While my Supra takes an extended stay in my father’s garage for engine work, he’s loaned me his Miata. I’ve had the car for a week now and it’s been an interesting experience.
I’ve driven the Miata plenty of times before. It’s a fantastic driver’s car, but living with a car and driving a car are two very different things. My first couple days with the Miata were, to put it lightly, unpleasant.
I live 200 miles away from my parents, so the first thing I had to do was make a three and a half hour drive. The Miata is a small car, but in all the times I’d driven it before, it never really mattered to me before because the Supra is relatively small as well. Except no. Not like this.
When you’re driving on the highway, the Miata is out of its element. It’s designed for twisty and small roads, not cruising on a highway for hours on end. After an hour or so, the cramped cockpit really starts to wear on you. The tires are loud, The wind noise is deafening at over 70mph. I have no room to move. The hard suspension is bouncing me up and down the entire time. I can’t keep my right leg still because the transmission is toasting it when I put it up against the wall, which I have to because the car has no cruise control.
It all sounds like petty complaining now, but after 3 constant hours of it I was nauseous, my head hurt, and I was exhausted.
Now, I’ve always greatly appreciated my Supra. It’s extraordinarily comfortable for what it is and is just an all around great car with no real drawbacks. It’s great fun to drive, the engine note gives me a smile every time I start it up, it’s very comfortable with a deceptively roomy interior, it looks great and like nothing else on the road, and because it’s a fastback with folding seats, you’d be surprised how much stuff I can carry when I need to.
God, I miss the Supra.
Anyway, I’ve come to appreciate all those facets even more now. The Miata isn’t concerned with such frivolities as comfort, ease of use, or accessibility. It’s a small roadster that’s all about the driver, the driving experience, and nothing else.
Despite my absolutely miserable first couple days with the car, I’ve now started coming up with excuses to go out and drive. I’ve taken to driving the Miata instead of the Mazda 3 for menial tasks, both because I still haven’t fully adjusted to the clutch, and because even when doing menial tasks around the neighborhood, it’s a joy.
On the weekend I’ve started going around all my old fun driving routes that I used to frequent with the Supra. It’s a completely different experience with the Miata. It has a crispness and effortlessness I’ve never experienced in any other car, that makes it fun to throw it around any corner I can find.
I could go on, but anything I say would just be a repeat of everything you’ve ever heard anybody say about a Miata. It’s a great drivers car that’s hard to not enjoy anytime you take it out.
Just, stay off the highway.
Which, unfortunately I can’t, because my commute to the office is 30 minutes of highway driving.