3D Miata Page

Many members of the Miata.net community have an interest in models of this enjoyable automobile. After reading quite a few messages on the Miata mailing list about their favorite toy models, I decided it was time to attempt a 3D computer model of my own. I am using the Lightwave 3D modelling and rendering software package.

Garmin .srf files created by rendering 3D models

I recently purchased a Garmin nuvi GPS unit and when I discovered the SRF Builder software I could not resist creating Miata MX-5 custom vehicles for the GPS display. Garmin's .srf files are essentially just 36 renderings of an object from a perspective view and 36 renderings from an overhead view. The zip files below contain both a .png file and a .srf file. The .srf files are the ones you will want to transfer to your Garmin unit's "vehicles" directory. The .png file is included in case you would like to attempt to use image manipulation software such as Photoshop to change the color of the vehicle or make other custom modifications. If you modify the .png file, you will need to use either the SRF Builder software or the online Nuvi Utilities to convert the changes to .srf format.

This first .srf file is created using renderings of my 3D model found at the bottom of this page, based on the first generation MX-5 (1990-1997). Click on the link below to download the zip file containing the .png and .srf files for this model.


The second .srf file is based on the third generation MX-5 (2006-present). I did not create the 3D model used for these renderings, therefore you will not find this 3D model on this web page. The model used for these renderings was created by digital artist arkviz and I purchased the 3D model at the Falling Pixel web site.


And due to popular demand, these final zip files contain multiple .srf files of various colors of the first generation (NA) and third generation (NC) Miatas. There are 8 different colors in the NA zip file and 12 colors in the NC zip file. These are based on images from the Miata Photo Gallery at miata.net



The 3D model of the 1990 Miata MX-5

I do not own a 3D digitizer, so this 3D model has been created without the aid of such a device. As a result, this model is not precise and you will find many artistic interpretations throughout the model (in other words, don't even think of using these as detailed CAD models for designing aftermarket products, you'll be real sorry you did :-).

Here are a couple of screen dumps showing the actual wireframe model being displayed in the Lightwave 3D modeler. These images will give you a good indication of the number of polygons in the model. Click on either of these thumbnail images to see the full size image.

Sample renderings

Here are two views of the model, click on either of these thumbnail images to view the large jpeg image.

3D model in several formats

This model will probably never be completely finished, as there always seems to be more work to do and more texturing to be added. But I'll make the current object available for download in several file formats, and you can use it as you please.

Many thanks to Thomas Paasch for modeling most of the interior objects in the car, and for giving me permission to include those objects in these downloads.

Lightwave Model and Scene files

Miata_lw.zip (754 KB)

3D Studio Model

Miata_3ds.zip (864 KB)

Wavefront Model

Miata_obj.zip (1,337 KB)