The MX-5, also known as Miata ( /miˈɑːtə/) in North America and Eunos Roadster in Japan, is a lightweight two-seater roadster, of front-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout, built by Mazda in Hiroshima, Japan. The model was introduced in 1989 at the Chicago Auto Show. The MX-5 was conceived as a small roadster – with light weight and minimal mechanical complexity limited only by legal and safety requirements; technologically modern, but a philosophically direct descendant of small British and Italian roadsters of the 1960s such as the Triumph Spitfire, MG MGB, Fiat 124 Sport Spider, Alfa Romeo Spider and Lotus Elan.
The second generation MX-5 (NB) was launched in 1998 and the current (NC) model has been in production since 2005. It continues to be the best-selling two-seat convertible sports car in history and by February 2011 over 900,000 MX-5s had been built and sold around the world.
Since the launch of the third generation MX-5, Mazda consolidated worldwide marketing using the MX-5 name, though enthusiasts in the US still refer to it as Miata, a name that means "reward" in Old High German, and the vehicle in 2012 was still marketed by Mazda in the US as the MX-5 Miata.
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... In 2000, the Guinness Book of World Records declared the MX-5 the best-selling two-seat sports car in history, with total production of 531,890 units ... The 250,000th MX-5 rolled out of the factory on November 9, 1992 the 500,000th, on February 8, 1999 the 750,000th, in March 2004 the 800,000th in January 2007, and 900,000th ... As of February 4, 2011, Total production of MX-5 reached 900,000 units ...