In our opinion the handling characteristics of the Mazda MX-5 are nearly perfect – it is a true sports car.
The third generation was launched with a stiffer and lighter body shell with high flexural and torsional rigidity and is roughly the same weight as the original model with an ideal 50:50 weight distribution.
It also retains the double-wishbone front and multi-link rear suspension systems, along with the MX-5’s front-mid-ship engine, rear-wheel drive layout with a stiff power plant frame in the transmission tunnel. This forms a rigid connection between the transmission and the rear differential to brace the chassis and suppress chassis deformation or flex during sporty driving. The 2.0 litre versions with 6-speed manual transmission are equipped with a limited slip differential (LSD) that ensures optimum traction under all driving conditions.
Overall the ride is supple, handling neutral and the steering is direct and perfectly weighted always giving the correct amount of feedback to the driver, keeping you composed and in tune with the road ahead.Ease of Use
Driving the Mazda MX-5 is about pure unadulterated fun and compared to most modern cars it has limited gadgetry to get to grips with.
The soft top model opens and closes manually in just a few seconds. The boot size of 150 litres is adequate and can be easily opened by pushing a button either on the dashboard or via the key.
The retractable hard-top roof (Roadster-Coupe) power folds in 12 seconds and it stores between the cabin and boot, which means your full boot capacity is always available, roof up or down.
Parking and manoeuvring the Mazda MX-5 couldn’t be more simple, with the roof down visibility is superb although with the roof up it is a little difficult to see through the rear quarter lights and rear window.
Everything is ergonomically laid out within the cabin and due to its large doors it is surprisingly easy to get in and out for such a low car.
There are a variety of small-item storage solutions, the storage tray in front of the gear lever is now large enough to hold a mobile phone or MP3 player and has a rubber mat to keep items in place. The centre console’s two cup holders now have a removable partition that allows the use of either two cup holders or one large storage space. There are also three practical storage boxes behind the seats.
This is a 10-year+ news article, from our Mazda archive, which dates back to the year 2000.
If in doubt check with your local Mazda dealer as car prices and technical data will have changed since 2011.
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