If you are looking for an extremely fun, beautiful, versatile roadster then purchase the 2017 MX-5 RF Launch Edition Mazda. I made my purchase on 2/9/17 and am already addicted to this car. I actually crave driving it (I've never craved driving a car before!). Don't worry about the professional reviews of the cons being that the RF is of a heavier weight (due to hardtop) than the soft top, that only part of the roof stows away and that there are blind spots. The heavier weight is not noticed at all when driving on city/hwy roads. Maybe if one were to take the MX-5 RF onto a race track one might notice a nano-second difference in 0-60 time but how much race track driving will one be doing (for most of us, very little if any). That only the top portion of the roof stows away is in my mind a pro not a con. As another reviewer noted, he was able to enjoy driving with the top down when the temp was in the 40's. I experienced the same thing. Initially thought I'd have to wait for warmer days to drive with the top down but was able to do so very comfortably when the temp was in the 50's so in my mind this is a plus as I'll be able to enjoy more driving days with the top down. Don't worry about the blind spots (all cars have blind spots) and b/c this car is loaded with safety features that lets you know if someone is in your blind spot and when you wander past lane markers etc (not that I lane-wander when driving, but it's nice to have these alerts). If anything, with all the electronic alerts (that you can adjust to your liking) your blind spots have been essentially neutralized. Cons: I owned 2 RX-7's back in the day & miss the extra room they offered but for the money and intended purpose of the car, this car is the best in its price range currently available. Another potential con would be that if you are over 6' then you might find the cabin a bit cramped. I'm not, so I'm comfortable, but notice that people over 6' don't have a lot of wiggle room in the car. With a Launch Edition, I plan to baby this car so that with time it becomes a 'classic'. Bottom line... This car is a dream to drive and the fun factor is off the charts! :)
Once you're in, the seats are great, but getting in and out can be a chore. After a lot of practice, it gets easier. This is the price one pays when driving a low-slung high performance car. Press on the gas and you take off like a shot. Hit the Brembo brakes and you stop quickly. Driving around the mountain passes where I live is bound to put a smile on your face. The handling is great with good steering feedback. For a non-turbo 2.0L engine, it really goes! The shifter is short-throw and a delight. The transmission is up for anything. Clutch is good but abrupt sometimes. I really love this car!
The RF is definitely a different open air experience. I've owned soft top, open-all-the-way convertibles for the past twenty years, and even with the windows up, there's a narrow temperature range where you can feel comfortable driving open top. But the RF is an outlier. I picked up my Launch Edition car ten days ago and figured it would be awhile before I could drive here in the Long Island winter with the top down. But after driving a short while today with the bright sun beating down and warming up the cabin, I decided to test the roof for the first time. Even though temperatures were in the 40's, I was pleasantly surprised. With the top down, windows up and heat set to 72, I was quite comfortable zooming around the local streets. It obviously would feel a bit different at highway speeds, but at least I know that I can enjoy what the car was made for more often. A caveat, though, if you're thinking of buying one: take a test drive with the top down to make sure it's the type of open air driving feel that you want. Also, I'm not going to comment on the driving dynamics yet, as Miata always gets good reviews in that respect and it's only a short time for me so far. Bottom line is that as one person I'm very happy with the car - love the styling and it's the first of its kind.
It's a really fun sportster. Small in dimensions but loaded with technology and ability. Not particularly friendly cockpit. Gauges in awkward places. Six speed manual tranny keeps you constantly busy... but hey...that's what it's all about... just not for rush hour. Roof is terrific but creates blind spots. Not made for tall or large people. Still too new to completely rate.
"2017 MX 5 RF Launch manual tranny Drove 4 states to find this gem. Superb vehicle, daily driver through the Blue Ridge, 50 mile round trip at 39 MPG!! Interior finish quality exceeds expectations, fits like a glove for 5 ft 11, unique seat construction contours around you. Bose system includes speakers in the headrest with resonate surround sound, and very user friendly navigation, infotainment software. Exterior paint in gray is exceptional: shimmers like molten liquid. Acceleration, cornering, responsive steering and braking are spot on. This coupe with open top option far exceeds early 2000 boxter , or 1980 Spitfire in my rearview past. Routine maintenance costs will not be the dumpster fire that a $350 oil change Porsche entitles itself to. Keeps this 60 yr old heart pumping, and with its agility, lane departure, blindspot and rear cross warnings, safe on the road. Mazda rocks!"