Grassroots Motorsports is auctioning off this rotary-powered 1996 Mazda Miata for a good cause. The project was owned by avid racer and GRM forum member Mike Smith. His plan was to take the powertrain from his wrecked rotary-powered Jensen-Healey and install it into the Miata.
Unfortunately Mike passed away from cancer before the project could be finished. So a group of volunteers from GRM staff, forum members and the former owner’s family worked on finishing the project in honor of the owner with all proceeds of the auction going to his Daughter’s college fund.
The small Miata is powered by a turbocharged 1.3 L 13B two-rotor from a JDM 1989 RX-7 turbo. The previous owner had the engine rebuilt and GRM estimates it produces 250 horsepower and 200 lb-ft of torque. Mounted behind the engine is a five-speed manual transmission from a second-generation RX-7 turbo.
The volunteer group had to make their own mounts along with cut the firewall to fit the engine. The engine sits so far back that this Miata is a true mid-engine car. The team also had to modify the sub-frame. The suspension has been upgraded to a Flyin’ Miata Stage-2 coilover suspension kit.
Besides the purchase of the car you can also help Mike’s Daughter by donating to her GoFundMe page.