Rate It: Dodge’s Attempt at a Miata-Fighter

Before the founding of FCA in 2014 and before the relaunch of the Challenger in 2008, Dodge was taking aim at small sports cars like the Mazda Miata back in 2007.

Called the Dodge Demon, this little two-seater was planned to be powered by a 2.4-liter inline-four that was said to be good for 172 horsepower and 165 lb.-ft. of torque. (For perspective, the 2007 Mazda Miata was powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder good for 170 horsepower and 140 lb.-ft. of torque.)

That power would then be sent to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual transmission. All that with an estimated curb weight of 2600 pounds.

Perhaps the best way to sum up this concept was from the words of its Principal Interior Designer Dan Zimmermann: “In the manner of timeless British sports cars, the interior of the Dodge Demon is purposely functional, not frivolous. Everything relating to the driving experience is emphasized, while that which is not is made visually secondary.”

At any rate, if this had made it to production, would you have given it a test drive? Do you think it would have been a worthy contender against the Miata, as well as the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky?

We were even able to track down the original press release, which can be read here.

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Comments
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Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Reader
7/23/20 10:52 a.m.

I like it. Want to know why they didn't build it. 

Of course I own a Miata and have had lots of British Roadsters in the past. 

Mr_Asa
Mr_Asa Dork
7/23/20 10:54 a.m.

Looks like a 350Z was molested by a Charger.

Ian F (Forum Supporter)
Ian F (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/23/20 10:54 a.m.

While the emotional part of me wishes it had been built, the rational part of me understands why it wasn't.  The bean counters likely looked at current Miata sales figures at the time and even with a healthy amount of parts bin sharing, simply couldn't make the numbers add up. Something GM failed to do with the Solstice/Sky platform. 

ProDarwin
ProDarwin UltimaDork
7/23/20 10:59 a.m.
Mr_Asa said:

Looks like a 350Z was molested by a Charger.

It looks like someone tried to put a charger body kit on a solstice

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
7/23/20 11:01 a.m.

I don't hate it, and I like the idea.. but the sky/solstice were quickly retired as others have said.  I think the miata struggles to get about double digit htousand sales numbers.. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/23/20 11:05 a.m.

The Miata only makes sense to Mazda if you realize it's their halo car. Did Dodge have a platform they could use for this thing, or was it going to require a lot of engineering?

 

Miata sales in the US (note that it does well in other countries):
2005    9,801
2006    16,897
2007    15,075
2008    10,977
2009    7,917
2010    6,380
2011    5,674
2012    6,739
2013    5,780
2014    4,745
2015    8,591
2016    9,465
2017    11,294
2018    8,971
2019    7,753
2020    4,320

NickD
NickD UltimaDork
7/23/20 11:06 a.m.

This thing with the Caliber SRT-4 engine would have been a spicy unit. And if it had survived to today, Dodge would have found a way to cram a Hellcat motor in it somehow. The one that I was said didn't come to pass was the Chrysler Firepower, which was a swanky Chrysler sport coupe on the Viper chassis with 6.1L Hemi motivation. Woulda been a damn sight better than the stupid Crossfire.

Ian F (Forum Supporter)
Ian F (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/23/20 11:08 a.m.

In reply to Fueled by Caffeine :

My rough understanding is the Miata is a bit of a fluke.  The first generation sold so well and was so profitable, it has sort of paid for every revision built since.  Or made it so each generation has less amortized engineering costs to cover, despite the relatively low sales.  Plus, the platforms tend to stick around for quite awhile.  The ND still looks like a current car, despite being sold 5 years ago (my ex- picked up her Launch Edition 5 years ago around this time). It doesn't really look dated yet, so I can see it sticking around for at least another 3 years.  That's a good amount of time for a model to spread out engineering costs.

volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter)
volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
7/23/20 11:09 a.m.

Put a Hemi in it.

Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Reader
7/23/20 11:14 a.m.

