Tag Archives: JDM

Hawaii Monthly Miata Meet at Pearlridge Center

The stars aligned just right to allow me to check out the monthly Thursday night meet-up of Hawaii Miata owners on O’ahu on my Waikiki vacation…

It’s my young nephews first Hawaii vacation, and for a moment I was thinking of bringing the older boy along, but if I did I wouldn’t have gotten a lift back to the hotel in a gorgeous low mileage Miata driven by a kind Aussie fellow who was recently posted to the islands and clearly missed his own NA back home in Australia

The fellow that sold him the American Miata – Avery, has a fleet of Miatas in Hawaii… is one of the original members of the Hawaii club and a very active SCCA solo and Rallycross member, and for me was the person that invited me to this meet up. For which I’m really grateful.

The meet happens the second Thursday of the month at Pearlridge mall not too far from Pearl Harbor… And if you’re like me trying to get there by public transport from Waikiki Beach, it’s an hour long ride on the bus, that is well worth it.

Here’s some pics from the Hawaii Miata car scene:

That wang…

Very happy to have seen the NC show up… that was sort of my goal for the night.

Also thrilled to experience this altogether, the Japanese car culture is strong in Hawaii. Besides the Miatas there were a bunch of Subies present, and a Trueno-esque Toyota… not sure if real but cool nonetheless.

Mazda MX-5: Fish & Chips Run with MX-5 Club of New Zealand Members from Auckland CBD towards Coromandel

back to: South Pacific MX-5 Miata Road Trip Overview

f-australiaMX-5 Shopping in the Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

f-australiaMX-5 Road Trip from Kirribilli to Balmoral, NSW, Australia

MX-5 Road Trip from Papakura towards Coromandel, NZ

MX-5 Hire Cars on Holiday in Rarotonga, Cook Islands


No sooner was one MX-5 Fish & Chips run over in Aussie another one was underway with the Kiwi Roadster owners in New Zealand.

I got incredibly lucky once again finding a local NZ MX-5 owner willing to show me around on a weekday upon my arrival. Lloyd offered to take me on a 300+ km Road Trip around the North Island. We were hoping a few other MX-5 Club of New Zealand owners would chime in but it was the middle of the week  and many were busy with everyday life. The initial plan was to go around the Coromandel Peninsula, a trip that could have taken all day based on the Auckland traffic, so instead we compromised a little and Lloyd surprised me with an awesome end to the trip: a sunset dinner cruise on a fellow MX-5 owner’s boat. It was pretty incredible!

As I was flying over from Australia Lloyd e-mailed me that another fella with an MX-5 would be picking me up in the morning: Ralph. Now we had two cars for our little adventure and every time we stopped to take pictures I’d swap cars, getting plenty of seat time in two JDM imported NC’s while chatting the ears off of their drivers.  These were the first two proper “Roadsters” I got to experience, Ralph’s was fairly stock while Lloyd’s had the Mazdaspeed treatment complete with a full body kit, exhaust and some other goodies hiding underneath… I call the cars Roadsters because they are in fact legitimate Japanese Domestic Market – JDM Roadsters that were imported to New Zealand second hand, as many often do. That was a little added caveat to my experience.

But enough talking, here’s some photos (of which I took a million):

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Based on the GPS geo-tagging function on my phone/photos I believe the route we took included the following coordinates: Auckland CBD > Papakura > Waiuku > Tuakau > Les Batkin Reserve > Waikato River > Pukekawa > Churchill > Lake Whangape > Rangiriri West > Rangiriri > Te Kauwhata  > Maramarua > Miranda > Kaiaua > Whakatiwai > Orere Point > Tapapakanga Regional Park > Kawakawa Bay > Kawakawa-Orere Road Reserve > Papakura

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Yes, it’s an actual Eunos Roadster when that was a thing in Japan.

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I’m so grateful to Lloyd and Ralph for hanging out with me for a day and putting so many k’s on their cars to show me a good time. Thanks guys!

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After posing for all these pictures and sorting stuff to upload to Facebook, Lloyd and Debbie loaded me up into their other car and headed back up towards Auckland for our 7pm launch. Where another MX-5 owner was waiting for us with his family to share a nice sunset dinner cruise out in the Auckland harbour. What a way to end an already awesome day? Really an amazing experience.

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sunset over auckland from the harbour

Huge thanks to the always hospitable Kiwis for making my journey to New Zealand an incredible one. I am forever grateful!

Mazda MX-5: Miata Shopping in Singapore while on Southeast Asia MX-5 Miata Road Trip

back to: Southeast Asia Miata Road Trip Overview

f-thailandBangkok MX-5 Owners Meet-up

f-thailandThailand MX-5 Road Trip to the Laos Border

f-singaporeSingapore MX-5 Owners Meet-up

f-singaporeMX-5 Miata Shopping in Singapore

f-malaysiaKuala Lumpur MX-5 Owners Meet-up

f-malaysiaMalaysia MX-5 Owners Cruise to Petronas Towers


Normally my time spent in Singapore revolves around foodie experiences, but this time I did something completely new that I’ve never done while visiting the tiny island state: I went car shopping! Naturally I wasn’t actually going to buy a car while on my 24 hour visit, but since my friend and I had some time to kill between lunch and dinner, we decided to hit the dealerships to kick some tires of new and used ND Mazda MX-5’s and Roadsters.

I’ve passed a whole row of dealership a million times while in Singapore as the East-West MRT line goes directly above them, but never set foot inside until now. And it was a really neat experience.

