs that qualify for Historic/Antique plates. Heck, I don't think there are any states where even NBs qualify yet—are there any states with <20 year requirement?
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Old 03-27-2018, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Agent-Orange View Post
You're talking like NAs aren't competitive without all that which we know is false.
Oh? Do tell.
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Old 03-27-2018, 03:17 PM
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Don't use the term "we" when you post silly false statements.

You're far too clueless to be making those.
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Old 03-27-2018, 03:38 PM
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I'll let the locals handle this one
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Originally Posted by codrus View Post
Basically I've come over to the camp of "If something is a reliability problem on the track, just ask Andrew and do what he says".
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Old 03-27-2018, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Savington View Post
I'll let the locals handle this one
"We" used to call them "townies."
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Old 03-27-2018, 08:00 PM
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You say 01-02 NB... Why not 03-05? What changed?
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Old 03-27-2018, 08:02 PM
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Differential.
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Old 03-28-2018, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Chiburbian View Post
You say 01-02 NB... Why not 03-05? What changed?
The '03-05 used a less robust differential than the earlier Torsen. The '03 was the first year that had the larger "Sport" brakes as standard equipment though. In my case, when I turboed the car I upgraded to a 3:90 Torsen differential. I would have needed to change to diff anyway for the gearing so no big deal. It IS an important fact to consider.

Paul
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