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Mazda Rolls Out Stunning Special Edition MX-5 Miata at Chicago Auto Show

The Chicago Auto Show, which kicks off its media preview Feb. 8-9 before opening to the public on Feb. 10, features the debut of a special edition 2012 Mazda MX-5 Miata that will have a limited production run of 450.

Chicago might seem like an interesting place to roll out a convertible but the Miata and the Windy City go way back. The first Miata made its global debut – not just its North American debut – at the 1989 Chicago Auto Show. Mazda must be superstitious because the MX-5 Miata is the world's best-selling two-seat roadster with more than 900,000 produced.

The 2012 MX-5 Miata Special Edition is simply put a stunner. The picture accompanying this article may not do it justice. The top, if it were cloth, would probably not look that attractive but it's a black-only Power Retractable Hard Top. It’s the first time Mazda is rolling out a MX-5 with a roof that doesn't match the body color.

That black theme continues throughout the new MX-5 with new 17-inch black gunmetal alloy wheels, black exterior accents, black heated leather seats and piano black interior finishes. The MX-5 Miata Special Edition also comes into two new exterior colors: crystal white and velocity red. Our money's on the crystal white because it seems to work better with the black roof.

Available with either the six-speed manual transmission with short-throw shifter or six-speed Sport automatic transmission with steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters, the Special Edition model is based off the Grand Touring model. Both premium and suspension packages will be standard on the MX-5 Special Edition and include features such as a Bluetooth® hands-free phone system, Sirius Satellite Radio, Bilstein shocks and a sport-tuned suspension.

As the television huckster would say, "But wait, that's not all!" Mazda is going to also be rolling out some other special vehicles at the Chicago Auto Show:

* Turbo2 - Unveiled at SEMA in November, this concept is the brainchild of The Autobarn, which owns two Mazda dealerships in the Greater Chicago area. Here, a "Zoom-Zoom Concentrated" Mazda2 is outfitted with an extra-strength component in the form of a MAZDASPEED3 MZR 2.3-liter Direct Injection Spark Ignition (DISI) turbo engine. Finally, the Mazda2 gets some much-needed oomph.

* Dempsey Racing No. 40 GRAND-AM Road Racing Race Car
- Most recently seen on the SPEED Channel's live coverage of the 50th Anniversary Rolex 24 at Daytona last month, the No. 40 car - piloted by Patrick Dempsey, Joe Foster, Charles Espenlaub, Tom Long and Charlie Putman - made its third consecutive Top 10 finish in the annual 24-hour race.

* 1990 Miata - A first-generation Mazda Miata, which made its debut in Chicago in 1989. This vehicle has 3,688 original miles and is the 15th Miata off the line.

* Star Mazda Championship Open-Wheel Race Car - The Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear is a major part of the Mazda Road to Indy. Rising motorsports stars from around the world compete for prizes valued at $1.5 million, including a scholarship to move up and compete in the 2013 Firestone Indy Lights series.

So, if you're in the Windy City for the Chicago Auto Show, check out the Special Edition 2012 Mazda MX-5 Miata and place your order. They are bound to sell out quick.