1997 Mazda MX5 1.6 (90 bhp) from UK and Ireland
Replaced the original Mazda vinyl hood after eleven years, and a new set of original OE 14" Mazda alloys to keep her looking smart. Other than that, just keep changing the consumables during servicing.
At 60,000 miles, Mazda recommends new bushes, mine seem fine.
The end of the line for the Mazda MX5 MKI was the poverty spec 1.6 (90Bhp). Slower than its bigger, often better appointed 1.8 130 Bhp sister. However, don't discount it. Cheap insurance, 42Mpg and only 940Kg; the car is still hilariously fun to drive, and that's where it counts. As Top Gear's Mr Clarkson put it, "The MX5 is more fun at 30Mph than most cars are at 100Mph". The Five was never about speed or power, it's all about the handling, and the pure fun of driving a well sorted, nimble, lightweight sports car.
A good useable MKI five currently starts at two thousand pounds, but beware prices are climbing as classic status looms. It's useable and practicable enough to be everyday transport, yet provide thrills at a track day or B road fun at the weekend due to its un-burstable reliability.
Look past its "it's a girls car image" and remember that more MX5's will be racing this weekend on a track somewhere, than any other single model of car in the world.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 3rd April, 2011