2019 Mazda MX-5 RF & Roadster – Video
How do you make the world’s best-selling, two-seat roadster even better? Mazda’s designers and engineers have found the answer with the 2019 MX-5 Miata RF, which goes on sale later in August.
While its biggest change comes by way of its thoroughly upgraded SKYACTIV-G 2.0-liter engine, which is now more responsive, efficient and powerful, other numerous updates include:
A new, standard tilt/telescoping steering column with 30mm of telescoping and 42mm of tilt range
A switch from a steel to an aluminum steering column to save weight
A new, standard rearview camera
Available Traffic Sign Recognition
Available Smart City Brake Support low-speed automatic emergency braking
MX-5 RF Grand Touring and harder-edged MX-5 RF Club models continue to be the two flavors of retractable fastback, both offering premium style, curb appeal and performance.
MX-5 Grand Touring comes equipped with 17-inch dark silver wheels; body-color interior trim; auto on/off headlights; an auto-dimming driver’s side mirror; rain-sensing windshield wipers; automatic climate control; auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink®; heated, leather-trimmed seats; a 9-speaker BOSE®Premium audio system; Sirius XM Satellite radio with a 4-month trial subscription, Mazda Navigation; Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert; new Traffic Sign Recognition; Adaptive Front-lighting System; High Beam Control; Lane-Departure Warning; and Smart City Brake Support.
Listening to customers’ demands, Mazda will offer a new GT-S Package for MX-5 Grand Touring models equipped with the SKYACTIV-MT 6-speed manual transmission, equipping those models with a front shock tower brace, limited-slip rear differential and Bilstein dampers. MX-5 RF models with the GT-S Package will also come equipped with the hand-painted black roof that had previously only been offered in the U.S. on the 2017 MX-5 RF Launch Edition.
MX-5 Club models continue the two-pronged, higher-trim strategy, offering a harder-edged foil to the MX-5 Grand Touring. MX-5 Club comes with standard Bilstein dampers, shock tower brace and limited-slip rear differential in models equipped with the SKYACTIV-MT transmission. All other MX-5 Club models receive standard heated cloth seats with red contrast stitching, body-color interior trim; Metallic Black alloy 17-inch wheels, front air dam and rear lip spoilers, a 9-speaker BOSE®Premium audio system, SiriusXM Satellite Radio with a 4-month trial subscription and Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert.
MX-5 Club models are available with an i-ACTIVSENSE Club Package that comes with Smart City Brake Support and Lane-Departure Warning.
Additionally, MX-5 Club SKYACTIV-MT can be had with the Brembo/BBS Package and Brembo/BBS/Recaro Package. The Brembo/BBS Package include front Brembo rotors and calipers; red-painted brake calipers on all four corners; 17-inch, dark gunmetal BBS forged alloy wheels; functional side sill extensions; a rear bumper skirt; and heated leather-upholstered seats. The Brembo/BBS/Recaro Package is new for MX-5 RF and replaces the leather-trimmed seats with heated Recaro buckets. It also includes a black-painted roof.
All 2019 MX-5s come standard in the U.S. with a SKYACTIV-G 2.0-liter engine, producing 181 horsepower at 7,000 rpm and 151 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm. That represents an increase of 26 horsepower and 3 lb-ft of torque over the previous model. Thanks to a host of internal improvements, including lighter pistons and rods and a larger throttle, MX-5’s engine produces more torque throughout its rev range and enjoys a 700 rpm higher redline for the new model year. The new engine comes paired to either a standard SKYACTIV-MT 6-speed manual transmission or an available 6-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters and Sport mode.
The 2019 MX-5 RF goes on sale nationwide this August. MX-5 soft top pricing, packaging and on-sale timing will be announced at a later date.
The Mazda MX-5 Miata has never been about power; it’s a car whose sole purpose is to help the driver and passenger fall in love with driving. But, a little extra power never hurts, which comes as one aspect of numerous updates for the 2019 model year.
Mazda’s engineers enriched MX-5’s SKYACTIV-G 2.0-liter engine with the goals of improved response, performance, feel and efficiency. The net results are 181 horsepower at 7,000 rpm—a 17-percent improvement—and 151 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm, with a richer torque curve throughout MX-5’s entire rev range.
Speaking of rev range, redline has increased from 6,800 rpm to 7,500 rpm. Engineers were able to increase performance through several means, including:
Reducing internal mass and friction: Each piston has been reduced 27g in mass, thanks to a minimized skirt area. Connecting rods are 41g lighter than previous units.
Reducing exhaust loss: The upgraded engine carries an increased valve opening angle and valve lift height. The inner diameter of the exhaust manifold has also been increased. The net results are a 30-percent reduction in pumping losses.
Improved combustion: Reconfigured intake ports and new high-diffusion, higher-pressure fuel injectors improve the tumble and swirl of fuel in the cylinder and better-atomize fuel. The benefit is improved efficiency and torque at all rpm.
Dual-mass flywheel: Replacing the single-mass flywheel with a low-inertia, dual-mass flywheel improves smoothness and responsiveness.
A new exhaust system with richer sound quality.
New final drive ratio: The transmission’s final drive ratio has been increased from 3.454 to 3.583 in models equipped with an automatic transmission in order to improve linear response to match the driver’s intentions. Gear ratios are otherwise unchanged from previous models.
As a result of numerous changes, MX-5 is quicker, more responsive and aims to be more engaging to drive, adhering to Mazda’s unique Jinba Ittai—“horse and rider as one”—engineering philosophy.
Beyond engine improvements, the 2019 MX-5 introduces an available brown canvas soft top, new black metallic 17-inch wheels, a newly telescoping steering wheel (30mm of travel), easier-to-open doors and revised door stops and revised cupholders and seat levers.
On the safety front, the new MX-5 will be sold with a new, standard rearview camera and newly available features such as Traffic Sign Recognition and Smart City Brake Support in addition to other i-ACTIVSENSE safety technologies found throughout various trim levels. In the process of gaining many new features, the 2019 MX-5 gains just 7 lbs. from previous models, owing to a strict adherence to Mazda’s “Gram Strategy” and ingenious solutions like adopting an aluminum steering shaft in place of the previous steel unit.
When the fourth-generation MX-5 launched, its development team rallied around the idea of innovating in order to preserve. The latest round of innovations aim to continue that mission.
The 2019 Mazda MX-5 will be available in the U.S. this fall, with pricing, packaging and full specifications to be announced closer to on-sale timing. Details concerning the 2019-spec Global MX-5 Cup racecar will also be announced at a later date.