I Somehow Like These Custom-Bodied Mazda Miatas A Whole Lot More

It seems most of us err on the side of “no thanks” when it comes to Mazda Miatas re-bodied to look like classic Ford Mustangs. But the Miata is a versatile platform with many good qualities, and now a reader has pointed me toward a Miata-based customization project I find much more compelling.

Advertisement

You may have heard of Jim Simpson’s Simpson Design, but until this afternoon I had not, and now I’m kind of a fan. He’s a former Ferrari design apprentice whose Washington-based shop’s been around for decades, and these days they turn Miatas into these Zagato- and Bertone-inspired custom kit cars.

They happen to be quite lovely. That green one up top apes the Aston Martin DB4 Zagato and the lower one’s clearly a salute to the Ferrari 250 SWB, though I’d say they stand on their own. Not bad for a Miata as a base.

Advertisement

Also! In addition to the customized interiors, several of them even have fixed roofs. Those are pretty elusive even on normal Miatas!

Advertisement

Simpson’s website says his process involves 3D modeling, building 1/24 scale mockups, working with a custom wood buck, then shaping steel, fiberglass and interior to the buyer’s exact specs. The Gentleman Racer says the completed car will run you about $25,000, which is really not bad either.

Advertisement

Somehow, I think these work better than the Mustang customs, probably because Simpson’s Italian and English-inspired designs jibe much better with the Miata’s own roadster heritage. Good as it is, the Mustang was never meant to be a pure, two-seat, lightweight roadster.

And hey! Hardtop roofs! What’s not to like there? I can think of far more questionable things to do with your Miata than these.

Advertisement

Hat tip to Frank!

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Share This Story

About the author

Patrick George

Editor-in-Chief at Jalopnik. 2002 Toyota 4Runner.