We first went to check out a Mazda dealer with a new Singapore-spec ND MX-5 in stock:

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The dealership is like any other in the US, except that all the cars are locked including this gem that I went ahead and posed with. Why? Probably has something to do with the sticker price.

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Oh yeah! You read that right… $166k for a stick shift, and $169 for the auto. That’s not a mistake. Car ownership in Singapore is pricey. It’s important to understand that the majority of that price goes to the COE – or Certificate of Entitlement that you buy for a period of 10 years at which point you are expected to scrap the vehicle, unless of course you buy another COE and pay for annual inspections. Singapore is a crowded city and the high prices help with congestion, though you wouldn’t notice it after being stuck in many traffic jams. Of course after spending a small fortune on a car, many continue to dump more money into it by modifying and customizing the crap out of it to their liking.

The dealership also had some cars that not only we don’t have in the US but ones I didn’t know Mazda made… like these two minivans:

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Mazda 8 and a Mazda Biante… whatever that is.

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After we finished gawking at the new cars, my buddy Joey whom I was going to marshal with in Malaysia a few days later got in touch, he works for a dealership on the other side of town near Changi, and after a brief chat we decided to go and visit him at work to see more new and used cars for sale.

Unlike American or Australian dealerships, Singapore has to make due with the little space they have. So one dealership complex we visited was a five or six story parking lot, with various dealers sharing space on each floor. So we went hunting for a pre-owned Mazda Miata there.

singapore car shopping toyota alphard

singapore car shopping toyota veilside

While living in Asia I was very fond of the futuristic looking minivans from Toyota called Alphard and Veilside. The Veilside was a sporty version of the Alphard if I were to describe the two. The latest models seem to resemble something from the Transformers movie.

singapore car shopping toyota harier

singapore car shopping toyota mark X

The Toyota Harrier was the Japanese domestic version of the Lexus RX until of course Toyota killed off the model and started selling Lexus directly to the Japanese market. The cheaper version was so popular they decided to reintroduce it, but now the two look quite different. The white sedan is a Toyota Mark X model, just like the one used in the Hangover 2 movie in the Bangkok scenes. Neat car!

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singapore car shopping honda s2000 side

singapore car shopping honda s2000

And then we stumbled upon this beauty… what looks to be a heavily modified Honda S2000 Type S… shame it’s going to be scrapped.

And finally, a JDM market ND Mazda Roadster:

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With a price tag north of $100k SGD… nice!

So happy to have had this opportunity to check out some cars for sale in Singapore. It was quite an experience to say the least. I can’t even imagine how the locals could justify paying prices that they do, but hey! when you make money you spend money… so it’s all good!

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Mazda MX-5: JDM “Roadster” badge

My JDM Mazda “Roadster” badge has arrived from Japan.

A few weeks ago I was contemplating whether to get a JDM Roadster badge for the rear decklid of my car, see this post: To “Roadster” or Not to “Roadster”? As much as I couldn’t justify spending close to $30 bux for a plastic badge, almost double what I paid for a Mazda badge I got earlier to stick on the inside of the car (check out this post: Personal touches to my Miata) I went ahead and ordered it. The price was only a few cents different to buy from an American seller in California and getting the real deal from Japan. I chose the Japanese option, a company called Amayama which billed my PayPal account through their Singapore HQ apparently.

But anyway, fast forward to today, I went and picked up the giant EMS shipping envelope. Had to go to the post office because I wasn’t home when the box arrived last week. It was meticulously packed and nothing was damaged, so it was well worth the $13 in shipping.

roadster 1

roadster 1a

roadster 2a

To mount the badge I had to wash the few inches of dust off the car from the Watkins Glen Road trip. And then the “MAZDA” debadging begun. There was some residue that was left when I peeled the original badge off. But with some serious rubbing using an Alcohol swab and Windex, it came off nicely.

I couldn’t initially decide where to mount the badge.

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On the right where it appears in Japan instead of the MX-5 badge.

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In the center like some folks on Miata.net have done.

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Or on the left instead of the Mazda badge which looks a bit odd.

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And that’s what I ended up doing. The Mazda badge looks a bit out of place where it is. So much so that later NC2 and NC3 miatas came without it on the trunk lid. Only the MX-5 badge appears. So I was happy to remove it.

The final result looks awesome, in my view:

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roadster 4

roadster 4a

roadster 4b

The car is further personalized to my tastes, and I like it very much!

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Mazda MX-5: To “Roadster” or Not To Roadster?

UPDATE: The “Roadster” badge has been purchased/installed. Click here for the latest post: JDM “Roadster” badge.

 

I’m debating whether to add or replace the stock badge with a JDM (Japanese Domestic Market) “Roadster” badge on the trunk of my MX-5 Miata.

Should I?

The badge would either replace or be added above the standard “MX-5” badge on the right side of the trunk or replace the “Mazda” badge on the left side of the trunk. Like so:

mx-5 roadster badge
Photo credit: http://forum.miata.net/vb/archive/index.php/t-284504.html

or like so:

mx-5

The badge is available for sale from a few places. Password:JDM sells it for $21.50 plus $5.50 shipping. eBay has a US seller listing it at $39 + $6 shipping, and a Japanese seller listed $30 + $17 shipping. Someone on Miata.net pointed out a Japanese company that lists it at a more realistic $13.45 + whatever shipping may cost.

roadster oem
Photo credit: http://forum.miata.net/vb/showthread.php?p=7580209

I’m tempted to order it to further personalize my car. After these little touches there will be other more performance oriented mods/repairs. But at this point I think I’ll stick to the aesthetics.

 

Read about this post from December about the initial personal touches to my Mazda: Personal touchest to my Miata.