Putting a Hellcat in it would make it a totally different animal. Sort of like a modern day Shelby Cobra. 

Nobody makes anything like that today. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/23/20 11:14 a.m.
Ian F (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to Fueled by Caffeine :

My rough understanding is the Miata is a bit of a fluke.  The first generation sold so well and was so profitable, it has sort of paid for every revision built since.  Or made it so each generation has less amortized engineering costs to cover, despite the relatively low sales.  Plus, the platforms tend to stick around for quite awhile.  The ND still looks like a current car, despite being sold 5 years ago (my ex- picked up her Launch Edition 5 years ago around this time). It doesn't really look dated yet, so I can see it sticking around for at least another 3 years.  That's a good amount of time for a model to spread out engineering costs.

Mazda will not comment, but I have been told to expect a similar livespan for the ND platform as previous generations. So yeah, we have another few years to go.

It is amazing that a small little automaker like Mazda is willing to engineer a one-off platform (it's their only RWD car!) for a $25k convertible. GM does a one-off platform for the C8 and everyone's amazed that it only costs twice that much. But it's what defines their brand. There is no amortized engineering from the first platform or even between the NC and ND. The NC benefited from the RX8, the NB was basically an updated NA.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/23/20 11:15 a.m.
Snowdoggie said:

Putting a Hellcat in it would make it a totally different animal. Sort of like a modern day Shelby Cobra. 

Nobody makes anything like that today. 

How cool would that be?

 

volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter)
volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
7/23/20 11:16 a.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

" It is amazing that a small little automaker like Mazda is willing to engineer a one-off platform (it's their only RWD car!) for a $25k convertible. "

If they'd had a $25k wagon on the same platform I'd have bought that instead of my 3.  And I got the 3 for $16k.

If they seriously want to be a BMW fighter, they need to out-BMW BMW. 

SKJSS (formerly Klayfish)
SKJSS (formerly Klayfish) PowerDork
7/23/20 11:17 a.m.

I don't mind it, but I think its' nose was too big for its' face.

ebelements
ebelements Reader
7/23/20 11:19 a.m.

Love the idea, but the mid 2000s viper nose/squared off TT rear combo makes this look like one of those Chinese domestic market vis ID theft abominations.

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
7/23/20 11:26 a.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

I hear you.  I wouldn't call the miata a loss leader as a small brand like mazda has little cushion for such a thing... but it does set the brand image, especially with the RX models gone.  

Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Reader
7/23/20 11:27 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:
Snowdoggie said:

Putting a Hellcat in it would make it a totally different animal. Sort of like a modern day Shelby Cobra. 

Nobody makes anything like that today. 

How cool would that be?

 

OK. You guys build V8 Miatas, but they are not exactly production cars. How much for the turnkey one with the 700 hp LS3? 

Ian F (Forum Supporter)
Ian F (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/23/20 11:30 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:
Snowdoggie said:

Putting a Hellcat in it would make it a totally different animal. Sort of like a modern day Shelby Cobra. 

Nobody makes anything like that today. 

How cool would that be?

 

And before someone complains about how much a LS3ND costs, bear in mind the Cobra base price was around $6600 in 1963 - or around $55K in today's money. It was not a cheap car. Especially considering how bare-bones it was, even for 1963.

Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Reader
7/23/20 11:33 a.m.
Ian F (Forum Supporter) said:
Keith Tanner said:
Snowdoggie said:

Putting a Hellcat in it would make it a totally different animal. Sort of like a modern day Shelby Cobra. 

Nobody makes anything like that today. 

How cool would that be?

 

And before someone complains about how much a LS3ND costs, bear in mind the Cobra base price was around $6600 in 1963 - or around $55K in today's money. It was not a cheap car. Especially considering how bare-bones it was, even for 1963.

Compared to the price of an original Cobra today at whatever classic car auction you can get one from,  it's probably a still a bargain. 

