100k!

Nelli turned over 100,000 miles last night! If I recall correctly, Nelli turned each 10k milestone (10, 20, 30 . . . 90) either going to an autocross or track day or Miata-club event, including last night.

Nelli is my beloved 1994 Mazda Miata which I purchased new. Ordered April 12, born May 23, and delivered July 13.

Nelli is mostly all original: original paint, interior, seat covers, top, and yes, even back window which is still clear after all these years. There have been some performance and appearance upgrades including Koni Yellow, Racing Beat front swaybar, Racing Beat cat-back exhaust (replacing a Leistritz which had rusted), VooDoo shift knob, and most recently, Pioneer head unit replacing the dead-and-no-longer-fixable MSSS.

This has been one of the best, most fun car I have ever owned. It’s been quite reliable. In those 100,000 miles, besides consumables such as brakes and maintenance items such as timing belts and spark plug wires, failures have been limited to: slave cylinder (2), antenna mast, front hubs (many, many laps at Sebring are brutal!), rear diff / axle seal, battery (3) (each of the Mazda gel batteries lasted over 7 years each! Not bad!), headlight sealed beam, a couple of marking bulbs, airbag module, radiator (preemptively swapped out to avoid the aging cracking these suffer from when the tank’s black plastic turns green), crank angle sensor, front engine mount, and shifter bushings.

There were the occasional bruises fixed by a number of paintless dent repairs. Ironically, most of these were incurred while tucked away in the garage.

Oh, there was the replacement of the steering rack after sliding sideways into a curb, but we can’t count that against the car unless it’s to blame the car for being so much fun at autocross and time trials where this was inflicted on it.

This car has not been abused but it has been driven hard. It has dozens of autocross events and dozens of track days under its belt. It has been enjoyed, top down, on countless beautiful South Florida days. It’s almost a part of the family.

I so enjoy this car! It is one of the best examples ever of an automobile being true to its design criteria. The answer is always: Miata!