The Mazda MX-5 (also known as the Mazda Miata, MX-5 Miata or the Mazda Roadster) is a small, lightweight, two-door roadster produced by Mazda since 1989. Manufactured in Hiroshima, Japan, it is the best-selling convertible sports car in world history. Currently in its third generation, the MX-5 has undergone several changes over the years, particularly cosmetic and mechanical. The vehicle was lightweight and surprisingly economical, though this is generally attributed to the engine that was in use at the time. Over the years the MX-5 has continued its strong sales, particularly among middle-aged men. You can read more about the MX-5 here.
When first introduced the MX-5 came with two different engines and transmissions, one a five-speed manual and a four-speed automatic. Introduced at a time when most small roadsters, such as the Triumph TR7 and Spitfire models, were in decline; really, the only comparable vehicle on the market to the MX-5 was the Alfa Romeo Spider, as all the rest were seeing lagging sales and other models were being introduced by various companies to compensate. This really helped the MX-5’s popularity at the time, as it gave people looking for those types of cars another option to the aging veterans in the market.
Some of the major reasons why people gravitated to the MX-5 was its near-50:50 balance, which led to great handling; as inducing oversteer was not only easy to do, but also easy to control, it became a favorite of amateur stock-car circuits. Many of them also featured limited-slip differentials and anti-lock brakes, also major reasons for its popularity. Traction control was added with the third-generation MX-5 in 2005, and has been a staple of the model ever since. As cars have begun to integrate more technology, the MX-5 has kept pace; in 2012, numerous different special models were introduced, each with different packages both technological and mechanical. A fourth-generation has been in the works since its announcement in 2012, though the third-generation models are still in production as of this writing.
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