We often get E-mails and phone calls from new or potential new Miata owners asking the important question, "What should I buy first?"
For us that is an easy question to answer. On the basis that every new owner wants to protect their Miata, we recommend the following items be considered first. These were the first things we put on our Miata!
The Grill Guard
Just for a moment get down in front of your Miata and look in its mouth (radiator opening). Immediately you'll see just how vulnerable your radiator (and air conditioner radiator) are to flying rocks and other road debris. When I first did it, it was a little scary. That vulnerable area so close to the road with NO protection. We couldn't get grill guards fast enough for our Miatas. Even if you don't install a grill guard you should read the important notice about removing the front tie-down hooks.
Door Sill Guards
Another important area is the door sill area. This area takes a lot of abuse
from shoes and other items being dragged across them. In very short order they
will become scratched and worn. If you bought a used Miata, just take a look and
you'll see what we mean. Door Sill Guards will protect that area and improve the look. Even the new '99+ may need additional protection. Mazda added a modified door sill guard to the '99+, but the standard Mazda sill guards go only about 3/4 way and leave the rest of the sill unprotected. Our new door sill tips take care of the rest of the area. Whatever year your Miata, you may have been lucky enough that your Miata already has the door sill guards that cover the entire sill area. They were included in many of the upgrade packages. If that is the case - you're ahead of the game.
Window Protector for 90-97 cars
You may have already noticed that the rear plastic window is vulnerable to scratches and creases. Most of the scratches can be removed with Meguiar's numbers 10 and 17 and some elbow grease (we don't sell Meguiar's - because it is available almost everywhere). Creases - that's another matter. (Click here for more info on window care) Once your rear window is creased (owners of '99+ don't have to worry about this but see the next item) it is virtually impossible to remove the crease. The best thing to do is to prevent it from happening in the first place. There are many rear window protectors on the market that sandwich the un-zipped plastic windows between two pieces of material. They protect the window for the most part, but you must still zip and unzip your window every time you want to raise or lower your soft top. The Team Miata No-Zip Window Protector works a completely different way. It is easy to use, saves time and offers great protection for your window.
Headlight Savers for '99-05
If a rock hits one of the headlights on your '99-05, is means a trip to your local Mazda dealer, order a new headlight assembly, (wait a few days because they don't carry them in stock) then pay the nice person behind the counter over $200 for the new lens.
Fortunately, you can protect those expensive headlights with a new plastic that will make your headlights almost bullet proof. These 1/16 inch thick plastic shields are very tough, and best of all, invisible when installed. Even on close inspection of the light it is very hard to tell they are installed. We also have these for the factory fog lights. We should have the savers for the 2006 soon.
It beautifies, renews, cleans and preserves. This is the product we've used on our Miatas going on11 years now - it is GREAT stuff. 303 products have long been used by the marine and aviation communities to protect valuable boats and aircraft that must set out in the weather year after year. 303 contains ultraviolet (UV) screening ingredient's that bond with the material protecting it against fading, hardening and cracking due to sunlight, oxidizing gases and ozone. Unlike other products that claim to protect or revitalize, 303 products contain no petroleum distillates, plasticizers or silicone oil that can ultimately lead to deterioration. This really is the best stuff you can use on you Miata. Check out our special starter kit - perfect for the new owner.
Mazda Mud Guards
These are the standard Mazda mud guards. We don't carry them because they are available from any Mazda dealer. They protect your Miata from the rocks that can fly up from your own wheels and damage your paint. They are originally made in black but can be painted to match your Miata. If you haven't purchased your Miata yet - try to get the dealer to include them in the deal.
The Japanese designers don't seem to understand the need of Americans for a cup holder. So when the Miata first came out there were no provisions to hold any cups. That was soon fixed by Mazda with a cup holder that replaces the ash tray. Click here for a photo. The holder works in all '90-'97 models and only costs about $12 from any Mazda dealer. They usually have them in stock. They are also almost always available on eBay. Sometimes for less and sometimes for more.
For '99 and '00 there is a joke of a built-in holder. '01 owners have a sort-of real dual cup holder but it still gets in the way. We searched and search for a good cup holder for these years and finally found one. Click here for a photo It is made by Rubber Queen and is called the Cup-n-Can Holder. It is the best we have found. We don't sell them because they are available at just about any auto parts place like Grand Auto, Pep Boys - even at Target and K-Mart in the auto department. They cost less than $3. (If we were to sell them we'd have to add $5 S&H raising the effective price to $8).