Not to mention that rowing through the six-speed gearbox is just such a joy. The stubby gearlever is easily reached and flicked, compelling you to perhaps shift a little more often than you otherwise would, just to feel the fantastic linkages at work. Plus, the power being what it is, you’re going to want to row those gears a little more as you do your best to keep everything on boil.
Of course, the big story with the 2016 MX-5 – as has been the case with MX-5s since they first landed – is its performance in the bends. Which, safe to say, is as precise as it looks, what with its wheels pushed all the way to the corners, those skinny headlamps and that Jag-F-Type-mimicking rear end.
Left-right-left-right-left… I could probably do this all day, as addictive as it is to nail every possible apex on my favorite roads in this car. There’s just something about looking out and using the front fenders as aiming reticles, and just watching as the road flows underneath. Even though that 6’3” frame of mine may stick out a little over the windscreen, that low-to-the-ground feeling remains, as does the added speed sensation that comes with that. I still felt like I was right at the centre of everything as the road unfolded ahead of me to the horizon.
Would I like to be able to get the rear end to step out more on occasion? Perhaps – the centre of gravity is so low and the track so wide that this is no easy task, especially in the dry. I guess there’s something to be said for being able to better carry out a slide or two, but it’s a sacrifice I’m happy to make for just how easy it is to get comfortable with the chassis, and how well it works in the day-to-day.
So if you’re of taller ilk…
3 years/unlimited distance; 5 years/unlimited distance powertrain; 7 years/unlimited distance corrosion perforation; 3 years/unlimited distance roadside assistance
I have to say, I was quite relieved to find that I would have very little trouble living with an MX-5. I wouldn’t use it as a daily driver, but then I don’t really know how many do, if they’re Big Guys or otherwise. Especially if they live in the parts of Canada that face snowy winters. Which, if we’re honest, is pretty much everywhere. The bottom line is that the pure, essential, fun drive that the MX-5 has always presented is still there. It’s just that now, you should have no trouble enjoying it even if your shirt has an XL tag on it.
Pricing: 2016 Mazda MX-5 GS
Base Price: $35,300
Options: $4,700 – Sport Package ($4,400), Metallic Paint ($300)
A/C Tax: $100
Price as Tested: $41,895
NRCan Fuel Consumption: 8.8/6.9 City/Highway