Screenshot: Илья Мальцев (YouTube)

Watching a 2018 Mazda Miata RF be driven by a skilled lunatic is always fun, but seeing one whip around in the green and orange quilting livery of Mazda’s famous Le Mans winning rotary-powered 787B is extra excellent.

This clip, which appears to have been made with the help of Prague-based performance driving school and car rental outfit, came into my inbox today from this tiny YouTube channel with no context.


The video is not an official Mazda production and neither is the car, Mazda’s U.S. press office confirmed, but it looks like a damn decent homage livery and the production value is pretty impressive.

Since I know there are a lot of Miata fans on Jalopnik, I’m sure many of you will remember that Mazda did officially make a 787B-styled Miata in 1991, the year the big daddy car won the big race.

Screenshot: Mazda

Or rather, Mazda made 24 of them, which also had a turbocharger boosting the 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine from 115 to 150 horsepower and torque from about 100 ft-lb to north of 150 under the unique (painted on, not a wrap) skin. “19 are still believed to be on the road,” according to Mazda’s Zoom-Zoom Magazine from 2016.


The whole reason anybody cares about this color scheme, of course, is because a race car wearing this livery won the 24 Hours Of Le Mans in 1991. That made Mazda the first Japanese manufacturer to win the race, and with a freaking rotary engine of all things.


Who says rotors can’t be reliable?

Hat tip to Joseph!

Reviews Editor, Jalopnik | 1975 International Scout, 1984 Nissan 300ZX, 1991 Suzuki GSXR, 1998 Mitsubishi Montero, 2005 Acura TL

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