The 1990 Mazda MX-5, known as the Miata or Eunos in other markets, made its debut at the 1989 Chicago motor show
This chassis number 15 model is the exact car which made that debut, with the car selling almost 100,000 units in its first year
This M Coupé first appeared as a concept car at the 1996 New York show
The M Coupé featured a wider stance, with new rims and lowered suspension marking it out against the M-Speedster
This model was the 14th Miata ever built
Mazda says it took "everything the world loved about the legendary British sports cars from the 1960s" to create the Miata
This Miata was originally intended to compete in the Sports Car Club of the Americas Escort Endurance racing series
The team that was to run this car were unable to secure sponsorship, however, so the model was donated to racer Dan Edmunds
This club racer made its debut at the 1989 Chicago motor show as a concept car
Interestingly, this model still wears the same Yokohama AVS tires it had on for its debut
This M-Speedster concept was seen at the 1995 Chicago motor show
The 1.8-litre engine of this MX-5 was fitted with various engine upgrades and new performance suspension
This 1998 Miata previewed the second generation of the car, and the only model to be made in 1998
This was the 500,000th Miata model to be built, more than ten years after the first
The second-generation Miata was introduced in 1999
This 1999 Miata is presented in SCCA specification, with this model being turned into a racer in 2008
Mazda says that on any weekend there are more Mazdas road racing in the US than any other brand of car
This 2004 Mazdaspeed MX-5 came with a turbocharged 1.8-litre engine with 178bhp
The Mazdaspeed marked the first time that badge had appeared on a turbocharged MX-5
At the SEMA trade show in 2011 Mazda presented this Super20 model, which has more than 247bhp available
Mazda celebrates the 25th birthday of its MX-5 by releasing this anniversary model
Kicking off the collection of rare and exclusive cars were the three exact cars that made their debut at the Chicago motor show in 1989.
The manufacturer had set out to reinvent the fun of British sports cars from the 1960s. Suffice it to say that the combination of British sports car fun and Japanese reliability proved to be a hit with customers; the original Mazda MX-5 – also known as the Eunos or Miata, depending on market – sold almost 100,000 units in its first year of production.
The MX-5 quickly became a popular platform for tuners, with a range of engine modifications and performance enhancements quickly offered. The Club Racer concept, the second car of the original trio, featured lowered suspension, different headlights and wider wheel arches to accommodate its 15-inch alloys.
The third car to be shown as part of the original debut cars was originally supposed to take part on the Sports Car Club of America's Escort Endurance racing series, but had to pull out when the team running it was unable to secure sponsorship.
Rather than retire, the car was donated to racer Dan Edmunds and became the first ever MX-5 to compete in motorsport, racking up 6,500 miles. Today, Mazda says more of its cars are raced at the weekend in the US than any other car brand.
Mazda's M-Speedster concept car made its debut in Chicago in 1995, with more aggressive styling and integrated storage for two racing helmets. Power from its 1.8-litre engine was boosted by a supercharger, taking its overall output to 197bhp.
In 1996, Mazda showed its M-Coupé concept at the New York motor show. While similar to the previous M-Speedster, the M-Coupé received a wider stance with new rims and lowered suspension.
Two years later and Mazda was ready to preview the second generation of the MX-5 with the 1998 model. Part of the design brief given to Mazda's engineers was to find a way to increase the boot space of the original model without compromising its shape. If the continued success of the Miata in second-generation form is anything to go by, they succeeded.
In 2004, Mazda released its Mazdaspeed-badged MX-5, with the model on display here celebrating the 700,000th model built. This was the first time a turbocharged Mazdaspeed model had been sold without the Miata badge, instead the firm chose to use the more global MX-5 name for the North American market. Just 5142 units were made over two years.
Jump to 2011's SEMA trade show in Las Vegas, and Mazda revealed its MX-5 Super20. Thanks to its supercharged engine the Super20 had 247bhp available, as well as special alloy wheels and performance Toyo tyres. The MX-5's standard soft-top roof was also replaced with a hardtop, while the interior was outfitted with special leather seats.
Mazda also revealed a new special edition model to celebrate the car's 25th anniversary. The special features an engine upgraded with new hand-selected parts including a new flywheel, connecting rods and pistons.
The company claims this special MX-5's 2.0-litre engine will rev more freely than before, and will have 165bhp on tap. Inside new off-white leather seats feature alongside new logos and stitching.
What are your memories of the Mazda MX-5? Let us know in the comments section below.
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