JesseWolfe
JesseWolfe Reader
7/23/20 11:33 a.m.

This dodge looks pretty good considering, though the rear end treatment looks like an R8 kit car.

Yavuz
Yavuz Reader
7/23/20 11:45 a.m.

I liked the Demon concept, but if you go back a few more years - I was completely on board with the Dodge Razor concept. It used the 2.4 turbo out of the Neon SRT-4, weighed under 2500lbs, and was supposed to have a target price of under $15k. I doubt they could have actually sold these for 15k, but then again - the SRT-4 was only $19,999 when it came out. I bought an SRT-4 new back then and would have been first in line to put a deposit down on this thing if it ever went into production.

 

Dave M (Forum Supporter)
Dave M (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
7/23/20 11:57 a.m.

I'm going to hazard a guess and say that the convertible, if it made it to production, would have been a total POS and a blast to drive.

Granted, my Solstice was also a total POS and I loved it.  Small roadsters are the beeeeest.

mblommel
mblommel Dork
7/23/20 12:01 p.m.
Yavuz said:

I liked the Demon concept, but if you go back a few more years - I was completely on board with the Dodge Razor concept. It used the 2.4 turbo out of the Neon SRT-4, weighed under 2500lbs, and was supposed to have a target price of under $15k. I doubt they could have actually sold these for 15k, but then again - the SRT-4 was only $19,999 when it came out. I bought an SRT-4 new back then and would have been first in line to put a deposit down on this thing if it ever went into production.

 

Beat me to it. I was salivating at the prospect of them producing this. At the time MR2 spyders were selling for $30k with dealer markup, so I was hoping for a cheaper and much faster alternative. 

Vajingo
Vajingo New Reader
7/23/20 12:05 p.m.
Yavuz said:

It's like a Chrysler 300 tried to snake swallow a MR2 spider 

KyAllroad (Jeremy) (Forum Supporter)
KyAllroad (Jeremy) (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
7/23/20 12:07 p.m.

It's just that the market for small "toy" cars is pretty small.  Very few people are buying 2 seat convertibles as their primary transportation so you either have buyers with so much money they don't care what it costs or people buying used and cheap.  I can't imagine taking on a car payment for a new Miata, and I can't imagine I'm that unusual.

Ian F (Forum Supporter)
Ian F (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/23/20 12:08 p.m.
Dave M (Forum Supporter) said:

I'm going to hazard a guess and say that the convertible, if it made it to production, would have been a total POS and a blast to drive.

Granted, my Solstice was also a total POS and I loved it.  Small roadsters are the beeeeest.

True... although if I want to drive a total POS convertible that I love, I have a Spitfire. 

NOHOME
NOHOME MegaDork
7/23/20 12:18 p.m.

It is RWD, so I woulda at least looked. At that time I had already been disappointed by the Fiero as it extruded it self onto the market as an inside-out chevette, and had my hopes for a proper sport scar dashed by the Lotus going FWD. I was then saved by the Miata.

 

What I cant get from the images is any sense of proportions. Is that thing big or small compared to a Miata?

 

Pete

Dave M (Forum Supporter)
Dave M (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
7/23/20 12:35 p.m.
Ian F (Forum Supporter) said:
Dave M (Forum Supporter) said:

I'm going to hazard a guess and say that the convertible, if it made it to production, would have been a total POS and a blast to drive.

Granted, my Solstice was also a total POS and I loved it.  Small roadsters are the beeeeest.

True... although if I want to drive a total POS convertible that I love, I have a Spitfire. 

The ultimate POS convertible!

chandler
chandler PowerDork
7/23/20 1:31 p.m.

Poor ChryCo.

Ian F (Forum Supporter)
Ian F (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/23/20 1:59 p.m.
NOHOME said:

It is RWD, so I woulda at least looked. At that time I had already been disappointed by the Fiero as it extruded it self onto the market as an inside-out chevette, and had my hopes for a proper sport scar dashed by the Lotus going FWD. I was then saved by the Miata.

