Used 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata

2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata
List price range
2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata

Pros

  • Fun to drive
  • precise steering and handling
  • enjoyable manual transmission
  • smartly designed soft and hard tops
  • low price
  • low operating costs.

Cons

  • Engine drone at highway speeds
  • cockpit is tight for taller drivers
  • tiny trunk
  • Bluetooth limited to upper trim levels
  • no USB input.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

After 25 years, the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata is still one of the best roadsters ever built, offering equal parts fun and refinement in a compact and affordable package.

vehicle overview

The 2015 Mazda Miata has stood the test of time. While other small, affordable roadsters have come and gone, the Miata is still going strong. To commemorate the car's 25th anniversary, Mazda has introduced a special-edition car loaded with all the options. But even in base form, there is still a lot to love about the Miata.

Through the years, Mazda hasn't forgotten about the MX-5's primary mission: It is still a fantastic driver's car. It feels connected to the road thanks to a light, well-balanced chassis and plenty of steering feel. The Miata isn't all that powerful, but it is exceedingly fun to drive quickly, especially when you string together a series of corners. And thanks to the available retractable hardtop, the Miata is relatively comfortable and livable for daily commutes as well.

Of course, when you get a small two-seat roadster, practicality suffers, and that's the Miata's biggest drawback. If you're tall, getting comfortable inside could be a struggle. Long vacations may be difficult, too, as the trunk is laughably small and you'll have a hard time fitting anything more than a few small bags. Don't expect too many creature comforts on the inside, either. Even in Grand Touring trim, the Edmunds.com "B" rated Miata's interior is nothing special to look at and hard plastic surfaces are plentiful. Bluetooth is only available on the higher trim levels, and items like a USB input and navigation system aren't available at all. On the other hand, some buyers may appreciate the simplicity of this cockpit, and of course, some of these issues will be addressed in the redesigned 2016 MX-5 Miata.

As far as direct rivals go, Mazda's Miata competes in a segment of one. The 2015 Scion FR-S promises excellent driving dynamics, a bit more power and a low starting price, but it is still only available as a hardtop four-seat coupe. The Mini Cooper and Fiat 500 are available as convertibles and they're a bit better equipped than the Miata (and with two more seats), but neither is as much fun to drive.

While the hatchback and sedan segments are filled with picks for the shopper seeking a car that's both entertaining and supremely affordable, in the convertible segment, just one model fills the bill. A blast to drive and easy on the wallet, the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata is the only choice for the shopper seeking a model that delivers budget-friendly, drop-top driving excitement.

2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata configurations

The 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata is a two-seat roadster offered in four trim levels: base Sport, Club, Grand Touring and 25th Anniversary Edition. All come standard with a manually operated soft top as standard. A power-retractable hardtop (PRHT) is available as an option on the Club and Grand Touring models, and comes standard on the 25th Anniversary Edition model.

Standard features for the Sport trim include 16-inch alloy wheels, a cloth convertible top with a glass rear window, foglights, air-conditioning, cloth seats, a height-adjustable driver seat, a leather-wrapped tilt-only steering wheel, power windows and mirrors and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player and auxiliary audio jack.

The Club trim adds 17-inch wheels, sporty front and rear fascia treatments, black exterior trim, cruise control, power door locks, keyless entry, unique interior trim, a leather-wrapped shift knob, a trip computer and steering-wheel-mounted audio controls. Sport models can be equipped with the Convenience package that includes most of the Club's upgrades (this package is standard in Miata Sport models with the automatic transmission).

Further up the ladder, the Grand Touring offers the choice of a black or beige cloth top and adds automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a seven-speaker Bose audio system with a six-CD changer and silver interior accents. The PRHT models are identically equipped.

Club and Grand Touring models can enhance the Miata's already nimble handling with the Suspension package, which includes a sport-tuned suspension with Bilstein shocks and a limited-slip differential (only available with a manual transmission). The Grand Touring qualifies for the Premium package that features keyless ignition and entry, xenon headlights, Bluetooth phone connectivity and satellite radio.

The 25th Anniversary Edition Miata is essentially a PRHT Grand Touring model with the contents of Premium and Suspension packages equipped as standard, along with unique 17-inch wheels and upgraded leather upholstery.

