Mazda MX-5: a classic roadster with added purity

Mazda MX-5 prices start at a very reasonable £18,495

MAZDA'S new MX-5 is one of the cars I'm most looking forward to getting to drive this year, and the good news if you're considering buying one is that prices start at just £18,495, writes William Scholes.

That seems eminently reasonable for a bespoke open-top sports car which Mazda describes as "pure roadster".

Rear-wheel-drive, 50:50 weight distribution and a superb balance of power and grip are essential MX-5 ingredients, and the new car builds on these with a superior power to weight ratio over its predecessors and more comfort and technology.

Prices stretch to £23,295; two petrol engines will be offered - a 1.5-litre with 129bhp and a 2.0-litre with 158bhp - and there are five trim levels. All models get LED headlamps, alloy wheels and a six-speed manual gearbox.

"Maintaining the driver-focused ethos that has made the Mazda MX-5 the best-selling two-seater sports car of all time, the latest MX-5 was conceived and developed under the concept of 'innovate in order to preserve'," says Mazda.

"This engineering philosophy has allowed Mazda to maintain the agility, fun and engagement that has always defined the MX-5 while at the same time meeting ever-increasing safety and efficiency requirements, alongside improved refinement.

"The lightest MX-5 since the iconic original, the all-new Mazda MX-5 is shorter, lower and wider than the outgoing car, with the smallest overhangs and lowest centre of gravity yet."

This is likely to be more than mere advertising puff. Not only does Mazda know what it's talking about when it comes to roadsters, but at the moment it is also on a real roll and has a brilliant cars throughout its range.

If, like me, you can't wait to drive the new MX-5, you'll have to make do with the configurator on the Mazda website at


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