What MX5 have I got ?


I have a 1998 MX5 Mk2 roadster 1.8 in dark metallic blue with 6 speed gearbox, cloth interior with 1 piece seatbacks, a bodykit, front strut brace and fully adjustable suspension.  It was first registered in the UK in 2003 as an SE on an R plate after being imported (I believe) from Japan, and then bought by my dad about 4 years ago as the second UK owner.  My problem is that I havent been able to find anything that tells me whether its a standard car with aftermarket or dealer/factory fitted accessories or if its a special edition.  It doesn’t seem to match any of the special editions I’ve read about although I’ve seen lots of pictures of US cars with similar bodykits and colour.  Its got 16" wheels which were originally polished but we have since powder coated.  Can anyone please give me any details on what the car might be as its driving me nuts not knowing ?  Any info would be greatly appreciated.


 Very nice Thumbs up Reminds me of my old Sport!

Being a 6 speed R reg import id guess its a RS but dont take my word for it. Im sure the experts will be along soon enough.

RS with factory body kit (factory or dealer fitted), aftermarket wheels.

G’day mate Welcome to the forum–

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Nice car. Agree with above, looks like an RS to me. Your not far from me, will look out for you.





Thumbs up

I Agree


(pedant mode: It’s a Mazda Roadster RS  not an MX-5) 

I Agree and I think the body kit is called an Aero Kit, same as on my VS, but I have rear spoiler


Such a nice car given its age!!Big Smile

Guys, thanks for the advice and the compliments.  I found a post showing that the model designation is on the sticker in the door jam and I’ve just checked and it says RS special edition so thats confirmed.

Piecing together this and other information I can find on the RS the spec should be as follows:

  • 6 speed gearbox (check)
  • Torsen LSD (3.9:1) (didn't know that although had always wondered if it might)
  • Strut brace (check)
  • Lightweight flywheel (is this correct ?)
  • 145 bhp (bp5A head - ?)
  • Twighlight Blue metallic (RS colour and the desciption seems to fit)
  • Nardi steering wheel and gearnob (check)
  • Bose speakers (got them but not sure if they were optional or standard on the RS)
  • Driver and passenger airbags (check)
  • Bilstein shock absorbers (mine has fully adjustable - ride height and damping, but dont think they are Bilstein)
  • Cloth interior (my interior is the same as those in the pictures I've now seen of other RS's)
  • Mazda aero bodykit either factory or dealer fitted (not standard on RS).
  • No ABS (I understand this was an option on the RS)
  • Air conditioning
  • PAS
Any comments on the above would be welcome.

 Exact same spec as mine, but I’ve still got the Bose head unit (std on RS)

The Mk2 RS wasn’t actually a special edition, at least not as we understand it. It was a regular trim level in the Mazda line-up, roughly equivlanet to (in range positioning, but with a superior spec) to the iS in the UK.

 i seen this for sale on ebay last week



you have the spec and model sorted so you can sell it properly :)

Lovely example of whatever s/he is
Welcome aboard, Jezza Waving

you can’t go far wrong spending 2.5K on a motor like this with 30,000 miles on the clock!! Pretty rare mileage that!!

Unless the car came with a BIMTA certificate, I would not assume the mileage is correct. Cars imported by BIMTA members came with certificates attesting to the mileage in Japan, as recorded at the auction. Generally,  cars in Japan seem to do 5-10k kms per year.

Hmm good point! I didn’t realise there were certificates like this for grey imports…handy to know!!