 

What I cant get from the images is any sense of proportions. Is that thing big or small compared to a Miata?

 

Pete

Not sure... does anyone know where the prototype ended up and if it can be seen by the public? Probably buried and collecting dust in a FCA warehouse somewhere. 

jwagner (Forum Supporter)
jwagner (Forum Supporter) Reader
7/23/20 2:26 p.m.

The real magic in a Miata is the driving experience, and Mazda has gotten that right in every generation of the car.  The car is built to drive, the automotive version of the architectural Form Follows Function.  Seems that it's not easy to do that, the car geeks usually lose to the bean counters and marketing.

 

The shortcomings of the Miata are easy to fix:  Add power to your liking, change the handling/ride ratio to your preference, etc..  But I haven't had another car as steeped in the Jinba Ittai attitude as a Miata and you can't bolt that on.  (god, I sound like a Mazda commercial...). I wonder if something coming out of Dodge might have been built that way.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
7/23/20 2:30 p.m.
KyAllroad (Jeremy) (Forum Supporter) said:

It's just that the market for small "toy" cars is pretty small.  Very few people are buying 2 seat convertibles as their primary transportation so you either have buyers with so much money they don't care what it costs or people buying used and cheap.  I can't imagine taking on a car payment for a new Miata, and I can't imagine I'm that unusual.

Or like myself and my lady, we are DINK's. 

So I can have a Miata and then she can drive the "normal" car my '18 Mazda 3.

nyascona75
nyascona75 New Reader
7/23/20 2:31 p.m.

If they would build it, a lot of us would buy it.

 

 

 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
7/23/20 2:33 p.m.
NickD said:

This thing with the Caliber SRT-4 engine would have been a spicy unit. And if it had survived to today, Dodge would have found a way to cram a Hellcat motor in it somehow. The one that I was said didn't come to pass was the Chrysler Firepower, which was a swanky Chrysler sport coupe on the Viper chassis with 6.1L Hemi motivation. Woulda been a damn sight better than the stupid Crossfire.

Would have been, unlikely to have sold well. Look at the Sky/Solstice twins, but I guess their parent companies were also on the way out. 

I'd love to see Mazda do a real, honest-to-Hades ND Mazdaspeed.

Floating Doc (Forum Supporter)
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) UberDork
7/23/20 2:52 p.m.
Snowdoggie said:
Ian F (Forum Supporter) said:
Keith Tanner said:
Snowdoggie said:

Putting a Hellcat in it would make it a totally different animal. Sort of like a modern day Shelby Cobra. 

Nobody makes anything like that today. 

How cool would that be?

 

And before someone complains about how much a LS3ND costs, bear in mind the Cobra base price was around $6600 in 1963 - or around $55K in today's money. It was not a cheap car. Especially considering how bare-bones it was, even for 1963.

Compared to the price of an original Cobra today at whatever classic car auction you can get one from,  it's probably a still a bargain. 

That makes me wonder what a clean, well cared for, low mileage ND with a documented Flyin Miata V8 swap will sell for on Bring a Trailer in 2070.

I'll bet a lot.

Shaun
Shaun Dork
7/23/20 3:02 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

The Miata only makes sense to Mazda if you realize it's their halo car. Did Dodge have a platform they could use for this thing, or was it going to require a lot of engineering?

 

Miata sales in the US (note that it does well in other countries):
2005    9,801
2006    16,897
2007    15,075
2008    10,977
2009    7,917
2010    6,380
2011    5,674
2012    6,739
2013    5,780
2014    4,745
2015    8,591
2016    9,465
2017    11,294
2018    8,971
2019    7,753
2020    4,320

Those numbers really surprised me!  As being very low-  I did a quick search on the global numbers and they helped me see some sort of chance for Mazda to perhaps break even on the platform but  they took a big risk redesigning a car they were selling 15-12k of annually globally. That is a ton of dedicated tooling managerial  sales  support and infrastructure resources to devote to a product you are going sell 30k of.   Japanese investors must have different profitability expectations than US firms.

