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Old 11-19-2012, 10:46 PM
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Andrew*Debbie Andrew*Debbie is offline
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Location: Anglesey
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,257
Mein Auto: Leaf Tekna
Originally Posted by desertpilot View Post
Anybody move up from a Miata to an E89?
We owned a 3rd generation MX-5 Miata back in the US and own an UK spec e89 now. We had a MINI Cooper between the MX-5 and the Z4.

Your wife's '03 NB Miata is a different car from a new one. The current NC MX-5 Miata has been around since model year 2006. Mazda appears to have delayed the 4th generation ND. Lastest rumor is 2014.

The e89 and NC are very different cars.

The NC MX-5 and your wife's NB Miata are close to pure sports cars. An MX-5 is a car you wear, not a car you get into. There isn't much room but on the NC everything is in exactly the right place. The MX-5 is a simple car. There aren't many controls and they are all right at your fingers.

Pedals are perfectly placed to heal and toe.
Hand brake is perfect. No hill start assist on the MX-5 but hand brake or heal toe starts are very easy.

The 6 speed manual transmission is very slick and much better than any BMW. I could shift mine with a single finger. It was more like flipping a toggle switch. 1st and 2nd are very low ratios on the 6MT. Makes for very easy in-town driving although autocross racers don't like the ratios. While 167HP may not sound like much, the MX-5 only weighs about 2500 lbs. 0-60 is about 6.6 seconds. That is about the same as our Z4 sDrive20i but a US spec 30i would be one second faster.

Weight makes all the difference. Not only is the car light, but Mazda did a very good job of distributing weight. As much as possible, heavy parts are low and towards the center of the car. The MX-5 is fun to drive. Handling is very quick and the car does well right up to the limit. Our 2006 didn't have stability control. For 2012 DSC and Traction Control is standard on all trim levels. Without stability control the MX-5 is unpredictable past the limit. I've been told simple suspension mods will improve handling at the limit. If you drive like an idiot it is easy to loose control. That won't happen in any sort of on-street driving, even in a panic. I'm talking about taking the car out on a track and doing something stupid.

The radio is easy to use and doesn't sound half bad.

The soft top mechanism is a masterpiece of design simplicity. It is very easy to use. I could raise and lower the manual top from inside the car. The top does not take up any space in the trunk. Same with the power hard top. it does not take up space in the trunk.

The ride is very stiff. Stiffer than our MINI Cooper. Very very stiff. The MX-5 will beat you up on long trips. You can get enough into the trunk for a road trip it but only if you use duffel bags or fitted luggage.

If your wife fits in her Miata now, she will like the seats in a new MX-5. A lot.

Did I mention how much fun it is do drive?? The MX-5 is fun to drive. I don't think I can say that enough.

Statistically one of the most reliable roadsters ever built. Absolutely first rate build quality and fit and finish. Our '06 was very early production and had 2 issues. Both were handled by recalls and won't happen to a 2012.

Negative Points:

The uninsulated soft top is noisy at speed. Rain makes the noise worse.
The low temperature limit for the soft top is fairly high. As I recall the owners manual said not to raise or lower the top below 45 degrees. Annoying on those sunny winter days when I wanted to lower the top.
The car gets scary past about 80MPH. I only went above 80 a couple of times.
Not the best car to be a passenger in.
Impossible to custom order -- Had to take what rolls into dealer stock.
Most options are tied to trim bundles. There is very limited choice of what goes with what.
Interior can get hot with the top down. Most trims and colors come with black seats. Top down airflow isn't great. I ran the AC a lot.
The interior, while well done, is obviously budget. The carpet felt cheap. The floor mats were a total joke and wore out in less than 2 years.

Mazda dealer experience is not as good as BMW. I had a hard time finding a decent salesperson but finally did. Service wasn't as good either, but that could be down to the individual dealership.
The models and equipment (standard and optional) illustrated in this post reflect my misunderstanding of vehicles supplied by BMW AG to the German market. In other EU member states, the truthyness of my posts may vary. Please ignore this post. Subject to change.

Last edited by Andrew*Debbie; 11-20-2012 at 04:24 AM.
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