1997 Mazda MX-5 Miata

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1997 Mazda MX-5 Miata

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Available in 1 styles:  MX-5 Miata 2dr Convertible shown
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Asking Price Range
$1,444–$10,336

Estimated MPG

23 city / 29.1 hwy


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Average Ratings

Overall

5.0 out of 5

Comfort
Performance
Exterior Styling
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Value for the Money
Reliability

11 out of 12 people recommended this car.


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    1-10 of 12 reviews

really like my first sports car

by mid life crisis from Midland, TX | November 18, 2013

First convertible I have owned. Bought the car in TN and drove it to TX. It was every thing that was advertised. The car drives really well and I enjoy it a lot.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Just getting around
Does recommend this car


Most fun in 4 wheels

by Mgracerx from Danbury, CT | October 21, 2013

Got this car with the intentions of being a commuter car. As a single guy, I didn't need much and loved that it had pop up lights and convertible! I went with an older miata 1st generation but newer 1997 with the 1.8 engine and I loved it as soon as I turned the key. This is a very impractical car for a big family but for me it was perfect, everything about it screams FUN. the RWD and 5 speed layout is everything I could ever want. Since it's a small car, you doubt it is fast but it brings you up to speed when you really need it and it's very cheap to maintain and VERY VERY reliable. If you take good care of it with regular maintenance it will bring you years of reliability and smiles when you drive. The MPG is excellent and the balance is everything you could ever want. The handling is superb and you will be able to pull some stunts off that you could not in your regular everyday car. You never look uncool in the car and everyone responds to the car with random compliments, smiles, and waves from strangers. It seems like everywhere I go, I at least make someone smile which makes me want to drive it even more! This is one of the cars that will stay running forever because I would never think of trading this in, I would rather add an extra car than ever think about getting rid of my little miata!

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


' 97 Miata

by Miata Fan from Salem, Oregon | May 23, 2013

I wanted an automatic found this car in Sacramento, CA. without Cars.com I would not have found the car I wanted in the area close to our home state :-)

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Having fun
Does not recommend this car


Great little car

by Happy Miata Owner from San Francisco | December 8, 2012

My 97 Miata has 265,000 miles on it. I bought it used at 70,000 miles. It just keeps on going. I totally recommend this car. Low maintenance.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


Mazda Mx5

by McQueen from Suffolk, VA | November 3, 2011

1997 Mazda Miata Mx5 is one fantastic sports car. My wife and I purchased this car as a weekend driver. It only has 53,000 original miles on it. Performance and handling are great. Excellent excelleration in all 5 gears. We would buy another one in a heart beat.

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Uses car for Having fun
Does recommend this car


An absolute Gem!

by Miata Enthusiast from Michigan | September 17, 2010

This car is not perfect, but it is amazing. The top qualities seem an impossible combination: Incredibly fun and entertaining to drive, incredibly reliable and durable, and rock-bottom overall ownership costs. This is not a "chick car". This is a serious driver's car for any driver who appreciates that driving is not about drag racing between traffic lights. Handling is amazing but requires care at the limit. The car is also incredibly maneuverable and handy around town, although it really shines on winding roads (or on the race track). All the controls are finely tuned and balanced for proper feel and great feedback. Engine and exhaust sound are wonderful, and the short throw gearshift feels almost like in a formula Ford race car. It is very rare that a car turns out so good that it makes you grin every time you drive it. Only gripes are cowl and steering column shake on bad roads, high senstivitiy to wheel imbalance around 60-70 mph, wind and wind noise at freeway speeds with the top down, and cloth seat upholstry wears through prematurely around the edges. Being rear wheel drive and soft-top it is definitely not a winter car in the snow belt. 1997 is the last year of the 1st generation (with the pop-up headlights). Unlike some other cars of similar vintage, the Miata pop-ups are dead-reliable -you will not find a lazy-eye Miata. Interior is highly functional and ergonomics are great. Timing belt should be replaced around 100K, but if it pops you will get stranded but no engine damage will occur, and replacement is less than 1/2 the cost vs. on any German car. Even corrosion resistance seems good - we have two 1997 midwest-driven examples with absolutely no rust. The bottom line: This car is in a class of one - there is nothing like it. There may be a few sports cars which could be considered better at 2 or 3 times the price, but they are nowhere near 2 or 3 times better.

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Does recommend this car


m-series is special

by 3rd Miata from | May 27, 2009

I have had three Miatas. I realy like the features on the M-Series. Color, chrome wheels, headrest speakers, interior emblems etc.

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Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


Love this car

by nateconq from IN | September 12, 2008

THE GOOD -Feels like it can take all the punishment you give it and more. Engine just won't stop. Very reliable. -Great mileage. I average around 27-28mpg. -Handles almost too good. You can whip it around, stop on a dime, your wish is its command. I've pulled some stuff on the road I couldn't do in almost any other car. -Looks sporty. Black is the best color on this car IMO. -RWD in this tiny thing is too much fun! THE BAD -The Ford 1.8L engine doesn't have much torque in the lower end; car is geared very low to compensate. Having a manual makes this irrelevant because you can rev it up to a where the power kicks in and let it fly. -Shifter is a bit noisy going into 4th gear. Using fully synthetic transmission fluid takes care of this for the most part. -You feel EVERY bump in the road -Going on long trips can make you claustrophobic. Letting down the top solves this though. -Engine noise on the highway is a little loud for some. At 60 mph the tach is at 3000 rpm. I can't help but think the highway mileage would be better if 6th gear was higher. -Very small. This makes it both exhilarating and intimidating such as when you are surrounded by truckzilla. In conclusion, if you are looking for a reliable sports car and want the biggest bang for your buck here you go. But for long road trips I would stick to a roomier car.

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Does recommend this car


Best Car I ever had for the money

by Lizzie from Back in my favorite state - ARIZONA | September 12, 2007

I had the 1997 STO which is basically the same car as the M except that it had a spoiler on it. I put 215,000 miles on it and never had to do anything other than change the battery, tires, oil, and the timing belt and water pump once. It was fun, it moved quickly, responded well, and since I had never driven in snow before, when I moved to WI I ended up on the ditch 3x without ever getting a scratch on her and without her rolling over. I loved that car and I much prefer the look of the 1st generation over the 2nd and do not like the 3rd generation at all. It feels like mazda has decided to concentrate its maket appeal to all those muscle men rather than us cute, pert, intelligent, professional woman who love to drive. If you can get a 1st gen, I recommend you do so now as they have reached the 10 year old mark and if you're deciding between 1st and 2nd gen, if the mileage is low, go with the 1st generation.

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Fun to drive, great looking car, but small inside!

by Convertible Nut from Seattle, WA | June 26, 2007

Love my Mazda Miata STO but it is now for sale. We bought a brand new '07 Saab convertible because it is much roomier. Arguably, the Miata is more fun to drive but comfort ultimately won out.

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    1-10 of 12 reviews

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