Mazda's MX-5 roars back with even more power

The Mazda MX-5, the world’s favourite sports car, returns. And this time, Mazda has really nailed it.


(Image credit: Dominic Fraser)

The world's best-selling sports car, the Mazda MX-5, was already synonymous with driving fun. This fourth iteration is also the most powerful model yet. For 2019, Mazda has given its "traditionally peppy-but-not-quick" MX-5 17% more horsepower, says Mark Rechtin on Motor Trend. And while in the old MX-5 "you'd feel the power delivery wane and hear the engine get reedy, not so with the new gen".

Then again, most folk don't buy an MX-5 for its power. Rather, "they delight in its handling, which is communicative and direct at up to 80%, then thrillingly (some might say startlingly) tail-happy at the extreme". In the end, it is the same "lovably annoying" MX-5: "flittery, flighty, wiggly and floppy".


(Image credit: Dominic Fraser)

Nor has there been much change to the tiny cabin, says Andrew English in The Daily Telegraph. "You wear this car like bath water, although the introduction of reach (as well as height) adjustment for the steering is very welcome for taller drivers." The boot, while minute, will swallow three or four squashy bags. "Above all, however, the MX-5 feels just so direct and connected that it's hard not to be having a good time even when you're driving to work." It's quite simply "the best sports car for the money in the world, full stop", says Motor Trend's Scott Evans. "They nailed it."

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Price: from £18,999; Power: 181bhp @ 4,400rpm, 151lb ft @ 4,000rpm; Top speed: 136mph;0-62mph: 6.5 secs; Fuel economy: 40.9mpg/33.6 EU Combined/Urban; CO2 emissions: 156g/km

Chris Carter

Chris Carter spent three glorious years reading English literature on the beautiful Welsh coast at Aberystwyth University. Graduating in 2005, he left for the University of York to specialise in Renaissance literature for his MA, before returning to his native Twickenham, in southwest London. He joined a Richmond-based recruitment company, where he worked with several clients, including the Queen’s bank, Coutts, as well as the super luxury, Dorchester-owned Coworth Park country house hotel, near Ascot in Berkshire.

Then, in 2011, Chris joined MoneyWeek. Initially working as part of the website production team, Chris soon rose to the lofty heights of wealth editor, overseeing MoneyWeek’s Spending It lifestyle section. Chris travels the globe in pursuit of his work, soaking up the local culture and sampling the very finest in cuisine, hotels and resorts for the magazine’s discerning readership. He also enjoys writing his fortnightly page on collectables, delving into the fascinating world of auctions and art, classic cars, coins, watches, wine and whisky investing.

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