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Reader test: Mazda MX-5

2009-11-06 08:02

Roger Silva

After driving German cars for most of my motoring experience (my first drive was my father’s BMW 316i, my first car was a 2000 Opel Corsa 140iS which was traded in for a 2002 VW Golf TDi Highline), there came the moment when it was time to trade in again at the point where I reached my thirties.

I stumbled on the Mazda MX-5...

A 2006 Galaxy grey soft top Mazda MX-5 roadster with 45 000km on the clock. It was in perfect condition to the point that after the test drive, I purchased it immediately.

The build quality is superb. Externally it has no body roll, all panels are tightly fitted and no squeaks from the suspension or engine (the 2.0l MZR with an engine brace).


Interior, the materials are very much high quality with soft leather and the dashboard featuring a “piano-black” trim. There are also subtle touches of brushed aluminium and leather bound gear lever with aluminium finish and sporty, leather bound steering wheel with audio control with the spokes in aluminium finish.

The car itself boasts everything to semi-auto climate control, heated seats (allowing you to drive with the top down even on slightly cold weather), trip computer, dual front airbags and side airbags and a Bose Hi-Fi system that reads the ambient noise of the cabin when the roof is up or down.

This car truly has sporting capabilities with most journalists giving a 0-100km/h figure of between 8.2 - 8.5 seconds, I believe the manufacturer's claim of 7.9 seconds is closer to the truth when you don’t have all the testing equipment.

It has the best handling with only subtle under steer that can be countered with controlled acceleration and the car’s traction control, ABS and EBD. The steering gives excellent feedback, edging one to go a bit faster, it inspires you to drive and lets you take control.

The sports suspension and low profile tyres combined with a very low ground clearance makes one feels the road bumps a little more but it remains composed even at high speeds.

Great service

With a heavy foot (which one usually finds himself with behind the wheel of a car of this nature) it does become thirsty, but on average the 50l fuel tank will give you a range of between 450-500km. 95 unleaded is strictly recommended.

Another major plus is the after sales service which to me has proved that Mazda has the best client service available. Everything is checked thoroughly and the car is returned looking brand new!

All in all, this car has given me the most inspiring drive I have ever encountered in any car. It’s attractive (still gathering looks from young and old alike) and a few encounters with other jealous drivers who think that driving a sports car makes one a snob, when in reality it’s a car that brings a person to life!

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