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Mazda MX-5 (2010)

by Barry Green,reviewed February 2010

The original Mazda MX-5 forged a reputation for balance and handling and, 21 years later, this lives on despite the latest model being the heaviest of its peerage.
There are four model variants: the Soft-top, Soft-top Touring, Roadster Coupe and flagship Roadster Coupe Sport.

The latter two come with retractable hardtop, offering the best of both worlds: security (being harder to break into) and a cosier drive (better noise suppression and insulation), yet with the delights of open air motoring at the push of a button. The hardtop is quick and easy to put up or lower, taking just 12 seconds, and does not take up boot space when stowed, as it recesses elsewhere. A wind deflector mounted behind the head rests eliminates most of the buffeting that otherwise might spoil the top down driving experience.

Our test car came with standard six-speed manual, a gearbox renowned for its slick shift, but there’s an optional six-speed Activematic. The 2.0-litre powerplant provides enough ‘oomph’ for the driver to enjoy the MX-5’s great chassis and dynamics, but so capable is the overall set-up that it could easily handle more. The steering is accurate and communicative, the ride firm but compliant, the grip levels tenacious and the brake pedal progressive and unfaltering. Little wonder the MX-5 has written its way into the record books as the biggest-selling sports car of all time.
Mazda MX-5 2010


Dynamic handling, balance; retractable hardtop


No spare tyre, hard seats

Key features

Leather sports seats, 17-inch alloys, electric folding hardtop, limited slip differential (manual only), six-disc CD player with MP3 compatibility


Anti-lock brakes, dual front and side airbags, fixed rollover hoops, electronic stability control

Car Details

Vehicle make Mazda
Vehicle model MX-5
Vehicle type Sports Under $80,000
Year 2010
Price when new $53,655 (Roadster Coupe Sport) MLP
Current price range $ - $
ANCAP crash rating
4 out of 5 stars

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Approved Repairers

Our expert team of approved repairers can perform general and specialist repairs, including auto-electrical, air-conditioning, radiator repairs and automatic transmissions.

Engine 2.0-litre, 16-valve, double overhead cam (DOHC) four-cylinder
Max power 118 kW @ 7000 rpm
Max torque 188 Nm @ 5000 rpm
Acceleration to 100 km/h 9.3 sec (as tested)
Braking from 80 km/h 23.3 m (braking, as tested)
Economy ADR 8.1 litres/100 km
Emissions rating
3 out of 5 stars

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This review is based on road testing conducted by The Road Ahead. Further vehicle reviews, in-depth comparisons and coverage of consumer motoring issues can be found in the Club's magazine. Prices listed were current at the time of review and are manufacturers list prices and do not include statutory and delivery charges. Prices can vary from time to time and dealer to dealer.