Mitsuoka, one of the last bastions of actual raw joy left in the automotive world and the leading transformer of boring Nissan econoboxes into hilariously cartoon-like vintage Jaguars, has announced a new triumph: they’ve used their powerful Mitsuoka Magic to transform a new Miata into a dead ringer for a 1963-1967 C2 Corvette Sting Ray. They call it the Rock Star.
The Rock Star is a special commemorative model for Mitsuoka’s 50th anniversary, and as such they’re only planning to build 50—at least at first. The Rock Star is the third 50th anniversary special edition car Mitsuoka has launched this year, along with a version of their also ND Miata-based Himiko Jag-like roadster, and the “Devilman” edition of their strange, mollusk-like Orochi supercar. The Rock Star will be the first entirely new design of the anniversary editions.
This is also the first absolutely American-inspired Mitsuoka, which usually seems to find inspiration from primarily British and other European cars. (Besides the Orochi. Who’s to say what’s going on there.)
The Rock Star will be available in six very American-named colors: Los Angeles Blue, Chicago Red, New York Black, Cisco Orange, Washington White, and Arizona Yellow. It’s interesting how appropriate those colors seem for the cities they’re named for.
Good work, Mitsuoka.
The basic specs all seem to be right from the current Mazda MX-5, and it looks like only the doors and windshield remain from the original car’s body.
Mitsuoka has done a remarkably good job getting the look of the classic C2 Sting Ray on the Miata’s platform. The proportions are quite close, and while it’s not an exact copy, most of the fundamental design detailing has been translated over, with some clever adaptations, like replacing the pop-up headlamps with small, round projector units set just below the trademark frontal crease.
The twin L-shaped bumper blades are there, as are smaller versions of the side heat-extraction “gills” and even the silver lower side sills.
It’s perfect Mitsuoka—modern guts, classic look, very silly, but a hell of a lot of fun.
The Rock Star starts at 4,688,200円 (yen), which comes to around $41,000 U.S. That’s about twice as much as a new Miata in Japan, but, seeing as how you’re getting an entirely new, limited run body, it doesn’t seem like too bad a deal.
I mean, $41,000 to make your Boomer dad lose his shit? That’s worth it, right?
Never change, Mitsuoka.