Mazda MX-5: Tested and prices

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MAZDA’S fastidious engineers regard preserving the MX-5 updated as a labour of affection.

The newest tweaks add energy to the most well-liked variations of the charismatic two-seater, the article of affection of a loyal following for just about three a long time.

With out sheetmetal adjustments within the second improve in 9 months, the one exterior alterations are to alloy wheel colors.

Key enhancements are an additional 17kW/5Nm for the two.Zero-litre engine. The bottom 1.5-litre provides a meagre 1kW/2Nm however the larger engine is anticipated to account for about 95 per cent of gross sales.

Costs have elevated throughout the vary by no less than $750, though Mazda says that is offset by added tools valued at greater than $1100 in base variants and $1400 within the retractable hard-tops.

Throttle response has additionally been improved and the two.Zero can now work to a pink line of 7500rpm — up from 6800rpm.

Incremental however wide-ranging mechanical adjustments ship extra gas and air into the combustion chamber to extend the outputs.

Somewhat than delivering sledgehammer efficiency, as within the Ford Mustang which dominates the section, the updates keep the essence of what has made the MX-5 a world sports activities automotive star.

“You don’t must do warp speeds to have that enjoyable issue,” says Mazda advertising and marketing chief Alastair Doak. “That’s what MX-5 has all the time been about.”

“That’s why we don’t do enormous, sticky tyres. That may lose the enjoyable issue and that chuckability that has all the time been a part of the DNA.

“The engineering committee are so obsessed with it. They’re all the time making an attempt to enhance it and their imaginative and prescient for the automotive is laser-sharp. You have got that readability of function … they’re by no means glad.”

Falling into line with Mazda’s raft of newest upgrades to the CX-5, CX-9 and Mazda6, the roadster’s security equipment provides autonomous rising braking to assist keep away from or reduce a collision in ahead and reverse.

There are additionally fatigue detection and cameras that scan the roadside to replace the velocity restrict readout within the devices. One other very important addition is a rear view digital camera, projecting the picture on the dash-mounted color display.

Internally there are design adjustments to the removable cup holders (which nonetheless really feel flimsy). Seat recline levers are extra inflexible, whereas the steering wheel adjusts for attain.

Six conservative colors from the “world” color palette stay — silver, gray, black, white, blue and pink. Doak says there’s no signal of any funky yellows, orange or greens.


The replace makes factor higher. The Mazda is sharper and extra responsive from the get-go.

Transmission choices are six-speed handbook or six-speed computerized. Manuals account for greater than half of MX-5s gross sales — testomony to its partaking driving traits and defying Australia’s fascination with self-shifters.

Turning with precision and answering the throttle with linear responses, the diminutive drop-top relishes adjustments in path because it bites the bitumen with rear-wheel drive confidence.

Amongst its many attributes, the MX-5 can deal with the mundane and the ragged edge. Carving by way of the Gold Coast hinterland with the highest down, it morphs between grand tourer and race automotive.

The adjustments aren’t monumental however come as helpful foils to suspension tweaks to enhance journey earlier this yr.


Four stars

Engineers have remedied the chinks within the MX-5 armour. It’s faster underneath acceleration, but stays a weapon on twisty terrain. It balances consolation and efficiency with out breaking the finances.


PRICES Up by $750 throughout the vary. The most affordable 2.Zero is now the hardtop folding roof spinoff, which prices $39,400. The extra in style higher-spec GT variants begin from $41,960 for the soft-top whereas the RF is an additional $4000.

TECH Sensible Metropolis Brake Assist works from Four-80km/h and, in reverse, 2-8km/h. Cameras scan and supply a continuing velocity restrict reminder within the devices, plus a rear-view digital camera. Upgrades to allow smartphone mirroring will likely be out there on the finish of the yr.

PERFORMANCE The two.Zero-litre will get an additional 17kW/5Nm due to adjustments to exhaust, throttle valves and internals. The 1.5-litre positive factors 1kW/2Nm.

DRIVING Improved throttle response all through the rev vary, a useful foil to the earlier suspension updates.

DESIGN On RFs, 16 and 17-inch wheels change to black metallic to match the door mirrors. High-spec GT RF fashions get 17-inch vivid silver alloys.


PRICE $34,190-$48,690

WARRANTY/SERVICING 5 years/limitless km; $1869 for five years

ENGINES 2.Zero-litre Four-cyl 135/205Nm, 1.5-litre 97kW/152Nm

SAFETY 5 stars, Four airbags, AEB, site visitors signal recognition, reversing digital camera

THIRST 6.2L-7.2L/100km

SPARE Inflation equipment


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