26 city, 34 highway, 29 combined
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The 2020 Mazda MX-5 Miata sports car comes in seven convertible trims, including two special 100-year anniversary editions boasting elegant throwbacks to classic Miata style. It also includes a mix of both traditional convertible and retractable fastback (RF) options, and gives you the choice of manual or automatic transmissions.
This impressive range of options means there is something for every aesthetic. For instance, the entry-level Sport trim has a manual soft top, a seven-inch touchscreen display, a six-speaker stereo, and a CD player, while the mid-range Club package adds Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration, plus a BOSE® sound system.
Meanwhile, the 100th Anniversary model pulls out all the stops with leather seats, parking sensors, lane departure warning, and other modern amenities wrapped in a sophisticated package.
All 2020 Mazda MX-5 Miata trims come with a 2.0L, 181 horsepower engine. Those specs may appear standard on the surface, but imagine how that will feel when you consider that the 2020 MX-5 weighs in at just 2,350 pounds — lighter than many other sports cars out there. That lower weight also gives it an edge on fuel economy; it gets an EPA-estimated 26 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway.
Miatas may have deceptively small interiors, but they've got everything a driver needs and then some. All trims come with a spacious 43.1 inches of leg room — more than some SUVs — and a comfortable 37.4 inches of headroom. The gearstick, pedals, and dials are all in exactly the right place to offer up a truly engaging driving experience.
Still listen to CDs? Needs handsfree Bluetooth® connectivity? Want to hook up to Apple CarPlay? Need a top-line sound system? There's a 2020 MX-5 for you. Because of the wide range of trims and add-ons, you have the power to choose what kind of audio and navigation features you need from your sports coupe. This means you can soundtrack your next top-down road trip however you wish.
You can never go wrong with a Miata, but the 2020 MX-5 is especially fun. The classic convertible look combined with tactile steering and rapid response time work together to give you a deeply satisfying ride. That's true on both the automatic and manual models, the latter of which shows off smooth, easy shifting. Whichever you choose, you'll love the low center of gravity and light-on-its-feet feel of the MX-5.
If you're in the market for a fun driving experience that won't break that bank, then the Mazda MX-5 Miata is the car for you. For over 30 years, Mazda has been cranking out these fun little roadsters, and if you're in the market for a used Miata, Ryan ZumMallen from Edmunds is here to run down what you can expect when it's time to buy one. This is our review of the Mazda MX-5 Miata RF.
The Mazda Miata is a convertible roadster that comes in two roof styles: a classic convertible soft top and a power-folding hard top. The soft top allows for quicker handling, but the hard top offers better security and a quieter interior. The interior of the Miata is small, but the controls are easy to use and reach. However, people over 6 feet tall will most likely find themselves a little squished due to the lack of legroom and headroom. But let's face it, you're not buying the Miata for practicality or road trips.
4.8 out of 54 customer reviews
RepairPal gave the Mazda MX-5 Miata an overall reliability rating of 4 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Excellent. This rating ranks Mazda MX-5 Miata 9th out of 27 among Subcompact Cars.View RepairPal's full rating of the Mazda MX-5 Miata
Rear Wheel Drive (2WD)
This article focuses on the 2016-2021 Miata, which is the fourth-generation car. You might read or hear people refer to this generation of the Miata as the ND, which is Mazda's corporate designation for this generation. The original Miata generation was dubbed the NA, and the lineage progressed through the successive NB, NC, and now ND generations.
There are two Miata versions for this fourth generation: the regular Miata and the Miata RF. The regular Miata has a traditional convertible soft-top roof. It's not power-operated, but the process to lower or raise it is quick and easy.
The Miata RF, which debuted for the 2017 model year, has a power-operated hard-top roof. But not all of its roof disappears into the bodywork as you might expect—only its overhead roof panel and rear window retract. In other words, the Miata RF's bodywork buttresses and horizontal bar behind the passengers remain in place at all times. This fixed bodywork means that the Miata RF has a more coupe-like profile but doesn't deliver quite the same open-air experience as the regular Miata.
Every fourth-generation Miata has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. For the 2016-2018 model years it produces 155 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque. On 2019-2021 models, the muscle is increased to 181 horsepower and 151 lb-ft of torque.
The Miata comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission, and a six-speed automatic is available as an option. All Miatas are rear-wheel-drive only.
The Miata is sharp, responsive, and fun as all get-out. Compared to the previous-generation NC Miata, the fourth-generation ND Miata is actually smaller and lighter by about 150 pounds. This light and diminutive roadster is easy to control and exciting to toss into turns. There isn't a ton of power under the hood, but it's entirely appropriate given the car's mission. And since the Miata offers a greater level of feedback and driving feel than the vast majority of modern cars on the road, you can easily enjoy yourself without driving dangerously or exceeding the speed limit.
Comfort, however, is not a strong suit of the Miata. While it does provide a smooth ride for a car of its stature, you will certainly feel bumps in the road reverberate through the cabin. Most glaring is the issue of noise, especially if you are driving the soft-top version. While the ND Miata has improved in this area compared with previous models, it remains a noisier car to drive on the highway than most other vehicles.
The Miata is a sports car through and through. To maximize its capabilities, some models come with an upgraded sport-tuned suspension and a limited-slip differential. The former helps you better carve around turns with precision, while the limited-slip differential can enhance traction when you're accelerating at low speeds or out of turns.
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