Do I really need a roll bar?
Yes and no. The Mazda Miata is mostly a track-ready car. With a few modifications it can be a track monster, as Sam Smith recently found out. If you want to race your car in autocross you don’t need a roll bar. Get bored avoiding cones in a parking lot? Then you’ll most likely need a roll bar in your Mazda Miata to pass tech inspection. There are several different options and directions that you can go with roll bars. Here’s everything that I’ve learned so far.
Roll bar Options:
Blackbird Fabworkx: So Hot Right Now
If you want the roll bar that will make other Miata owners drool buy the Blackbird Fabworx. Their prices are higher then other companies, but their quality and look is much better. They will also powder coat the roll bar to whatever color you like. My dream roll bar from them is their GT3 style 6 point finished in white.
Hard Dog: The Gold Standard
I’d guess that 90 percent of the roll bars in Mazda Miatas are Hard Dog. It’s a classic, it’s reliable, it’s well established, and it’s the Coca-Cola of Miata roll bars. And known to HPDE inspectors as a safe option for weekend racers. If you call up and tell them what kind of Miata you have – Hard Dog has some of the best customer service out of ANY company.
Boss Frog: The Pepsi Cola of Miata Roll Bars
Boss Frog is the lesser known brand of roll bars for Mazda Miatas. But it’s still a great product, and some would say better quality. But it’s a matter of preference and taste. Amirite? The roll bar to get from Boss Frog is their Double Hoop Maxx, it’s beauitful and SCCA compliant.
So Once I Buy A Roll Bar, Am I In The Clear?
Not exactly, unfortunately. You can race in autocross since there isn’t the broomstick rule. If you do want to race on a track in the United States you will need to pass the broomstick rule. When your head and helmet is two-inches below your roll bar – you have passed the broomstick rule.
Are they safe?
Why wouldn’t a roll bar be safe? Well, I never thought about this but if you get rear ended and the roll bar smashed into the back of your head, that could kill you. But other people think you shouldn’t drive without one.
I’ll leave the merits up to you. For me? I’m buying a Blackbird Fabworx roll bar and heading straight to the track.
One more option is a custom job. I had one made by a local guy who does a lot of Spec Miata roll cages. I told him my requirements (legal for track days, short enough for the soft top to work, bolt-in to keep me legal for Stock class in autocross), and for the price of a Hard Dog he built me a custom bar. Another friend of mine took a vacation up to Canada, and thanks to the favorable exchange rate he got a custom bar AND his vacation for about the same price as a Hard Dog.
Just make sure your custom builder knows what they’re doing and builds a quality product. It would suck to get to the track, then fail tech for a poorly built roll bar. I chose my local builder because he’s well known locally by racers and sanctioning bodies for his Spec Miata and Corvette roll cage experience