 

KGMonteith
KGMonteith New Reader
7/23/20 3:03 p.m.

In reply to z31maniac :

Check out what Joe McClughan at DynotronicsTuning.com has done with a bolt-on turbo on the NC -- 350+ hp on a stock 2.0 engine, for less than $4K.  

rustomatic
rustomatic New Reader
7/23/20 3:06 p.m.

Just no.  That company has made quite enough rental cars.  Vomit is nearly cresting the esophagus.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
7/23/20 3:09 p.m.
KGMonteith said:

In reply to z31maniac :

Check out what Joe McClughan at DynotronicsTuning.com has done with a bolt-on turbo on the NC -- 350+ hp on a stock 2.0 engine, for less than $4K.  

My bad, that should have said ND. Fixed.

At that point it's gonna need a clutch and other cooling mods if you want to do anything other than go to the grocery store and back.

Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Reader
7/23/20 3:14 p.m.
2004 9.356
2003 10.920
2002 14.392
2001 16.486
2000 18.299
1999 17.738
1998 19.845
1997 17.218
1996 18.408
1995 20.174
1994 21.400
1993 21.588
1992 24.964
1991 31.240
1990 35.944
1989 23.052
Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Reader
7/23/20 3:20 p.m.

The chart above is Miata sales for the US starting from 1989. As you can see they sold a lot more of them in the first 10 years, meaning there are more NAs than anything else. They sold around 35,000 of them in 1990. They sold just under 8,000 of them last year. What other company would continue to make a model selling less than half what they used to sell 20 years ago? 

Warlock
Warlock New Reader
7/23/20 3:23 p.m.

Wasn't this based on the second-generation Mercedes SLK platform, and part of the reason it died was because Chrysler and Daimler divorced in 2007?  

The problem with coveting a production Demon would have been its parentage.  Chrysler makes interesting cars, but you never quite know how they're going to hang together.  Neons were great, if you were looking for a 1975 Datsun with more power.  I was really interested in the Alfa-based Dart for my daughter when they brought it over, but after test driving one, it just felt a little rickety...ended up buying her a Ford Fiesta instead, which felt much more solid (and proved it when some oxygen thief hit her several years later).  I've put almost 300,000 miles on an NB Miata, without much concern about how hard I've used it...I can't imagine getting that out of a Chrysler.  

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
7/23/20 5:07 p.m.

Brand identity is the worst thing to happen to cars not named BMW.  Instead of a manufacturer making one ugly car, they make them all ugly.

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
7/23/20 5:43 p.m.

I like it.  I have never been a fan of the way a miata looks.  I actually like the looks of the Demon posted by Colin alot better than a miata.  Kind of looks like a mini DB9 or a much more modern Jag just at 3/4 scale.  If that had been made in 2007-08 or 09 that would have been game changer design wise.  

ProDarwin
ProDarwin UltimaDork
7/23/20 5:58 p.m.
z31maniac said:
KGMonteith said:

In reply to z31maniac :

Check out what Joe McClughan at DynotronicsTuning.com has done with a bolt-on turbo on the NC -- 350+ hp on a stock 2.0 engine, for less than $4K.  

My bad, that should have said ND. Fixed.

At that point it's gonna need a clutch and other cooling mods if you want to do anything other than go to the grocery store and back.

Does the engine hold?  If so, I would agree, sooner or later it will need everything from the transmission back :P

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
7/23/20 6:47 p.m.

In reply to ProDarwin :

You know, I'm not sure what the stock 2.0s are good for? I really wanted to Rotrex it, but the only kit is apparently garbage.

tgschmid
tgschmid
7/23/20 6:49 p.m.

