Celebrating 30 Years of the MX-5 Miata begins with celebrating our fans and their stories. We asked owners and enthusiasts from around the country to submit their MX-5 stories to celebrate the debut of the 30th Anniversary MX-5 Miata at the Chicago Auto Show.
Bob Ledesma bought his 1992 MX-5 Miata from a friend for only $500, with the promise of bringing it back to showroom condition. Since then, he has spent countless hours carefully restoring the car, sparing no detail.
“It is in perfect condition,” Ledesma explained. “I even used a toothbrush and cotton swab to clean and wax the motor. I just started cleaning and never stopped cleaning. It's just a fun car.”
Ledesma called the the project a “labor of love.” It wasn’t just the promise to his friend that pushed him to continue working on the car, but also the love for the car. Like his fellow MX-5 drivers, Ledesma doesn’t have just one thing he loves about his MX-5.
“I really love this car and there are a few things that really stand out to me,” Ledesma explained. “The first thing is how dependable it is. Also, the way Mazda designed it, it's just so incredible. The 50/50 balance of the car makes driving the car fun. I also love when I put the top down and feel freedom. It's like you're almost flying.”
Residing in Southern California, Ledesma’s favorite drive is the Pacific Coast Highway.
“I've got the best of everything here, especially in the MX-5. It's fun driving down the coast and being able to see everything. It’s my favorite drive because I can do it anytime I want.”
Ledesma has had the opportunity to take his MX-5 around the country. Aside from his local PCH drive, he’s most fond of a drive he took with the Utah Miata Club through Bryce Canyon in Utah.
“I got to drive my MX-5 up there and was able to visit all of the surrounding national parks there, too,” Ledesma said. “If you have the chance to take Scenic Byway 12 in Utah, it's like you're on the top of the world with the sharp razorbacks. That was a pretty thrilling experience.”
In 2014, Ledesma, along with more than 2,500 other Miata owners, drove to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca to help set the Guinness World Record for the most MX-5 Miatas in one place.
Ledesma’s love for Miata brought him to join not just one, but two Miata clubs: the Southern California Miata Club and the 805 Miata Club. Through both of these clubs he’s had the opportunity to travel to breathtaking locations such as Yosemite and has the pleasure to meet and drive with owners of all ages. He was even able to attend the reveal of the 2016 MX-5 Miata and WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca (formerly Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca).
Ledesma turns 70 years old next month, but feels as youthful as ever.
“When you drive an MX-5,” he explained, “you feel like a kid again.”