2015 Highlights

For 2015, the Mazda MX-5 Miata gets a 25th Anniversary Edition trim level. The base Sport convertible now gets a cloth folding top rather than vinyl.

Performance & mpg

Powering all 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miatas is a 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine that produces 167 horsepower (158 with the automatic transmission) and 140 pound-feet of torque. Sport models come standard with a five-speed manual transmission, while Club, Grand Touring and 25th Anniversary models come with a six-speed manual. All trim levels have the option of a six-speed automatic with shift paddles on the steering wheel, and all Mazda Miatas are rear-wheel drive.

In Edmunds testing, a 2015 Miata with a six-speed manual transmission sprinted from a standstill to 60 mph in a reasonably quick 6.8 seconds, and performance is no different with the optional power-retractable hardtop. Fuel economy is about average, with an EPA-estimated 25 mpg combined (22 city/28 highway) for the five-speed manual. The six-speed manual drops slightly to 24 mpg combined (21/28), while the automatic is rated at 23 mpg combined (21/28).

Safety

Standard safety features on all 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata models include antilock disc brakes, side airbags and stability and traction control. In Edmunds braking tests, various Miata models turned in stopping distances from 60 mph between 110 and 118 feet, which are respectable numbers for a sports car.

Driving

Overall, the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata is one of the best-handling cars you can buy for the money. If you've never owned a rear-wheel-drive car before, it's a great starting point. It's also comfortable and easy to live with whether you're looking to simply put the top down and cruise in the summer sun, or leave the top up and embark on a road trip.

The Mazda Miata's calling card, though, is its legendary handling. It can squeeze maximum enjoyment out of any section of winding blacktop, and it owes much of this skill to its communicative steering and well-sorted suspension. Expert drivers might find the car's body roll and stability control intervention to be excessive when pushing hard around corners, but just about everybody else will enjoy its tidy handling.

The free-revving four-cylinder engine doesn't pack a whole lot of punch compared to some other sports cars, but it's always eager to play. Additionally, the short-throw shifts and easy clutch action of the manual gearbox are sublime. A significant downside is the engine drone at highway speeds, and your tolerance for it may vary on longer journeys. Miatas with the hardtop are slightly quieter, but if you're looking for serenity, you may want to think twice about buying a roadster in the first place.

Interior

Average-sized drivers will find the 2015 Mazda Miata's cockpit on the snug side, but still very comfortable. Taller drivers will likely run out of legroom, as seat-track travel is limited. The interior itself is rather basic in terms of design and materials, but at least the gauges are very legible and the controls are user-friendly and well-placed.

Those who choose the manual convertible top will appreciate its ease of use; all it takes is the push of a button and the tug of a lever to liberate the lightweight top from its moorings. It takes just a few seconds to lower the top, and raising it is just as quick and easy. With practice, some longer- and stronger-limbed drivers can raise the roof without even leaving their seat. With the power-retractable hardtop it takes a bit longer to transform from coupe to roadster, but the added convenience, noise isolation and security make it a good choice if you're using your Miata as a daily driver. With either top down, wind buffeting is impressively low even with the side windows down at 60 mph.

