MX-5 embraces the “Spirit of Sportscar” Mazda philosophy
Lastly, the manual adds an induction manifold sound enhancer that gives the engine a more throaty sound.
There’s a lot more standard equipment, such as automatic self-levelling LED headlights and LED running lights.
On the inside, a navigation system is standard, as is a seven-inch color centre stack touchscreen with Mazda Connect through the standard centre console mounted human machine interface (HMI) with rotary access knob.
The drivetrain is the same as everyday Miatas, with a 2.0-litre direct injection inline Skyactiv four-cylinder producing 155 hp and 148 lb/ft of torque.
Fuel consumption on recommended premium fuel is 8.9/7.1L/100 km city/highway with the manual and 9.0/6.7L/100 km in the automatic.
Trunk space is naturally limited to 127 litres. There is no spare tire, but an inflator kit in the trunk augmented by a
standard tire pressure monitoring system to alert the driver if a tire is going down.
One could not have asked for a better venue to introduce the RF than San Diego and its many hilly routes going out to the east in sunny skies and 22 degree Celsius temperatures.
My co-driver owns a pristine 2008 Miata and is very familiar with its habits, so he put on a driving display with the RF, rarely touching the brakes but using the gears and engine braking to the full for a most entertaining ride for me.
I sensed the extra 200 lb of the folding top over the rear wheels plus the limited slip diff made the RF a tad more stable in high-G corners.
I was nowhere near as smooth, but I managed to make the most of the gear changes that remain as light and positive in engagement as they were back in 1990, with a clutch to match.
After my stint at the wheel, I got out with a big smile on my face.
And that’s what the MX-5 does. It puts the joy into just going someplace – anyplace – just for the heck of it.
Yes, the new MX-5 RF continues to embrace the “Spirit of a Sportscar” Mazda philosophy in every way.