There are lots of good reasons to buy a newer Mazda Miata.
In 2019, Mazda made several critical improvements to the ND (resulting in the ND2 designation). Power rose 26 horses to 181 at 7,000 rpm, and torque rose 3 lb-ft to 151 at 4,000 rpm. Mazda also bumped the redline from 6,800 rpm to 7,500 rpm, and offered a GT-S package for manual-equipped Grand Tourings that bolted on the limited-slip diff, Bilsteins, and strut tower brace from the Club models.
These changes were transformative. I could wind a 2019 out in the local mountains using nothing but second and third gear, and enjoying terrific response as low as 25 mph in hairpins and up to 80 mph on straights. Previously, I'd always needed to briefly shift to fourth or just back off early for the next curve.
Still, the car's rear-end was still a little squirrely, especially on imperfect pavement.
For 2022, Mazda added Kinematic Posture Control, or KPC. Essentially, it uses subtle individual rear braking to settle the car's rear end. I gave it a try in a Club with the Brembo/BBS/Recaro package, and that's when my wallet tried to leap out of my pocket, bound across town, and land on the Mazda dealership's F&I manager's desk. The car is now the best it has ever been.
You can read my review of the 2022 Miata here:
Unfortunately, I have other plans for that $35K+. Like a new paver driveway and back patio, for example. My home's previous owners cheaped out on lots of things, including the driveway. A Ford F-150 Lightning's weight crushed the edge of it, and, well, that's forcing a repair before I'd planned.
So, my old Mazdaspeed, which is great but not as deeply soul satisfying as a '22, remains my toy for the foreseeable future. Besides, it's long paid for, making it a super-cheap thrill.
Still, I lust for a Polymetal Gray '22 or '23 Club with Brembos, forged BBS wheels, and Recaro seats.