The Mazda MX5 has certainly had it’s fair share of stick from different quarters over the years, but the over riding theme to this misguided mockery is that it is somehow a “girls car”. Even if there were such a thing as a girls car the MX5 is so far from something like that the jokes don’t even make sense.
The idea behind the MX5 was certainly one from an era when men were men, though quite possibly when men were also sexist, smoked all the time and were never present at the birth of their children; the 60s. Mazda wanted to create a car from the height of the British sports car era, icons like the Lotus Elan were cited as major influences. At the same time, they also wanted to avoid the famous reliability problems that went with many of our beloved roadsters so using the styling and ethos and ignoring the awful mechanical technology Mazda created the MX5. The recipe was brilliantly simple; rear wheel drive, small revvy engine, convertible roof and reliability, what more could anyone want?
The MX5 was a very pure car and still is, although later models were refined a little the new MX5 is a step back to driving heaven. The 1.6 and the 1.8 engines in early models wanted to be revved, and the almost perfect 50:50 weight distribution made driving the MX5 nothing short of magical. Of course you could drive it around in a sedate way, but why on earth would you? it was not about silly speeds, it was about pushing the little car hard and never really breaking the speed limit.
Generation after Generation
The basic format of the MX5 has never changed, and with that, nor has the ethos. The “5” was, is and hopefully always will be a drivers car, it is also affordable and cheap to run. Sports cars are not known for reliability but that is just what the MX5 has always delivered. Everytime a new version comes out, the same people say the same thing about it being a bit wet or not fast enough, and the same people simply refuse to get in one. Drive one and you will never look at one in the same way again.
The “New One”
The motoring world has always accepted the MX5 as being a well balanced, well built stroke of genius, but there is always a worry when Mazda bring out a new one. This year sees the full launch of the latest version and reviews were awaited with bated breath. As expected there was no need to worry, the new MX5 has been widely hailed as yet another success. The news gets even better though, it is a little more driver focused than the last, it has lost weight too, and it is still affordable to buy and run, well done Mazda!