In reply to Colin Wood :

This is one ugly (but still cute) little puppy. Put in the SRT4 2.4 turbo that was available back then and go dog go! Too bad bean counters, executives and corporate attorneys get in the way of some really good ideas. There is so much awesome car guy talent pent up in our domestic manufacturers. It is a shame that they are only 'minimally' released on relatively lame offerings like Mustang and Camaro. Perhaps a bit more latitude was garnered on Vettes and GT40s (the latter being unobtainium for the average bloke). Yup, I want an affordable domestic mini rocket. Where is the domestic Civic R type, WRX STI, or Golf R??? 'Murca' has the brains and capability but is mired in bureaucratic pooh... hell Ford doesn't even make cars anymore (except for the Mustang) ... standard shift is all but dead and, if available, it is a 'premium' option. Performance is at an all time high, but it is not a good time for 'real' car guys. I'll chime out now and go drive my torque steering nightmare 1996 Dodge Omni GLHS and reminisce on the 'good ol' days.

chada75
chada75 Reader
7/23/20 7:05 p.m.

In reply to Yavuz :

Looks better than the big nose thing.

Vigo (Forum Supporter)
Vigo (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/23/20 10:18 p.m.

I will never stop mourning the Dodge Copperhead. Never.

 

mad_machine (Forum Supporter)
mad_machine (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/23/20 10:25 p.m.
volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to Keith Tanner :

" It is amazing that a small little automaker like Mazda is willing to engineer a one-off platform (it's their only RWD car!) for a $25k convertible. "

If they'd had a $25k wagon on the same platform I'd have bought that instead of my 3.  And I got the 3 for $16k.

If they seriously want to be a BMW fighter, they need to out-BMW BMW. 

At the rate that BMW is moving away from the Sport in "Sports sedan" Mazda could have done really well for itself with a RWD mazda 3 sedan and wagon

volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter)
volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
7/24/20 5:54 a.m.
mad_machine (Forum Supporter) said:
volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to Keith Tanner :

" It is amazing that a small little automaker like Mazda is willing to engineer a one-off platform (it's their only RWD car!) for a $25k convertible. "

If they'd had a $25k wagon on the same platform I'd have bought that instead of my 3.  And I got the 3 for $16k.

If they seriously want to be a BMW fighter, they need to out-BMW BMW. 

At the rate that BMW is moving away from the Sport in "Sports sedan" Mazda could have done really well for itself with a RWD mazda 3 sedan and wagon

Glad someone else agrees with me on this.  The redesigned 3 has been a sales diaster.  Hell, small car sales in general aren't so hot- but also some of the small makes are getting out- Focus, Fit, Dart...possibly more to come.  If Mazda's going to compete in that space, why not build something unique?  The 3's proportions already lend itself to a RWD layout.  Square it off, give it some better visibility and actual usable cargo area, make the back seat not a time-out place for rotten youths, stick the Miata platform under it, and give it a base price around 25k with a 6 speed.  I might even trade in my 2018 3 Sport for it. 

EDIT: if they really want to be saucy, they could offer an electric variant, and compete with Tesla, too...

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
7/24/20 8:10 a.m.

Isn't Mazda planning an I6, RWD Mazda 6?

Unfortunately, with cute ute's not taking much of a mileage penalty, sporty cars are going to be fewer and fewer. 

SO START BUYING NEW YA CHEAP ASSES!

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy MegaDork
7/24/20 8:51 a.m.

That corporate Dodge nose ruined pretty much every car to which it was applied.  I understand the idea of an image, but that one does not work for me.

volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter)
volvoclearinghouse (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
7/24/20 8:56 a.m.
z31maniac said:

Isn't Mazda planning an I6, RWD Mazda 6?

Unfortunately, with cute ute's not taking much of a mileage penalty, sporty cars are going to be fewer and fewer. 

SO START BUYING NEW YA CHEAP ASSES!

Believe me, it's been on my radar.  Manual wagon version and I'm sold.

