Crazy Red Italian Driving Lights

[1/26/2000] Reviewed by Matthew Kane -

Applicable to '90 - '97 1.8 liter

Driving light kit with all required harnesses, etc.

Fantastic instructions. The lights are connected to be on with the ignition, so they act like daytime running lights.

This is my second set to install. The first set took almost 2 hours to install because the 95 M edition required removing a lot of plastic parts.

Thsi time on my 95 M edition I decided to replace the bolts that mount the lights in the openings with shorter pieces that clear the top of the lights. I removed the lights from the mounting bracket, used the shorter bolts and split washers to attach the housings to the car, then reattached the lights to the brackets. Total time to install 15 minutes and you don't have to remove anything unless you have an aftermarket grill.

Under 30 minutes to remove completely

Reviewed by: Joe Yount -

2 lights fit in mouth of car. Custom harness. Easy to install.

As usual with Crazy Red's Products, easy to install. They look great in the mouth of the car. That's the main reason I got'em. I love'em!

Have noticed fewer vans switching lanes when I'm there.

Turn on with ignition. I have read that driving lights are supposed to project farther than high beams. Not my experience. Maybe they are not aimed right, but considering that they are running lights, I wouldn't want them shining high all the time anyways. The difference I noticed is on curvy hills, good for our miatas. You know when you go over a hill, and you cant quite see the crest of it, the low beams miss it, and you wish you could see around the sides of the road. No problem with my CRAZY RED DRVING LIGHTS. Hills + curves at night are better now.

Under 5 minutes to remove

Reviewed by: Sonny Tu -

Add on lights which fit into the mouth of the grill. Adds "fill-in" at night and makes the vehicle more noticeable during the day.

I purchased my Miata STO in 9/97 and had been perusing the pages of for a few months prior to that. I couldn't wait to buy and install the CRI lights because I had heard so many good things about them and the price is a real bargain. I ordered and installed them sometime in October. First off, the install was a snap with the impeccable instructions provided by CRI. The diagrams were great but the photos were something to be desired. However, I didn't need the photos because the directions were outstanding. I set-up the lights to turn on whenever the ignition was turned on so I didn't have to worry about draining the battery accidentally if I forgot to shut them off. I began encountering problems when the winter chill set in. I live in NYC and even though we have been getting rather mild winters lately (very little snow), it does get bitterly cold at times. The passenger side lens cracked and sure enough, within a few weeks, the bulb burned out. I contacted CRI in February and they sent me a replacement "egg" for ~US$15. I installed that and then the bulb blew out again within a few weeks (late March). I contacted CRI again and they sent me the back of the "egg" -- which includes the bulb -- for FREE. I thought that was very nice of them to do so. Just two weeks ago, the driver side lens cracked and last week, the bulb on that one blew out. Now I'm faced with having to purchase another "egg". (Unless CRI wants to send me a new one for free...) The thing about the lights is that CRI doesn't make them. He buys whichever lights he can get at the time for a reasonable price, customizes them for the Miata and provides the directions for installation. Admittedly, this is no easy task so for the less than mechanically inclined, this is great. However, I wish the lights he used were of better quality. I don't know if the problems I've faced have to do with the weather here in the northeast. If you live in warmer climates and don't have the temperature extremes we have here, these lights

1. Great customer service.
2. Very easy installation.
3. Good for night time "fill-in" and daytime visibility.
4. Less than mediocre quality.

Reviewed by: Mike McNally -

Driving lights.

I've had my lights for about a year (maybe more). No troubles so far. I had the same experience as described in another review with Hella replacement bulbs: they don't fit. Bulbs sold in blister packs off the rack at AutoZone (central Texas) work fine and are a bit cheaper than Hellas anyway (both are around $3).

As to the problems mentioned with the grille: You can turn the rubber wiring boot around so that it faces forward. The downside is that it might pick up more junk and possibly reduce bulb life, but I'm not particularly worried. It's much easier to aim the lights down by a couple degrees with that  change made.

Yahoo! Always buy spare bulbs (they're cheap).

Reviewed by: gene porter -

55W Driving Lights mounted in mouth

Installed them this morning; have two hours driving time; feel a lot safer in Washington traffic (2nd only to LA): Easy installation; good instructions, but updates to reflect '97 "as deleviered" would help a little (eg; my STO "Blue Connecter has no plug and only one pin)

Good product; good price; only change would be to feed wiring harness under the trim BEFORE the lights are installed/bolted down; this would speed the installation a little and possibly dress up the result.

Reviewed by: John Spletzer -

I have had this product installed for 8 months now on my '91 BRG. I just suffered my first blown bulb after this time (ungaraged). The cost of the replacement bulb was $4.99 at Pep Boys (Sylvania). I had initially bought a GE replacement bulb from K-mart. Although it was also rated a "Hella H3 55W", the actual glass bulb was too large to fit in the orifice of the light. Also, remember when replacing the bulb to not touch the glass portion with your fingers, as the oil will lead to preamture bulb failure.

