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October 25, 2018

Mazda's Tribute to One of the Philippines's Best Racers Proves Cars Have Souls (w/ Video)

Mazda has always espoused a lasting bond between man and machine, and while it sounds more like a marketing tagline, things just got real—way real at the Philippine International Motor Show.

Mazda showed off their 2019 Mazda Collection headlined by the more powerful 2019 MX-5, but you know what got everyone teary-eyed? The first-generation MX-5 beside it. It’s no ordinary NA roadster mind you, it’s a racing MX-5—the last race car that Filipino racing legend Jose “Pocholo” Ramirez took to the track.

Restored under the supervision of Bermaz Auto Philippines, the distributor of Mazda vehicles in the country, the mechanicals were done by Mazda Tuning Specialist JR Cabrera while the bodywork was done by Kristian Ramos of Mazdatech PH.

Now running on its own power once more and finished “like Pocholo was racing it just yesterday,” the restored racing MX-5 was showed off to the family of the late racer led by Louis Ramirez and Stefan Ramirez.

 Not only is this a fitting tribute to one of the country’s best racers, but it also makes Mazda’s showcase the most soulful and most heartfelt one. It proves that cars can truly transcend the material and become a vessel of cherished memories that can be passed on for generations to come.

Unfortunately, Pocholo’s MX-5 was only viewable for the first day of PIMS. It’s currently being prepped for the final leg of the 2018 Miata Cup which will happen next month where it will be driven by Stefan Ramirez. If you missed it, you can watch the restoration process below.

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