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Mazda MX-5 III

Mazda in the case of the MX-5 – this is just “the guy who loudly told someone else’s joke.” The recipe for a commercially successful low-cost roadster was invented by the British, and the Japanese won worldwide fame. We are today, however, not interested in historical justice, but the fact that the Mazda MX-5 combines two very pleasant qualities: rear-wheel drive driving potential and a relatively simple design. Lightweight body, conventional power units from mass relatives … You can buy without fear of investments? Understand the details. In this part, we consider the problems of the body, interior, chassis and electrics, and the second will affect the motors and gearboxes.

The Mazda MX-5 (for the American market, the MX-5 Miata) made its debut in Chicago in 1989, and by 2000 it had become the most popular two-seat open model in automotive history. In Russia, the MX-5 is literally sold by piece, and 8 out of 10 proposed machines are of the 3rd generation (NC), produced from 2005 to 2015. We will dwell on it in detail.

Construction and Evolution
The machine was developed on the platform, in many unified with the model RX-8, fairly gained weight and a little – in size, but this is noticeable only in comparison with its predecessors. For comparison, the first generation weighed 955 kilograms, and the third – 1130. It is still quite a bit. For comparison, the Mazda 3 BK weighs 1340 kg, approximately the same amount of BMW Z4 E85 roadster indirectly competing with the MX-5, and the Mercedes-Benz SLK R171 – a hundred pounds heavier.

The body of the Mazda, despite the small mass, tough enough torsion, and, moreover, durable. Aluminum is used minimally, only for the hood panel and trunk lid, but there is a lot of plastic: the entire front part is made of it, including the front bumper and front panel, many of the internal parts of the body, and most of the aerodynamic elements are plastic. In the design of the suspension in comparison with the ancestors, there is one single innovation: the rear suspension has become multi-link instead of double-lever, which has made it possible to further improve handling, despite the increase in weight.

In 2006, the car had a modification with a folding hardtop, very practical in our conditions – officially only she was selling in Russia.

Modernization of 2008 slightly changed the appearance and affected almost all the technical stuffing. Restayl has slightly different versions of engines, boxes, suspension and brakes, a completely different multimedia system. In 2012, they reworked the exterior and slightly improved safety indicators in the field of pedestrian protection.

As already mentioned, roadsters in Russia do not favor even in the southern regions with a completely European climate, so the choice on the secondary market is very limited. And yet you can buy a car if you wish! If you are lucky – with the original mileage of up to 150 thousand and after only summer operation.

Body and roof
Mazda cars of the beginning of the two thousandth, unfortunately, often had problems with corrosion. A thin layer of paintwork and poor design of the protection of internal cavities has become a huge problem for the first generation Mazda 3 and Mazda 6.

Fortunately, the Mazda MX-5 is usually operated in much more benign conditions and it hasn’t noticed any really serious problems of this kind. But this is not the merit of the manufacturer – the car is painted badly.
It is especially unpleasant to see not painted areas at all: the fastening areas of collapsible blocks and bumper beams, and the insides of the front spars have only a thin layer of soil, often with bald spots — they are open in front, with the front end disassembled, you can look. The remaining cavities of the body are painted barely, inside the thresholds there is no anticorrosive (or it is almost imperceptible).

The sheeting of the bottom is clearly insufficient in area, only the weld seam area is covered. The internal cavities have a large number of technological holes, which allows dirt to accumulate, and in the risk zone just the front spars and the bending zone of the rear spar above the suspension installation site. Add here purely mechanical damage to the bottom, which, with a 124 mm ground clearance, is almost inevitable.

Like any soft-top cabriolet, the MX-5 has problems with interior humidity. Machines before the first restyling have a frankly unsuccessful study of the drainage system of the roof compartment. After restyling, the quality of the side seals of the roof and the cover of the compartment and drain valves were no longer clogged several times a season.

The drain holes of the roof compartment have a valve system that is clogged with debris and sand. Regular wire cleaning helps, but where it is more effective to remove all the valves, then there is almost no chance of flooding the cabin. The noise in the cabin will be a little more, but here and so there is no silence. But the water will go immediately, in any rain.

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