As we have noted in years past, if you are looking for a two-seat convertible roadster full of performance focused fun – that is also affordable – your choices continue limited in today’s marketplace.
Fortunately, the folks at Mazda still offer their iconic Miata MX-5 two-seat soft-top convertible roadster with rear-wheel drive and 6-speed manual shift full of performance fun and affordable as well.
For 2022, a Mazda MX-5 Miata Roadster convertible – rear wheel drive and manual shift – can be yours for just under $35,000.
Recently the folks at Mazda sent us their 2022 version of the top-of-the-line Grand Touring for a week-long drive through the Hill Country environs near Austin and Lake Travis in Texas.
Much the same as the 2021 model we tested last year – this MX-5 came fitted with fresh really rich – Terracotta Nappa Leather seating and equipped with their new Kinematic Posture Control to enhance road driving performance.
Right up front, we will tell you the MX-5 Miata Roadster is not our choice for a daily driver – going to work every day – rather, if you are a traditionalist for weekend ‘road’ driving, this baby is for you.
To that end, the Grand Touring trim moniker is maybe bit misleading. A bit snug on in the driver leg tunnel and short on cargo space, you would not want to do long road trips in this baby. Putting that notion aside, the 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring is just right for lots of fun driving in and around Central Texas.
Our test MX-5 Grand Touring arrived in a Machine Gray Metallic with Terracotta Nappa Leather seating and Black convertible soft top.
The MSRP was $32,300. Adding the Machine Gray Metallic finish and Terracotta Nappa Leather seating, this 2022 Mazda Miata MX-5 Grand Touring Roadster arrived in our garage for $34,210.
The 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata Roadster remains both iconic and classic in its styling.
We really liked the distinctive look of the Machine Gray Metallic exterior contrasted with the Black Cloth Manual Z-Folding Convertible top. Body Color front and rear bumpers, door handles and Heated Power side mirrors along with the alloy wheels complete what could be considered a refined look.
LED Headlights with Auto On/Off, LED Daytime Running Lights and LED Combination Taillights more than adequately light the way for this two-seater.
Other notable features include Rain Sensing Windshield Wipers, a Glass Rear window w/defroster, dual exhaust and an Aluminum Hood and Trunk Lid.
The MX-5 Roadster is a spirited driver – powered by a 2.0L SKYACTIV-G DOHC 4-cylinder engine producing 181 horsepower @7,000 rpm w/151 lb.-ft. of Torque @ 4,000 rpm. Delivering through the SKYACTIV 6-speed Manual Transmission w/Short Throw Shifter and equipped with a Torque Sensing Limited Shift Differential – the Miata MX-5 is quick.
Top speed is rated at 143 mph and – we are told – acceleration (0-60 mph) is reported to be sub six-seconds.
Its Sport-tuned 4-wheel Independent Suspension w/Bilstein Shock Absorbers gives a firm yet comfortable ride. The Double-pinion Electronic Power Assist Steering is very responsive. Equipped with 11-inch front ventilated / rear solid disc braking – stopping is firm.
The MX-5 is sure-footed as well, running on 17-inch Alloy Wheels mounted w/P205/45R17 High Performance Tires.
Featuring Traction Control, Dynamic Stability Control and the new Kinematic Posture Control, we found our nicely balanced MX-5 handled some of our local serious ‘twist and turn’ Hill Country roads quite nicely.
Kinematic Posture Control
The 2022 MX-5 Miata with Kinematic Posture Control (KPC) deepens the sense of connection between the driver and car.
KPC is an all-new technology developed by Mazda that manages different vehicle systems to help MX-5 perform as a harmonious extension of the driver’s body without adding a single gram of weight, says Mazda.
For ride comfort and stability during everyday or spirited driving, the MX-5’s rear suspension is already designed to help keep the vehicle planted to the ground when the brakes are applied. KPC takes advantage of this and applies a very slight brake to the inner rear wheel during high-g cornering.
This pulls down on that corner, suppressing body roll, and making steering response feel more linear through tight or rough corners. Slightly stronger braking is used when accelerating through a corner, enhancing the limited slip effect.
With KPC, the MX-5 – already an engaging and nimble road driver – adds more precise dynamics on more spirited roads. Sure to please road enthusiasts.
The very rich looking Terracotta and Black interior was nicely executed with artfully placed Piano Black and Chrome accents. Of note was the Piano Black Back Seat Bar Trim.
The new Terracotta Nappa Leather Sport Seats featured 3-level heating and good manual forward/rear and recline adjustment. The very adjustable Tilt & Telescoping Leather Wrapped steering wheel was equipped with w/audio-cruise controls. The well positioned Short Shifter and Parking Brake were wrapped in matching leather. Located immediately behind the seats was a Mesh Aero Board Wind Deflector.
Other features included Push Button Ignition, Advanced Keyless Entry, Automatic Climate Control, Power Windows and Black Doorsill Trimplates w/stainless steel inserts.
There are a nice range of technology and infotainment features in the 2022 MX-5 Miata Roadster.
A Bose AM/FM 9-speaker Audio w/AudioPilot system delivers. Featuring 9-speakers including driver and passenger headrest and subwoofer, a speed sensing volume control maintains the volume at speed – top up or down.
The 7-inch Color Touchscreen Display at the top of dash utilizes and easy to operate Multifunction Commander Control to manage all of the infotainment and or system operation elements.
Mazda Navigation w/Traffic Sign Recognition is embedded. Other feature elements include SiriusXM, Traffic and Travel, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, Wireless Apple CarPlay, HD Radio, Bluetooth Handsfree Phone/Audio and more.
If you are bringing along other entertainment or other devices there is a 12volt power outlet and 2 USB input jacks.
Important safety and driver assistance elements in our 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata Roadster included Integrated Roll-Bars, Side-Impact Door Beams, Dual Front Air Bags, Front-Side Impact Air Bags, Adaptive Front-Lighting w/High Beam Control, Blind Spot Monitoring, Lane Departure Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Traffic Sign Recognition, Smart City Brake Support and Tire Pressure Monitoring.
MX-5 Miata Roadster Lineup
The 2021 MX-5 Miata Roadster comes in three trim levels: Sport (MSRP $27,300), Club (MSRP $30,800) and Grand Touring (MSRP $32,800). Sharing the same power plant, all three come standard mated to the SkyActiv-MT 6-speed manual transmission. A 6-speed Sport Automatic Transmission w/Paddle Shifters is available on the Grand Touring (only) for $500 more.
Learn more about them all at: https://www.mazdausa.com/vehicles/mx-5-miata
KEY DATA: 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata
- Model: MX-5 Miata
- Trim Grand Touring
- Class: Roadster
- Convertible Top: Manual Z-Top Folding Cloth
- Seating: 2
- MSRP: $32,300
- As Tested: $34,210
- Engine: Skyactiv-G 2.0L DOHC 4-cylinder
- Horsepower: 181 @ 7,000 rpm
- Torque: 151 lb.-ft. @ 4,000 rpm
- Transmission: Skyactiv 6-Speed w/ShortThrow Shifter
- Drive System: RWD w/Torque-Sensing Limited Slip Differential
- Top Speed: 143 mph
- Suspension: Sport-Tuned Double Wishbone (F) / Multi-link (R)
- Brakes: Ventilated 11-in Disc (F) / Solid 11-in Disc (R)
- Wheel size 17-inch Alloy
- Tires 205/45R17 High Performance
- Fuel Economy 26/34/29 mpg city/highway/combined
- Fuel Tank 11.89 gallons
- Range 345 Highway Miles
Source: Mazda press materials and writer drive reviews of 2021 and 2022 Mazda MX-5