A very mercurial car. Fun to drive on smooth roads, but the shorter sidewalls of the 17" tires result in a very stiff ride and really hurt the front end grip on rough roads. The car has good power, but only at wide open throttle and under full boost, which doesn't kick in until about 4500 rpm. With a fuel cutoff at 6500 rpm, the powerband is VERY narrow, so expect a LOT of shifting if you're going to drive it aggressively. And don't make the mistake of shifting early - falling out of full boost on an upshift can really upset the balance of the car. Same brakes as the SE MX-5, so they feel underpowered with the extra weight of the Mazdaspeed. Lots of potential, but it misses the mark.
Looks good. Handles well on smooth roads.
Fuel map is awful. Fuel pump is unreliable (my second is failing). Intercooler is too small. Powerband is too narrow. Shifter is too short and notchy. Even with a 6-speed, top gear is too short. 17" inch wheel/tire package is too heavy and detrimental to handling on uneven pavement. Brakes are weak.
I've owned approximately 10 Mazdas and they've all been extremely reliable and wonderful cars. In 2001, I bought a Miata LS w/6 speed and ABS and all I wanted was a little more power which the good folks at MazdaSpeed now provide. I actually considered an S2000 but after test driving it and the MS MX-5 I preferred the Miata because it FELT faster and had way more torque at low RPM. It definitely pulls harder in the higher gears without needing to downshift and the interior quality is far superior to the Honda's. Also, the stereo is an awesome sounding 6 CD BOSE system which is much better than the Honda's single disc factory unit. Keep up the good work, MazdaSpeed. I look forward to the MS 3!
Cruise control should at least be optionally available (packaged with the leather) and the suspension should be adjustable as in the old MX-6 GT. The brakes should be larger (use the ones from the Mazda 3s) even though the stopping distances are quite short.
The price for this performance is out of this world. I do want a rollbar, it only feels a little unsafe. But if you're careful, this car is a VERY enjoyable ride and if you live somewhere where the winter is short enough (even NY is tolerable if you have tires), this car is out of this world. It looks like a Z3 and a Corvette at points (vette in the side view mirrors, you'll see). the tranny is excellent, clutch light, car nimble and handles great, really a 50-50 go cart.
VERY short gearing. Rock hard suspension, Easy convertible top. Wheels look insanely big, the car looks incredible, not to mention the smoked headlights and metal "Mazdaspeed" door inserts.
Tilt wheel would be so nice, I'm tall. Hard top should be an option, as with roll bar. Stereo is nice but not what I was expecting. Doesn't matter, this car is perfect in almost every other way. There is no space, but that's what you have to expect in buying it. Simply awesome I'm tellin you.
The price and performance of the
Mazdaspeed Miata are amazing. The
little IHI turbo is exactly what the
Miata needed to make it more aggressive,
and it pulls hard above 4000 rpm, all
the way to redline.
The extra power, excellent sound system,
easy-to-use convertible top, and
The boost in the car seems a little
laggy for such a small turbocharger. I
expected the power to come on earlier
and more smoothly.
I got mine back in April right off the
truck. It's the greatest car I've ever
owned! The only complaints I have with
it are that I wish it had a key hole
light, and cruise control. The shifter
takes some getting used to. The
tendency is to over guide it when all
it needs is pushed back and forth with
a bit of side pressure for 1-2 and 5-6.
The car gets 32 mpg on the highway, and
24 mpg in town. It has just a bit of
oversteer, with none of the body flex
that my '91 model had. The ride is kind
of brutal on the freeway, but that's to
be expected. Just make sure you're
pointed in the right direction and
there's no cars in front of you when
the turbo kicks in!
Acceleration, gas mileage, fit and
finish, and awesome handling.
It could use better interior lighting
and cruise control.