The Mazda Miata is a favorite of nearly all car enthusiasts. It has just about everything that we could ask for (aside from speed): solid weight distribution, a good chassis, good driving feel, affordability, reliability, and easy modification. The newest iteration of the Miata is still a proper roadster yet has a beautiful interior that makes it feel far above its $25,000 price tag.
Miatas of years past have become very cheap and, as a result, are an easy car to mod. They can be bought used for a few thousand dollars (or less), and their relatively simple construction allows for all sorts of fenders, splitters, spoilers, and suspension systems to be installed. It's easy to tell when people have put effort into their modified car – they work with care and respect, leading to end-products that show how dedicated their owners are. Unfortunately, lack of taste and effort show through glaringly, leading to some atrocities that don't belong on the roads, lest they be seen by our poor eyes.
This good-looking Miata is one of the most aggressive on this list. Many design elements come together to craft this look. Muscular wheels arches coupled with the lowered suspension give this car a wide, athletic stance. A front splitter and body moldings bring the car closer to the ground and make for a more dynamic shape, letting us know the driver means business. While the rear spoiler is unlikely to be useful when driving the Miata, it certainly makes the little car stand out and catches the eyes of bystanders.
This Miata has had some subtle work done, yet it stands out from the stock variants and is pleasing to the eye. Its hardtop roof, not standard, adds an air of sophistication to the small car. The unique body style and roofline catch eyes, as nothing else on the road looks quite like a hardtop Miata. The wheels, accents, and fender flares are all striking black, which creates a uniform look and unites the vehicle. The stripe of orange on the side skirts pulls your eye along the Miata, making sure that all of its tidy details are absorbed by your eyes.
This first Miata is the embodiment of all good things that can come from modifying your car. The care that the owner put into this vehicle is evident, seeing that this model is from the 90s and in excellent shape, perhaps in better shape than most modern cars. The owner has given this Miata a vibrant paint job, a decent amount of lowering, and a set of simple wheels that pull the look of the car together. This Miata is well put together and appears to have mechanical mods as well, and is one that we’d certainly love to drive.
The newest generation of the Miata has been available for some time now, allowing drivers to purchase and modify this roadster. You won’t see too many newer modified Miatas on the road as they cost quite a bit more than their older, used counterparts. T
his is one new Miata that we are glad to see on the road.
It has a lowered, but still usable, ride height. Its custom wheels are subtle, yet work beautifully with the rest of the car.
This Miata is older, but has been well-cared for. It is a rare MazdaSpeed Miata, which came with a coveted turbocharged engine. Subtle fender flares and an updated paint job make this Miata stand out amongst the competition.
The car is lowered nicely, and the wheels have a bit of camber to them.
This fits well with the added flares, adding a purpose to the mod itself. The interior of the Miata has been updated, too. A classic roll-bar and new bucket seats likely make the driver’s seat of this car a very nice place to be.
Here we have another hardtop Miata, albeit an older one. The car does look good with the convertible top retracted, but the hardtop looks equally good. This Miata has an excellent paint job that makes it look like a new car, despite more dated styling cues. Small, well-crafted wheels work well with the retro-styling and glossy paint, bringing the whole car together. A slightly lowered suspension is what we like to see, meaning that the Miata doesn’t have to be driven ridiculously slowly around any sort of minor undulation in the pavement.
This Miata looks like a blast to take up any canyon. Its wide, beefy tires keep it stable in corners, making for a great driving experience. Its lowered suspension likely adds to that experience, while also making the car satisfying to look at.
The body kit is bordering on excessive, but the aggressive rear part makes up for it.
The tow hitch, coupled with a sporty stainless-steel exhaust, shows that work has been put into multiple aspects of the car and that the mods enhance the driving experience, not just the looks of the car.
This Miata is one of the best looking ones on our list. It combines many aspects of great modified cars that make them desirable. This Miata is older, but has been kept in wonderful shape and its paint job makes it shine. Body molding, new wheels, new brakes, and a roll bar make this car stand out from others on the road. A large intercooler up front would suggest that this Miata has some decent mechanical mods, too, making us even more tempted to drive it.
This Miata has similar mods to the ones we have previously mentioned: a hardtop roof, fender flares, new wheels, and a lowered suspension. These are all great mods that make this Miata look excellent, but what we love most of all is that the car is being driven hard, as the manufacturer intended. Too many great drivers' cars are built to sit at car shows, looking pretty without actually doing any hard driving. That is great, sure, as long as the car is used for its intended purpose: in this case, that is “spirited” driving. We love to see these great cars getting driven rather than collecting dust.
