The New York Auto Show earlier this year was the perfect occasion for Mazda to reveal their new MX-5 RF. Mazda releases this car for the 2017 model year. In addition, it’s a lightly adapted “retractable fastback” version of Mazda’s successful sports model Miata or MX-5. The 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF should be a worthy addition to Mazda’s luxury line.
Mazda figured the combination of a sports car with a hard top convertible was good to broaden their public. Mazda is obviously known for the trustworthy vehicles they produce. However, their aspiration to do well in the luxury range has grown over the past years. Now, Mazda set the goal to continue producing high quality lower-priced vehicles as well as more premium cars. An important factor is that Mazda cars are financially very competitive with luxury brand vehicles like Porsche, Genesis and Lotus.
The 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF body is practically identical to the Mazda Miata. The big difference is of course the fastback retractable roof, which alters the car’s appearance significantly. Although many car manufacturers created convertibles from existing models before, this is one of the few fastback hard-tops out there. With the roof closed, the MX-5 RF has a real coupe look, which is wonderful on this model. Especially since the roof flows into the rear window in a beautiful curve.
Furthermore, present are a noticeable long hood and the curved body lines of Mazda’s KODO design language. The latter has turned into some great end-products already, so we would much appreciate for it to stick around the coming years. In spite of the design language, the MX-5 RF is not as curvy and rounded as the exterior design of the 2016 4C Spider by Italian auto manufacturer Alfa Romeo.
The 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF is going to be available in eight exterior colours, one of which is Machine Grey. This is a new colour that will find its way across more Mazda models that use the KODO design language.
The interior offers the exact same experience as the regular MX-5. Nappa Brown Leather will be available for option while the rest of the interior features remain the same. A seven inch touch screen will embellish the clean, driver-directed center stack. The remarkable round air vents will make their return, that are also found under the infotainment screen on the high class convertible, the 2018 Mercedes AMG GT Roadster. as will the lightly sporty format that is so classically Miata.
Standard audio system will feature four speakers, with radio, USB and AUX input. One trim higher offers a six speaker audio system with radio, CD, USB and Bluetooth Audio streaming. The highest trim comes standard with a BOSE sound system
In the United States of America, the 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF becomes available with one engine. That is the 2.0 liter SKYACTIV-G four cylinder with Variable Valve Timing that makes 155 horsepower. Either a six speed manual or six speed automatic transmission are up for choice.
In Europe and Asia the MX-5 RF becomes available with the smaller 1.5 liter version of the SKYACTIV-G four cylinder. This engine is good for 129 horsepower and comes with a manual transmission only. Top speed lies at 132 mph (214kph).
MZD Connect is the software that operates the infotainment system. Note that the European 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF does not come standard with an infotainment screen on the lowest trim. The HMI-Commander rotary knob operates the infotainment screen.
The i-ACTIVSENSE package is optional and a definite musthave. In the review’s tech specs of the new 2017 Mazda CX-9 the package is discussed. It features a wide range of active safety options. Active safety options includes Adaptive Front Lighting System, that directs the headlights into the direction you’re steering. There’s also High Beam Control and Mazda Radar Cruise Control that follows the car in front. Rear Vehicle Monitoring, Lane Departure Warning and Forward Obstruction Warning are also included. Smart City brake Support and Smart Brake Support help avoid collisions by automatically braking.
The infotainment system has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.
Price and sale date
Prices are not available yet, but European (German) prices are expected to start around €30,000. We expect US prices to start around $30,000 before options. Sale date starts at the end of 2017.