Most people in the market for a Mazda MX-5 RF are unlikely to be planning major commutes in it – a two-seater with a boot so small it is almost filled by an overnight bag (at 127 litres, it has half the cargo capacity of a Smart ForTwo) clearly has limitations.
However, having used it for long-haul work trips, including from our office in Peterborough to Harrogate (130 miles each way) and an epic from Peterborough to Plymouth (280 miles each way), I have found the modest comforts of our long-term test car particularly useful.
Five hours behind the wheel with the road just a few inches beneath you makes you grateful for the cruise control that comes as standard on all RF models.
The speakers in the driver’s headrest are also handy to hear the audio system and Bluetooth hands-free phone system, because tyre noise is quite pronounced at motorway speeds and, with the roof down to enjoy
Britain’s brief sunshine, the journey can be quite blustery.
Sat-nav was unavailable on older generation MX-5s, but buyers now have the option of SEL-Nav and Sport Nav trims. The navigation system is very intuitive, and setting it is quick and simple through the multimedia commander just to the left of the driver.
What’s remarkable is that this car now has equipment traditionally shunned by sports car purists for whom weight-saving is paramount, yet in a package which, at 1.1 tonnes, still weighs almost a quarter less than the next lightest mainstream car in the market. tim rose