Driver size MX5 ND

I currently drive an old MX5 Mk3…NC

I’m in a position that if I want too I can change to the later model Mk4 ND…

I haven’t sat in or tried the NC due to the lockdown but that will change hopefully in the coming month or two.

But I’ve read that the driver space is smaller limiting the size of the driver. I only just fit into my old Mk3…

I’m a big fella. 6.4 and 18 stone. I’m wide but not fat. I spend a lot of time in the gym. So big not fat.

So ND owners tell me am I likely to fit into the later cars or am I going to be sticking with the older model.

Thanks :+1:

Edited to add it would be the soft top version only

My response from a related thread (I am 16.8 stone):

In summary, try before you buy as it is definitely smaller!

I’m 6’2”, 15 stone and when i sat in an RF my head permanently touched the roof. Fortunately i never wanted the RF and only wanted a soft top which is slightly more generous on the head room. I ‘fitted’ in the soft top, roughly speaking, but i have since lowered the seats by 1.125” which has made a good difference and also reduced the steering wheel to 330mm which has given me a whole load of space between my legs and steering wheel bottom compared to the standard setup.

Prior to lowering the seats, i always felt like i was sitting on the car rather than in it.


I just edited my post to say soft top only :+1::+1:

HI Charliefarlie. Not meaning to be offensive, but I think that your seat (b-utt) might be the problem area, the width the seat of my ND at the top of the cushion(?) is 34cm at the front and 31cm at the back with the raised edges to hold you in place, so if you’re broad of beam…

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Is that for the standard or Recaro seats @Countryboy?

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I’m not wide in the ■■■■… Not exactly thin either just kinda average…

No offence taken. I’ve never sat in any car seat that I’ve found restrictive but some seats I’ve found narrow in the upper shoulder area. Plus of course height can be an issue.

Guys I do realise I have to go and try a car but as above it’s not that easy right now. I very certainly won’t be putting a deposit on a car no matter how attractive or well priced until I have a drive.

I expect some of you Mk4 owners will have owned Mk3s which is why I asked :+1::+1:

The ND2 has an in out and up down adjustable steering wheel which may help, the ND1 only goes in and out.
I’m 5’10” and just over 14 stones and tbh I’m glad the cockpit isn’t any smaller.
I’m not sure if recaro seats make any difference to space - there maybe more room with the standard ones. I guess you’ll have to try one.
Hope it works out for you.

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…it’s definitely “tight” in an ND. I am 5’ 10’’, and “wide 'ish”. Seat not quite fully back, probably one notch short. I find the seat a little less supportive than our NB so I recently got a back support of Amazon, (yet to test it in anger…)

…just have a test drive and you will know fairly quickly!

That is on the Recaro seats on my 30AE, but I don’t think the standard seats on my ND SE-L Nav were much different.
To put it into perspective I’m about 5’ 8" tall and 10st. and I measure 37" around the hips (b-utt) of which about 12"/31cm is the width of my beam, and the seats fit like they were tailor made!

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Before I bought an MX5 I found a local garage (a car supermarket) that had a few MX5’s in stock. They were happy to let me sit in a few. The ND is more snug than an NC.

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Have both on the drive at the moment, my NC2 and an ND I am currently preparing for sale. I used to have a Recaro edition ND and found it so cramped at 6’3 and 105kg so I went back to an NC2.

Times moved on, I lost a little weight but not height, so thought I would try the ND again in case I wanted to move across. Still a litlle small but manageable which could mean there is a difference between the recaros and the normal leathers. I still find the area cramped and my knees just a little too close to the dashboard, but the steering wheel is just not in the right place for me. When my hands on the top and I raise my fingers to wave or something, I’m smashing them against the glass! Maybe its time to try an ND2 with the telescopic feature

The NC is just a more spacious car

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Hi, 6’ 2" and 15 stone, long legs, ND is a none-starter, particularly as we tend to drive long distances. Just not enough leg room. Can’t sit for long periods in the passenger seat in the NC due to the footwell being that much shorter. I think I would recommend a longish test drive before committing.

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Theres a passenger seat in the NC? I never noticed !

I’m 6’4" with 44" chest and ‘vary’ around the same weight. I drove my ND1 down through France, with my wife, and back with no issues even managing to bring back a few litres of wine from the local vineyards :rofl: I now have an ND2 and I raise the steering wheel to is top position and full rake out (i.e. towards me) and I am fine. I always try to wear a hat as my hair does tend to rub the underside of the soft top (when its closed which isn’t often) and leaves some behind which doesn’t looks great!. I only ever have an issue when my daughter drives the car and leaves everything set for her so I can’t physically get in the car :face_with_raised_eyebrow: But everyone is different so try before you buy.


The screen in the ND is 3" nearer the driver than in earlier versions. I found I was constantly touching the screen accidentally until I got used to it.


I’m 6’2" 17 stone and fit in a nd2 rf. It’s tight and I had to fit paco seat lowering brackets so my head didn’t hit the roof when I hit a bump. It also helped seeing under the rear view mirror which I found was in the way before.

The standard seat is snug, but in a good way I find. My main issue is getting out of it, I was using my right elbow to kinda leaver myself up… I now have a dent man coming to fit the little dents I left in the body( wow the metal is thin). Woops

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6’5" and 90kg here, I have an RF with Recaro seats, now I’m not going to say there is plenty of room, but I fit OK, have done several European road trips with some days up to 10 hours of driving, haven’t ever been uncomfortable, the one thing I would change is the size of the steering wheel, as its an ND1 car it doesn’t have a telescoping steering wheel and my knees are a bit too close to the wheel, it can be fixed with a Guardian design smaller diameter wheel but they are a bit too expensive for me.

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