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UberDork
7/24/20 10:42 a.m.
Vigo (Forum Supporter) said:

I will never stop mourning the Dodge Copperhead. Never.

 

Came here to post this. 

Also I think a lot of you are failing to do research on the Sky/Solstice death. Remember when GM needed a bailout back in 2008? Remember they killed off a bunch of brands such as Pontiac and Saturn? Remember Penske tried to buy the tooling and rights to the platform and GM say "nah." Instead of rebranding it as a Cadillac or a Chevy - GM just decided to kill it instead. Some bean counter probably said "It pulls away too many sales from the Corvette anyways"

Chrysler pumped out a lot of cool concepts back in the day. I've always enjoyed them for the fact that they've deviated from the norms (prior to Daimler and FCA mergers). Now its just "let's see if we can fit this monster engine in this 20+ year old E-class chassis.....oh wait we know we can hahahaha.....Make one with 800hp now!!!"

 

AaronT
AaronT New Reader
7/24/20 11:16 a.m.
KyAllroad (Jeremy) (Forum Supporter) said:

It's just that the market for small "toy" cars is pretty small.  Very few people are buying 2 seat convertibles as their primary transportation so you either have buyers with so much money they don't care what it costs or people buying used and cheap.  I can't imagine taking on a car payment for a new Miata, and I can't imagine I'm that unusual.

That's the rub. Manuals kind of suck in stop-and-go commuting, especially if you have a lightweight flywheel. 
 
If COVID doesn't eat my job I'll be buying a house next year and after that I'll have more room in the budget for toys. I could sell my NB Miata and get a new or newer one. But I could also keep the NB and buy a tow pig and a 4-stroke racing kart for similar money. If I make it to the track 10-15 days a year I can log 2-3000 laps a year and participate in real wheel-to-wheel racing. At that point it's real hard to justify a new Miata unless I aggressively jump the pay rungs.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
7/24/20 12:24 p.m.
DirtyBird222 said:

Also I think a lot of you are failing to do research on the Sky/Solstice death. Remember when GM needed a bailout back in 2008? Remember they killed off a bunch of brands such as Pontiac and Saturn? 

I think I was the only person to bring it up, but I guess you didn't read the sentence where I said:

"Look at the Sky/Solstice twins, but I guess their parent companies were also on the way out. "

 

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UberDork
7/24/20 12:53 p.m.
z31maniac said:
DirtyBird222 said:

Also I think a lot of you are failing to do research on the Sky/Solstice death. Remember when GM needed a bailout back in 2008? Remember they killed off a bunch of brands such as Pontiac and Saturn? 

I think I was the only person to bring it up, but I guess you didn't read the sentence where I said:

"Look at the Sky/Solstice twins, but I guess their parent companies were also on the way out. "

 

Nah I juts generally skip over your comments since you backed out on sending me a six pack. 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
7/24/20 1:02 p.m.
DirtyBird222 said:
z31maniac said:
DirtyBird222 said:

Also I think a lot of you are failing to do research on the Sky/Solstice death. Remember when GM needed a bailout back in 2008? Remember they killed off a bunch of brands such as Pontiac and Saturn? 

I think I was the only person to bring it up, but I guess you didn't read the sentence where I said:

"Look at the Sky/Solstice twins, but I guess their parent companies were also on the way out. "

 

Nah I juts generally skip over your comments since you backed out on sending me a six pack. 

That was completely unintentional on my part so I apologize for forgetting, email is the same as the screen name at gmail. shoot me your addy

WonkoTheSane (Forum Supporter)
WonkoTheSane (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
7/24/20 2:01 p.m.

I'm just really, really hoping that Mazda throws some interesting colors on the Miata.  I'm going to be in the market for a (new) ND in about a year, and I'm really not feeling excited about their palette.   Pllllleeeeasse let them release a BRG & tan 2021! 

