The 2016 Mazda MX5 Miata: How does it fare after 3 years?



The 2016 version of the Mazda MX5 was launched with high expectations. This was bound to happen, considering it is the predecessor to the old model of Mazda MX5, which used to be the world’s bestselling sports car for more than 25 years. It is true that matching those features at a competitive price is no mean job. So, when the revamped version was launched, we wanted to test it for a longer period of time before we could arrive at a suitable conclusion. After all, just one test drive and a first impression afterwards simply does not do justice to the new generation of one of the most successful cars ever.
What struck us at the very first glance was something that stayed with us till the end- the new Mazda MX5 Miata was a lot shorter than the previous model. For anybody a decent size more than “petite”, this is bound to be a disappointment. The backseat is spacious enough for two people but that is it. The lack of a glove box sticks out sorely in our eyes, and the cubby in between the seats is also not very spacious. The boot space is just enough to pack in two overnight bags. While this is great for anybody whose idea of travelling largely revolves around sleeping over at a friend’s place, for a vacation any longer you have to be prepared to stuff more bags into the backseat or convince the friend in the backseat to let you keep your bags under his feet. All in all, this car needs much more work in terms of storage space and practicality.
Coming to the engine, this two-seat, rear-drive convertible has a 155-hp 2.0-liter I-4 engine with 148 lb-ft of torque. While this makes the car one of the toughest on the market even today, it is just a tad bit disappointing that there are no other options available in this series for people looking for a bit more of customisation or upgradation. The only options available in the transmission of this model are the same as those in the previous Miata: a six-speed manual or an optional six-speed automatic. The fuel economy of this model is much higher than the previous generation of Miata, with manual-equipped models achieving 27/34 mpg city/highway while variants with the optional six-speed automatic are rated at an impressive 27/36 mpg. In all our repeated tests, the numbers were impressive. It made it to 60 mph in 5.8 seconds on an average. The performance remained consistent through rough terrains and over the years has not diminished much. This is the point where we can proudly vouch for it as a worthy investment.
However, the only problem we have had with the performance is its noise. The car is really loud at 90 decibels of racket at wide-open throttle on the expressway and 80 decibels at a steady 70-mph cruise. For a solo drive where the space pinch does not hurt much, this is the only other issue that stays and probably is a more persistent problem than the structural flaw in the lack of space.
On the whole, the new version of the Mazda MX5 Miata fares pretty well on our parameters. Barring a few structural and design errors, it turns in a fairly good performance and stands the test of time. If you are not looking at driving your family or friends to a weekend picnic, and the cabin noise does not bother you over your music, this new Miata is perfect for the solo wanderer in you.

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