M2 Incorporated was created as a subsidiary of Mazda in an effort to create some nice enthusiast models. The “CobraSter” concept was the biggest departure from the base Miata of the time but the models that actually got produced and sold were interesting in their own right. The 3 models that made it to the showroom offered a mixture of performance upgrades and appearance improvements which make them highly sought after in Japan. Many of these models will soon hit the 25 year mark so we might start seeing them on our shores as well.
The M2-1001 was the first model to be released from M2 in 1991. It was nicknamed the “Clubman” and 300 examples were produced. The 1001 received some appearance upgrades to give it a more aggressive look along with functional touches such as the smaller mirrors and a rollbar. The 1001 received a bump in power due higher compression pistons, an aggressive camshaft and an improved intake and exhaust system. The configuration produced 130 horsepower and 109 pound-feet of torque. The 1001 was a big hit and orders quickly surpassed the limited production run so in the end M2 had to create a lottery system to decide who could buy one. The M2 started out at around $26,500 and went as high as $34,000 after the lottery which was more than the Toyota Supra cost at the time.
The M2-1002 was an appearance model that featured a classier interior and was nicknamed the “Vintage” roadster. It did not feature any of the engine or functional upgrades of the 1001 and was priced about $3000 less. The 1002 was trimmed with wood and ivory leather on the interior and the only other large change was a different looking front bumper.
The 1002 was set to have a production run of 300 units just like the previous model but due to the combined factors of the high price and the drop in the Japanese economy only 100 units were sold. The remainder of the interiors were used a few years later for various limited production models.
The M2-1028 was a sporty model that was useful on the street as well as the track. It was the last model to be sold by M2 Inc. and had a run of 300 units. It was nicknamed the “Street Competiton” model and it started out with a modified version of the 1.8 liter BP engine that put out 140 horsepower. This model lost around 50 pounds of weight compared to the standard Miata by cutting down the center console and losing the radio as well as using a lighter trunk and wheels. It also received a custom steering wheel, custom mirrors, and lighter racing seats.
The folding top was dropped in favor of using an aluminum roll cage that came with a tarp that could be stretched over and used as a roof. There was also a lightweight fiberglass/plastic hardtop with a Plexiglass rear window that could be purchased. We received a slightly watered down version of the 1028 in the United States in the form of the R-Package Miata.
[M2-1001 Title Image – Minkara] [M2-1001 Dash Image – Minkara] [M2-1002 Images – Minkara] [M2-1028 Dash Image – Minkara] [M2-1028 Exterior – Minkara]
[Source: Mazda MX-5 Miata: The Book of the World’s Favourite Sportscar By Brian Long and Takao Kijima]