Convertibles are notoriously short on trunk space, and the Miata is no exception. With just 5.3 cubic feet of total trunk space available for either hard- or soft top models, there's barely room for a light traveler's luggage and it takes some effort to get golf bags to fit – if they fit at all. Points are also deducted for the disappointing stereo performance when the top is down. Even the upgraded Bose system suffers from poorly aimed and comparatively weak speakers that fail to fill the cabin with sound. The lack of a USB/iPod interface and unavailability of Bluetooth audio connectivity for either system are additional disappointments.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Exactly what I expected
jim dean smith,12/15/2015
I bought this car (2015 MX-5, 5 speed soft top) as a toy, to balance with my Tundra. It is an absolute joy to drive, I look for excuses to go somewhere in it. It is very quick both in handling and acceleration (not fast in straight line acceleration, but fast enough and then some), and corners better than my Lexus IS or any other normal car I have ever driven. I now have a little over 10K miles, absolutely no problem. This is a sports car, not particularly practical, but it is lots of fun, so if you can need a reason to buy one, hopefully I just gave you one. Update, after a year and 20k miles, no problems, although on 100 degree days the ac struggles. But not many 100 + days where I live, so no big deal. Still really like this little car. Update after 2 years, 36,000 I still try to find errands to run just so I can drive this little toy.
Love My 2015 Grand Touring
Joules,04/26/2016
My son is off to college so I gave him my 2014 Ford Escape and bought this little hard top for me. Great excuse right?!? Considering other roadsters out there cost so much more, I can't complain about anything. No wonder this is the best selling roadster of all time! I purchased my 2015 from Enterprise Car Sales - it was a rental and had 19,500 miles on it. I just love it! Every negative point I read on this car, cracks me! It's too small - It's too loud, you can feel the road to much, blah blah blah. It's a roadster so of course it's all those things but it is so much more! It handles like a dream and is so much fun to drive. I joined the local Miata club and did a back road drive to Moss Landing - zoom zoom is right!! The only change I'm thinking of making is putting in a roll bar. But I love this car and people must love them too because it is hard to find a 2015 hard top and that is exactly what I wanted. Can you tell I LOVE IT ;)
Mazda has no air cond***
Gigi Hernandez,07/21/2015
if you are tempted to buy a cute little Miata like I did ... its adorable ... faster than you can dream... everyone loves it ... but there are 3 problems with this car the air conditioning is weak .... it never gets cold !!! Its hot in Oklahoma right now , so I left the convertible top on , turned my air up all the way , kept waiting for it to get cool ... just barely cool... this is a brand new car !! obviously they assumed if you are going to have the top down you wont notice the air conditioner anyway... but its hotter than #%@$$ ...and the paint job is cheap ... it looks like I drive it thru the brush every day ... I live in the city ... there are tiny scratches all over it ... and we when we had ice in Feb the ice actually left a scrape around the bottom of the car... and the last thing is the radio ... it doesnt search out all the stations like my old car did ... and the speakers are not powerful ... I would get the Sirius option for the radio but I have been trying to read the 300 page instruction manual that was obviously written by a 21 year old genius and not meant for anyone else to understand
Car Full of Joy
Doug Shaffer,09/20/2016
We were looking for a hardtop Club with an automatic transmission and found one at the first dealer we visited. The car is exactly what was expected and is a joy to drive with the power hardtop down in sunny weather - we live on an island in Puget Sound with winding roads and gorgeous views. The model we found has an automatic shift, but can be moved freely to something that simulates a standard manual shift, even when underway. There are four steering wheel finger-operated shift levers that you can touch up or down operating the automatic transmission manually. The simulation is quite realistic. Had a Chrysler rag top in Florida and will not go that route again, but this powered hardtop is wonderful. Aside from the quick powered raise/lower and the ease of keeping it clean, the hardtop is not as noisy inside as the rag top. And I'm quite sure that it's warmer in the winter. We really like this little roadster - it brings us a lot of joy!
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Features & Specs

MPG
22 city / 28 hwy
Seats 2
5-speed manual
Gas
167 hp @ 7000 rpm
MPG
21 city / 28 hwy
Seats 2
6-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
158 hp @ 6700 rpm
MPG
21 city / 28 hwy
Seats 2
6-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
158 hp @ 6700 rpm
MPG
21 city / 28 hwy
Seats 2
6-speed manual
Gas
167 hp @ 7000 rpm
See all Used 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata features & specs
More about the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata
Used 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata Overview

The Used 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata is offered in the following submodels: MX-5 Miata Convertible. Available styles include Sport 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 5M), Grand Touring 2dr Convertible w/Power Hard Top (2.0L 4cyl 6A), Sport 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 6A), Grand Touring 2dr Convertible w/Power Hard Top (2.0L 4cyl 6M), Club 2dr Convertible w/Power Hard Top (2.0L 4cyl 6M), Club 2dr Convertible w/Power Hard Top (2.0L 4cyl 6A), Grand Touring 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 6M), Club 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 6M), Club 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 6A), Grand Touring 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 6A), 25th Anniversary Edition 2dr Convertible w/Power Hard Top (2.0L 4cyl 6A), and 25th Anniversary Edition 2dr Convertible w/Power Hard Top (2.0L 4cyl 6M).

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Find a used Mazda MX-5 Miata for sale - 11 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $22,920.

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Should I lease or buy a 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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Check out Mazda MX-5 Miata lease specials