Watch Modded Mazda Miata Valiantly Battle Muscle Cars At Drag Strip

For those who don’t have first-generation Mazda MX-5 Miata stats memorized, here’s a quick refresher. When it launched in 1990, this now-iconic sports car offered a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine in a 2,100-pound car with perfect weight distribution. The NA Miata featured in this video from Drag Racing and Car Stuff might still be a 2,100-pound machine. But it’s safe to say everything else is radically different.

Exactly how radical are we talking? Sadly we don’t have a full list of modifications to review, but the owner of this monster MX-5 offers a clue with his YouTube username of Lsx_Miata239. Presumably, there’s now a Chevrolet-sourced LSX V8 under the hood but it goes way beyond an engine swap. We see a massive turbocharger on the right side of the engine bay, sticking well above the front clip. For that matter, it looks like half the engine rests above the fenders. It pulls wheelies like nobody’s business, and it consistently runs low 8-second passes in this video.

But is it enough to run with modified muscle cars from Detroit? The video shows highlights from a recent event at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Florida, where all the Miata’s competitors were parachute-wearing 8-second cars. The first round of action sees a Dodge Challenger lose by 19 hundredths of a second in a very close battle, but from there, the races get even closer. After getting slaughtered off the line by a white fifth-generation Ford Mustang, the plucky Miata enters hyperspace to nab a come-from-behind photo finish.

With the preliminary rounds done, the MX-5 faces another Mustang in the semi-finals. Some mind games at the starting line finally see the Miata driver stage first, and then it’s another photo finish with the margin of victory being just 7 thousandths of a second. Let’s say that again: 7 thousandths of a second.

The video wraps up with one more race after this nail-biter, featuring a turbocharged fourth-generation Chevrolet Camaro. Is it a Mustang-versus-Camaro final or does the Miata take center stage? It’s outstanding racing all around, so jump into the video for all the action.

You can also check out the Rambling About Cars podcast for other Mustang news and more cool car content, available below.

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