This last Miata, much like the others, is a well-taken care of older model. These fabulous cars have great pedigree, and it is wonderful to see them taken care of rather than left to rust.
This one is no exception, as you can see from its brilliant paint job and shiny wheels.
The ride height is still usable, keeping this car on our good side. Additionally, it is good to see that the owner still drives this car through open and scenic roads. These Miatas all have heritage and age behind them, and it is a great thing when they are truly taken care of.
And here is the part of the list we wish we didn’t have to write, but unfortunately, a number of drivers do their Miatas a disservice by performing useless and hideous modifications. This one is no exception.
While its lowered suspension and new wheels are appealing, the horrifying spoiler has spoiled this Miata.
It doesn’t even look like it was built by someone who knows what they’re doing – this homemade wing looks like it is about to fall off the poor Miata.
To its credit, this is not that bad of a Miata. It has a lowered suspension, nice wheels, and a solid paint job. However, it’s missing something important: a windshield! While this vehicle is clearly built for the track, it does the driver no good to remove the windshield. All that it accomplishes is an uncomfortable, buffeting ride that is definitely unnecessary.
This Miata breaks all the rules. Sure, it may be cool to look at, but it is completely against the spirit of this roadster. The car has lost its ability to corner well, to handle well, and probably to even ride comfortably.
Also, if there is a car body that is horrible for off-roading, it’s the Miata.
It is small, has very little cargo space, and is light and flimsy. In fact, it’s surprising that the owner would put so much trust into such a little engine, if this Miata ever makes it to a trail.
Yet again, this Miata has been misused. While this supercharged off-road contraption may be capable, it is not a driver’s car anymore.
Taking this vehicle up the canyon would be a test of your nerves as the body shakes and bumps along, taking away any driving enjoyment.
The owner clearly invested a significant amount of time, money, and effort into making this Miata an off-road vehicle, but it all would have been better-directed towards a Jeep, or really anything else.
Although the fresh paint job and shiny wheels on this Miata sparkle, the ride height makes it nearly unusable. Modifications are great: they add an aspect of personalization and flair to your ride, but a mod becomes pointless if it upsets the functionality of your ride. With a ride height this low, the Miata will scrape on every speed bump, every driveway, or even on a leaf in the road. The lack of usability ruins an otherwise nice vehicle.
This example is just plain ugly. Body modifications are great, and when done correctly can greatly improve the look of a car. However, they can also go wrong quite easily. This Miata is all kinds of overkill. Its bulky body kit and unnecessary front splitter detract from the beautiful simplicity of the original design.
The good-looking Miatas that have appeared on this list may have slightly flamboyant mods, but they are coupled with a sense of restraint.
This Miata does not show any restraint, and is far too brash to appear pleasing.
This Miata is so ghastly we’d rather go blind than look at it – which could be easily accomplished on a sunny day. A chrome wrap is something that could work on some cars, but only if it is well done.
This looks more like someone cut a chrome wrap into pieces and mashed it back onto this poor Miata.
That, and the red convertible top is not visually appealing. The owner will likely keep the top raised so that they aren’t seen in this poorly made car.
This Miata may be built to be fast - but a clunky body kit does not fit the car well. This is an older Miata from the 90s, and as such has a relatively simple body. This would be improved by simple fender flares, a small splitter, and overall simple modifications.
Instead, the owner has thrown a bulky hood, wide fender flares, and a huge splitter onto this Miata. It may have sporting credentials, but unfortunately this Miata has been ruined cosmetically by too much fuss.
There is nothing wrong with pink. It’s a great color, and actually looks nice on many cars. However, that is when it is done with conviction. This Miata could have had flair, but instead it is bland.
Sure, the color pops, but the car does not have any other mods. It’s even still on stock wheels. If you’re going to make your car stand out, you should do so with pride, not in a boring way like this driver did.
This is perhaps the worst Miata on this list. However, it is built this way on purpose. The owner calls it the “Ruined Miata”, and it is meant to be as ridiculous as possible, which lands it on our list.
It is almost literally impossible to drive – extreme camber and a super low suspension make for a harsh ride and going over a bump is nearly impossible. However, as horrible as it is, this Miata is probably the most interesting on this list.