And, take care when you are washing the "mouth" area of your car, as high pressure water can knock the rubber boots off the light bases and fill them with water.

Overall, I am very satisfied with the product. The additional light is great on those windy, unlighted roads at night. It is also nice to not have to put up the "barn door" head lights all the time, when the extra visibility from the driving lights is more than adequate. To add to that, even my two younger brothers think they look cool.

As usual from Dave, good service, good price, and a good product.

Reviewed by: Steve Goodbody -

Aftermarket Driving Lights

I have purchased both the Crazy Red airhorns and driving lights and found the service, response and installation associated with these products to be excellent.

However, since installing the driving lights I have had repeated failures of one light. Every bulb blows after 2 weeks of service and I have been unable to find a good reason or cure. I have been careful to avoid handling the bulb surfaces, and have replaced all of the wiring connectors, but to no avail. Each halogen bulb costs about 12 dollars.

This has been happening since the date I installed the lights and for about 6 months since; Unfortunately, I have now reached the point where I am going to remove the lights for good; the cost of ownership of the product is too high and I am fed up continually having my head stuck in the "mouth" of the car.

The airhorns are superb and are highly recommended, however!

Good price initially, unreliable and expensive in the longer term.

Reviewed by: Maggie Johnson -

Great instructions, especially for a novice mechanic, like myself! I did run into some problems and this project took much longer than 30 minutes. I had to replace a bullet connector that snapped off and I did struggle a lot with getting the lights in place because of the grill.

I am still not satisfied with how the lights are aimed because of the grill, therefore I would not recommend this product if you plan to keep your grill.

Reviewed by: Errol Keali'i Llantos -

55W Clear Projector Beam Driving Lights

These lights are great!!! They easily "outshine" my Brainstorm low profile low beam lights (30W).

I emailed my order to DAve Denuzzo. He was nice enough to send back a msg acknowledging my order. The kit came a week later via U.S. Priority Mail.

Similar to the Crazy Red Air Horns, the kit came with an EXCELLENT set of instructions. It came with the materials list, figures, pictures, safety warnings, required tools list, and helpful install tips.

Because of the superb instructions, the installation was SUPER EASY and SIMPLE. It only took me 24 minutes to do the job. Yes, I timed myself.

Quick tip: Mounting the light assembly to the mouth of the car is a little tricky since the nut will not be visible. You have to do most of it by touch. I used a technique I picked up from another miata.netter to do this. I started the nut on the bolt, then held the nut static and turned the bolt/light assembly. I turned the bolt/light assy until it was tight and the lens was facing forward. You may have to do this once or twice to get it just right.

Wiring the kit was easy. The kit came with a custom-made harness pre-measure, pre-cut, and with the proper connectors already in place. You just feed it through recommended paths, then you make the necessary connections.

I presently have the lights activated by the ignition per the instructions. But I think I will install the switch sometime in the future to prolong the life of the bulbs.

I really appreciate having these lights. They extend your car's illumination significantly. The light kit is comparable, in my opinion, in performance and size to the PIAAs and CATZ but at half the price.

TWO THUMBS UP for the Crazy Red Driving lights.

Info at:  

Reviewed by: Tim Evans -

accessories lighting

Fairly easy installation but requires manual dexterity. Very satisfied with the price!

Very bright lights! Look sort of like 3000GT driving lights. Hopefully trucks will now be able to see my silver on cloudy/rainy days. Have already been tagged once by a semi because he couldn't see my car. Ouch!

Reviewed by: Brian Bousman -

I ordered these driving lights from the Crazy Red Italian and had them in my hands less than a week later. It took me about 75 minutes to install them but then Iıve never been that quick with mechanical work.

Dave DeNuzzo has provided a great package. He takes an existing set of driving lights, throws in a custom harness thatıs just right for the Miata, and then a set of excellent directions to make installation fairly easy. My only complaint is that a lot of the pictures in the instructions reproduced so poorly that they were almost useless. Even so, the written directions make the pictures almost unneeded.

There are two difficult parts to the installation: getting the bolt that holds the lights in place tightened down, and; running the wiring harness through to the lights. Another reviewer mentions a trick to tightening the bolts down and if I had thought of that it probably would have been a breeze. Still, its a bit of a challenge to get a wrench on a nut only by feel.

The wiring harness was time-consuming but not too hard. It depends on your skill in running a stiff wire from the engine compartment through to the nose. This took me some time but others may get it easier than me.

Ok, so installing them is easy enough, what about performance? No problem there, they put out a lot of light and are easy to aim. The kit is wired so that the lights are on all the time. My next mod will be to put in a dashboard switch so I can turn them off if I want.

In summary, the kit is inexpensive, easy to install, and works well.

Back to Lighting

16 February, 2000