Mazda Miata

Mazda takes a prudent approach with the Miata, refraining from inundating it with a slew of changes with each new model year, and for good reason—it simply doesn’t need it. In the latest   iteration, Mazda introduced fresh colors both inside and out, along with the addition of Kinematic Posture Control (KPC), a driver-assist feature aimed at enhancing on-road feel by applying slight rear-wheel braking while cornering.

While KPC is intended to curb body roll, my personal experience still encountered a fair share of it. However, this isn’t necessarily a drawback. Cars that iron out all body movements during spirited driving can feel excessively capable for most roads and drivers, leaving the impression of underutilized performance. The Miata, on the contrary, embraces body pitch and roll under braking and cornering. This not only communicates when the car is nearing its limits better but also makes those limits feel more manageable at speeds unlikely to draw law enforcement’s attention. Steering is precise, striking the perfect balance between responsiveness and liveliness. Even without the optional Brembo brakes from the Club model, this Grand Touring variant stops quickly and confidently.

Combine this grounded approach to dynamics with an engine that delivers just the right amount of power, and the result is a car that always feels perfectly balanced. The Miata’s naturally aspirated 2.0-liter inline-4 engine produces 181 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque, and frankly, I hope it never offers more. While it may require a bit more throttle input to execute a pass, the engine’s note is delightful at higher revs, providing more opportunities to enjoy the smooth shifts from the tester’s six-speed manual transmission.

Other automakers would be wise to study Mazda’s six-speed manual transmission—it’s truly the best offered in any car today. The clutch has the ideal weight and communicates the bite point clearly. The gear lever’s travel is just right, effortlessly slotting into each gate. The throttle response is perfect; there’s no need for a rev-matching system in the Miata because the gas pedal delivers precise blips for clean downshifts every time. And Mazda has never programmed any rev hang into this car, for emissions or otherwise. Release the clutch, and the revs immediately drop. Smooth shifting is effortless—it’s so easy, anyone could do it.

For the   MX-5, there’s a flashy new off-white paint color, but my tester sports Mazda’s beloved Soul Red, an affordable and visually stunning option. While the Grand Touring trim may lack the Club’s eye-catching BBS wheel upgrade, its standard 17-inch alloys wrapped in Bridgestone Potenza S001 summer tires provide a good amount of sidewall, contributing to a smoother ride quality. There’s also a new dark red interior option available, though mine features the traditional black leather. The exterior paint color extends inward onto the upper door panels, breaking up the monotonous black interior.

As a roadster, the Miata isn’t exactly overflowing with practicality. Door panel storage is limited, and the detachable cup holders, while clever, are on the short side, leading to questions about tall-drink stability. Additionally, anything placed in them blocks access to the locking cubby between the seats. The pocket under the armrest is only large enough for a key, but the tray ahead of the shifter can hold a wallet or phone. Out back, the 4.6-cubic-foot trunk accommodates a couple of backpacks or a few bags of groceries. While trunk space is limited, the simple soft top design doesn’t eat into cargo space at all.

Like other Mazdas, the MX-5’s in-car tech leaves something to be desired. The Mazda Connect infotainment system, operated via a 7-inch touchscreen, is slow to boot up and occasionally sluggish to respond. Standard wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto alleviate some of the frustration, but touchscreen functionality is disabled while driving. However, the rotary knob allows for easy navigation between functions like Google Maps and Spotify. Two USB-A ports provide the only charging options, though given the presence of wireless smartphone mirroring, a faster USB-C charging solution would be appreciated. A small display in the gauge cluster provides trip meters, estimated distance to empty, and other relevant information.

While some sports cars may forgo safety features, the Miata doesn’t. Mazda equips the MX-5 with the traditional array of active and passive driver aids, including blind-spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking, and lane-departure warning. The Grand Touring trim adds automatic high beams, adaptive front headlights, traffic-sign recognition, and auto-dimming mirrors—a welcome addition for driving at night.

When considering its excellent driving dynamics and reasonable pricing, it’s clear that the   Mazda MX-5 is a remarkable car. And with the convenience of‘s purchasing and shipping services, obtaining one has never been easier. Whether browsing through available models or arranging for delivery to your doorstep, ensures that every step of the process is smooth and hassle-free, allowing you to focus on enjoying the exhilarating drive of your new Mazda MX-5.