1990 Mazda MX5 - Identity Crisis

Teenagers had it rough in the early '90s. A constant barrage of TV ads encouraged parents to send their kids to nuthouses if they were "closing their doors at night" or "smoking cigarettes." They could be experiencing an identity crisis, touted the ads, which were fueled by health insurance covering "mental" problems.

With this '90 Mazda MX-5 turning twin-digits in 2001, it appears it indeed has had an identity crisis and it is fully mental.

"The other day I heard a couple arguing over whether the car was a BMW Z3 or an S2000. That's kind of what I wanted to do was build a body that's unrecognizable," said owner Hendrix De Leon.

To do this, Premier Autoworks seam-molded the side skirts and rear bumper as well as a set of Z3 fender gills and a custom hood scoop to the body.

Front and rear bumpers hail from Bomex, as does the rear spoiler. The tonneau cover is from Rod Millen and fits perfectly when the hardtop is left at home, which is most of the time.

The Wingman front spoilers are dampened by Italian short shocks right below the European headlight conversion. Good riddance to the silly pop-ups that make every car look like Herbie the Love bug.

Under the clear corner lights is a shade of red normally found on BMWs. Dupont Z3 paint with two shades of red flake and mint-silver flake provide this eye-catching shade.

"The stock Miata color was too dark. I wanted something that would really blind people," said Hendrix.

When Hendrix isn't blinding people with his one-off paint job or Eagle's Eye fog lights, he's sure to be hurting their eardrums with the 800-watt system headed up by a CDX-700 Sony head-unit.

"I didn't have a whole lot of room for a stereo. So, Autotronix Sound Works fit some 8-inch kicker subs where the ragtop used to sit," said Hendrix.

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