Though the MX-5 is pretty quick, its primary purpose is not necessarily about speed. The Miata is all about agility, fun and engagement and as a result most of its performance is derived from its lightweight chassis rather than from a big, overpowered engine.
The current MX-5 convertible tips the scales at about 2,300 pounds, incredibly light by today's standards. That lightness combines with rear-wheel drive to make the Miata one of the best handling cars on the road.
The MX-5 Miata is offered as a soft-top convertible and, in the RF, as a retractable fastback, with a power activated hardtop supported by handsome rear buttresses. There is only one engine available on the MX-5, a 2.0L 4-cylinder that makes 155 horsepower. Power is sent to the rear wheels via a 6-speed manual transmission, though a 6-speed automatic optional. Thanks to the car's light weight, 155 horsepower is still be enough to get the Miata to 60 mph in under seven seconds. The most impressive result of the car's light curb weight might be the fuel economy though. The MX-5 convertible is rated at 27 mpg in the city, meaning that owners can really have their cake and eat it too.
The MX-5 convertible comes in three different trims -- Sport, Club and Grand Touring -- while the MX-5 RF is offered in Club, Grand Touring and Launch Edition.
The Sport trim aims for purity, stripping back most of the options and giving drivers a chance to really focus on the fun of driving. Standard features on the Sport trim include 16-inch alloy wheels, cruise control, sporty cloth-upholstered seats, air-conditioning, a 6-speaker stereo with USB input, Bluetooth connectivity, a leather shift knob and a manual folding soft top.
The Club trim is more about performance and should be the choice for anyone who wants to take their MX-5 to the track. The Club trim comes standard with 17-inch wheels, which are shod in wider rubber than those on the Sport trim. The Club trim also includes Bilstein shock absorbers, a limited-slip differential (manual transmission only) some additional aero parts and piano black exterior mirrors. Also included with the Club trim is a Bose 9-speaker stereo complete with 7inch touchscreen monitor. A set of lightweight, forged BBS wheels covering uprated Brembo brakes with red calipers are optional on the Club trim.
The Grand Touring trim adds just a dash of comfort to the otherwise very focused Miata. Leather seating is included as standard, as is automatic climate control, a built-in garage door opener and satellite radio. A host of safety options include a blind spot/lane departure warning system, rain sensing wipers and automatic high beams.
The RF Launch Edition, limited to 1,000 copies, offers a unique color combination of Machine Gray Metallic with a hand-painted roof in Piano Black. The interior features Auburn Nappa leather. The Launch Edition also comes with a special Tourneau chronograph watch.
The Mazda MX-5 received a ground-up redesign last year. For 2017, a new model the Miata RF, or Retractable Fastback, joins the fold. The RF features rear buttresses connected by a black spoiler, and the whole system lifts at the push of a button to allow the central hard top to retract down into a storage compartment. The buttresses then return to their previous position. The RF is otherwise mechanically identical to the Miata rag top, which is largely unchanged for 2017.