Japanese coachbuilder Mitsuoka has revealed the latest version of its second-generation Himiko roadster, which is based on the current ND-generation Mazda MX-5.

    The retro-looking Mitsuoka Himiko was first revealed in 2008 and was originally based on the previous NC-generation MX-5. The current second-generation Himiko was revealed in 2018 and blends exterior design elements of classic British roadsters like the Jaguar XK120 and Morgan Plus 8.

    This latest version of the Himiko is limited to just 10 units in Japan and is priced from ¥6,787,000 (~A$71,500), which is almost $19,000 more expensive than the most expensive MX-5 sold in Australia.

    Changes include a tweaked grille and badging, and new leather seats that can be matched with the exterior colour.

    If you haven’t already noticed, the Mitsuoka Himiko is considerably larger than the MX-5 it’s based on. It measures in at 4580mm long, 1740mm wide, and 1235mm tall with a 2910mm wheelbase.

    This makes the Himiko 665mm longer, 10mm wider, and 5mm taller than the regular MX-5 roadster, with a 600mm longer wheelbase.

    Despite the added body mass, the Mitsuoka Himiko is only around 100kg more than the regular MX-5. It has a vehicle weight of 1190kg.

    The 2024 Mitsuoka Himiko is powered exclusively by a 1.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine that’s no longer available on the local MX-5 range, which produces 97kW of power and 152Nm of torque.

    This engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission only.

    Although the exterior of the Himiko looks drastically different to the MX-5, its interior is where the Mazda roots start to shine through a little more clearly.

    The only notable interior changes the Himiko receives over the MX-5 include unique trim colours, new upholstery and a Mitsuoka steering wheel badge.

    The Himiko isn’t the only modified MX-5 Mitsuoka currently offers as there’s also the Rock Star, designed to look like a Chevrolet C2 Corvette.

    Mitsuoka’s speciality for decades has been putting retro-inspired front and rear ends on cars from Japanese brands like Nissan and Toyota.

    Some have been rather simplistic affairs, like the Mitsubishi i-MiEV-based Like, while others have been more comprehensive, like the Honda NSX-based Orochi which had a radical new body and scissor doors.

    Other wild models have included the neoclassical Dore and Le-Seyde, based on the Nissan Silvia, and the Ford Mustang-based Galue Convertible.

    MORE: Everything Mazda MX-5

    Jack Quick

    Jack Quick is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne. Jack studied journalism and photography at Deakin University in Burwood, and previously represented the university in dance nationally. In his spare time, he loves to pump Charli XCX and play a bit of Grand Theft Auto. He’s also the proud owner of a blue, manual 2020 Suzuki Jimny.

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