If you are a person whose passion is improving his driving skill set, this is a perfect tool. The MX5 will reward you with increasing satisfaction and fun as you learn to master driving skills. Routinely switch off traction control after engine start-up to obtain linear throttle response and to learn the car's traction characteristics. This car is quite capable even in stock form; resist the urge to modify its performance until you have fully utilized all it has to offer.
When you are not in the mood for spirited driving, you can chill and enjoy the scenery and the MX5 will not annoy you with a bad temper.
Some 2008s had a defect in the manual trans. Mazda fixed mine under warrantee. THX!
-mild oversteer, predictable drifting due to near 50/50 weight distribution
-engine likes high revs
-strong brakes with good feedback
-solid chassis integrity
-well designed soft top: easy to convert from the driver's seat in a few seconds. With the top down, the visibilty of surrounding traffic and road conditions far exceeds that of a car with a roof: better visual input= better decisions. I routinely drive top-down. Even in rain and snow the interior remains nearly dry when at 40mph+
-with top down you need a good heater and heated seats; the MX5 has these
-simplicity: In a sports car, less is more. Analog gauge set easy to read. HVAC controls simple. No computer interface
-Ford-designed manual trans could be smoother shifting to consume less of my concentration. Used Motorcraft XT-M5-QS GL4 75w-90 oil in the gear box and improved shifting by 75%
-removed 2008 center console cup holders and replaced with aftermarket cubby
-angled front of seat bottom upwards to increase thigh support using spacers
-replaced stock horn with Nautilus air horn
-I prefer window switches in doors instead of center console
And that's about it! Since I usually ride motorcycles, which are inherently more engaging than cars, I regard most cars just as a mode of transport, but not the MX5. The MX5 is a car that makes you live in the moment yet rewards you with lifetime satisfaction.