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    Mazda Miata experiences...

    Has anyone in this group experienced the Mazda Miata MX5, namely the new retractable hardtop? How fun is it? within its limits, how does it compare to the 911?

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    i test drove the mx5 with a soft top and sport pack. the are was so much fun to drive. i took it out on a back road and was a blast to carry speed through corners. i have a spec miata that i track so i like the light weight and agility of these cars. power is decent and shifter is very nice.

    there is no real comparison between mx5 and a 911 except that both are fun to drive for very different reasons.

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    great car much lighter but less power different kind of fun

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    I recently bought a 2006 MX-5 after owning a supercharged 1994 Miata, and my boyfriend (nugget) just bought a 2007 C2S Cab. The third gen Miata is so much better than my first gen that all the various modifications I've had done just could not keep up with the '06. Sure, the supercharged '94 is faster in a straight line, but if that's all you care about, go buy a Mustang. Neither the MX-5 nor the 911 are for you.

    The MX-5 is a roadster, and as such, it's expected to corner. It's not really intended for the kind of raw speed a 911 can offer. I believe redline in top gear in the MX-5 is under 150 (and that's assuming you can reach redline - I'm not sure it can). But, the car is lightweight, perfectly balanced, and the weight is very central in the frame.

    My experiences in my MX-5, specifically, are as follows. The car is modified. It has upgraded shocks, springs, sway bars (though not a big upgrade), intake, exhaust, and flywheel. It's very nimble and a sheer joy to drive. It has enough power to be fun, but not enough to impress anyone in a straight line. But, as soon as I ask the car to turn a corner, the fun starts. It's very communicative and holds around corners very well. When it does break loose (which it does quite a bit for me on the stock tires), it's very predictable and easy to bring back in. This third generation MX-5 has a lot of improvements for comfort over the older cars. I can't really put my finger on many specifics, but everything from the stereo to the climate control is just... Better.

    From a "passenger comfort" standpoint, though, it's not going to be close to the 911. When Nugget and I go for a casual drive in the 911, with me as a passenger, I'm able to just sit in it and relax. I couldn't do that in my '94 Miata or in Nugget's old ///M Roadster. I can't do that in my new MX-5, either. All three of those cars constantly remind me I'm riding in a sports car. The 911 lets me relax, while not letting me completely forget.

    The 911 will be better at high speed, too. It's geared for high speed. It's shaped for high speed. It is a high speed car. The MX-5 is not. Even with six gears in the MX-5, I'm easily hitting 4,000 rpm on the freeway. Second gear tops out at 53 mph in the thing. I've had my MX-5 up to 100, and it felt solid enough, but it didn't leave me wanting to track the car.

    To me, as an MX-5 driver, the 911 feels large. It doesn't feel excessively heavy like some cars of that weight feel, but it does feel large and it doesn't feel as tossable as my MX-5s have.

    As a perhaps less touchy-feely perspective, both Nugget and I raced our cars at our group's most recent autocross. The results are linked from this page: I, in the MX-5, was .204 seconds slower than Nugget in his 911. Our "pax" times (the times adjusted for the different vehicles we were in) were a mere .004 seconds apart. So the 911 was a bit (around two tenths of a second) better than the MX-5 on that course. That's not much, but autocross emphasizes handling/cornering at lower speeds, rather than the higher speeds found on race tracks.

    I don't have experience with the retractable hard top, specifically, though I've heard good things about it. You could probably find a lot of specifics about it at, if you haven't already looked there.

    In short, the MX-5 is an incredibly fun car to drive. It's less polished than the 911 and isn't as capable of the high speeds the 911 can do, but considering the money and limitations, it's a hell of a car.

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    Very interesting to read your in-depth MX-5 report. Thanks

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    Equiraptor - I very much enjoyed reading your 'article' - Thanks

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    Very nice write-up

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    Thanks all for your experiences with another, although very different, sports car.

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    Interesting essay given the wrong question. Is there a straight way to compare lemons with oranges and then get a solid answer? Sorry for using the GIGO expression despite your remarkable writing skills. Definitely it wasn't your fault

    Re: Mazda Miata experiences...

    Yeah, cheers for the write up! Makes me wish i bought an mx5 back in the focus instead :-(



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