That orange one they had was awesome, but also unobtainable without a horrific markup.  The only ones I saw that a normal person could get ahold of were automatics..

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/24/20 4:18 p.m.

The orange doesn't really look that good in person - the intensity of the color blows out the surface detailing. The 1992 yellows had the same problem. A metallic orange would have been more effective, like the (expensive!) Chrome Orange from Lotus.

But I'm with you. I really don't understand why the ND doesn't get a good color pallette. Even BRG is boring, let's get some fun blues and bright greens.

Kreb (Forum Supporter)
Kreb (Forum Supporter) UberDork
7/24/20 4:39 p.m.

Besides the prominent proboscis, it simply doesn't make sense to bring an inferior American car to market with practically the same specs as the Miata. Miata owns a tiny market.  If they were to do something with super-cool coupe styling, or a lot more power, or ideally both, then at least they'd have a fighting chance at success. Think Solstice GXP coupe.

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) PowerDork
7/24/20 5:10 p.m.

I feel like the stylists only really put in the time on the Demon concept's front end styling and by the time they got to the rear quarterpanel & wheelarch situation they said "eh, just put something round back there, it'll be fine".  I imagine this would have been built off of the mk1 Merc SLK chassis like the Crossfire was which wouldn't help in the weight, pace, or cost departments. 

Maybe this would have worked if it like the latest Fiat 124 Spyder, only based around the NC MX-5. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/24/20 5:29 p.m.

About that 124 Spyder...looks like there hasn't been one sold since March. Or FCA just isn't reporting sales.

Year    sold
2016    2,475
2017    4,478
2018    3,515
2019    2,646
2020    96

If you want an alternative NC Miata, the Ibuki was a pretty interesting concept. You can see some of the watered-down styling in the first NC, but it would be really fun to recreate it. It's an actual car, not a rendering.

WonkoTheSane (Forum Supporter)
WonkoTheSane (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
7/24/20 6:21 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

The orange doesn't really look that good in person - the intensity of the color blows out the surface detailing. The 1992 yellows had the same problem. A metallic orange would have been more effective, like the (expensive!) Chrome Orange from Lotus.

But I'm with you. I really don't understand why the ND doesn't get a good color pallette. Even BRG is boring, let's get some fun blues and bright greens.

I'm disappointed to hear you didn't like the orange :( I know you're not a fan of BRG, but I'm in love with it on an Elise, which I think has similar proportions an lines (although a mx-5 is not as extreme), so I'd totally buy one!

I'm in the minority, probably, but mettalic viper green would be great as well, but with black interior, not tan.

 

But yeah, I love the phantom blue Mica that my RX-8 is, for example.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/24/20 6:30 p.m.

I think BRG is boring on an Elise as well :) But it'll sell well, because I am definitely not in the majority here. I've been told by Mazda insiders that the ND doesn't wear it well, but seriously guys, it's the color of money. Maybe we'll get one in 2021, because there was a 1991 and a 2001 in BRG.

Lotus does color really well. I always go to the Elise color pallette when I'm looking for a custom Miata color and the ND Miata is very similar in surface treatment to the Elise. They do spend the money on paint with good highlights - Chili Red is spectacular in person and impossible to capture in photographs.

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
7/27/20 12:29 p.m.

I found this and seeing it actually on the road really makes me like it.

 

 

Mazdax605
Mazdax605 PowerDork
7/27/20 1:46 p.m.
Yavuz said:

I liked the Demon concept, but if you go back a few more years - I was completely on board with the Dodge Razor concept. It used the 2.4 turbo out of the Neon SRT-4, weighed under 2500lbs, and was supposed to have a target price of under $15k. I doubt they could have actually sold these for 15k, but then again - the SRT-4 was only $19,999 when it came out. I bought an SRT-4 new back then and would have been first in line to put a deposit down on this thing if it ever went into production.

 

Nothing to add, but happy to see Yavuz posting again. We haven't seen you around these parts in quite some time.

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