New Member… just sold my NC any advice on buying an ND?

  1. My model of MX-5 is: __NC 1.8
  2. I’m based near: __Cardiff
  3. I’m looking for technical help or recommendations on: __Buying an ND
    I’m looking to buy an ND and keep it for about 10 years….
    Should I buy one without all the bells and whistles? Or just the basic 1.5?
    The 1.5 or 2.0 engine?
    High or low spec?
    Apart from the usual rust issues… what should I be looking for?
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Get out and drive both, see which suits you better. Smaller than the NC inside.
Some say the 1.5 is more pure and revs better.
The 2019 on 2.0 184ps revs more freely.
However I had a 2018 2.0 160ps and always found it very good.
Some early 2.0 models with higher miles have gearbox issues, so buy a later one of you can.
Some rear hub bearing issues on early higher mileage models.
Some of the prices of later models are so high you might as well order and wait for a new one, of your budget allows.


Thanks for the advice, do you think a minimal spec’ed car would be better in the long run?
Thanks in advance

That’s like asking how long a piece of string is.:man_shrugging:
We all have different tastes, budgets and opinions.
Personally, for me nowadays I wouldn’t buy a car without aircon, heated leather seats, glove box (:wink:) and that’s just for starters.
You could buy a low spec car, but nine times out of ten you will regret the nice comfort’s in a car if you don’t have them as time goes by……
Best to take the financial aspect out of the equation, particularly if you are going to keep it for that amount of time.
Then you have resale and I reckon that more people would be interested in buying a higher spec car too.
As above, drive them all and pick the one that floats your boat.
Service history is also important and don’t always rely on Main Dealer stamps as there are a lot of very good independent and indeed owners who look after the car far better (and I include myself in the latter).
Good luck.:+1:
Just an opinion.

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As people say I would look at both engines. Personally I like the 1.5 and that’s what I went for. Spec wise I chose a sport. I had an NC 2010 with cloth seats and thought they hadn’t aged too well and therefore wanted to go leather. The keyless entry and Bose are also nice additions I think. I’m not aware of any specific issues but I do feel (and I maybe in a minority) I would rather buy one from Mazda directly - I’m not a massive lover of supermarkets and as a minimum you get a year warranty from Mazda dealers.

1.5 SE-L Nav offers the best balance between having enough features and not going too far up the complexity path.

I’m a known advocate for the 1.5 as it gives you more of fun elements of the car (engine up the rev range, making good use of the gearbox) that better match my typical B and A road driving profile and returning pretty good economy whilst doing so.

You really need to drive both, ideally over the same roads if possible to make an informed decision.

I would certainly agree about the 1.5 and driving both. Over the same roads and same day is a great shout and should enable you to rule one out there and then. Try not to leave it too long between drives too.

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I completely agree.
I drove two same models of MX’s on the same day and they were both different in handling and engine response.
Using the same roads as well👍

I bought a 2016 sport nav 2.0 and i’m very happy with the spec.

If it were me, I’d avoid the base model with the “tiny” radio screen. (SE?)
I really think the larger touchscreen of the rest of the models (from SE-L?) is a big step up in living with the car as a daily driver.
The later models came with Apple Carplay / Android Auto and you can retrofit it to earlier models (about £350 at a dealer) - or buy the kit for about £100 if you’re brave and do it yourself…
You’ll love the car, whatever you get - and I haven’t experienced other specs to speak authoratively - but if I was buying again, I’d make sure it had the touch screen as I use Google Maps or Waze on it as my go to satnav…
The only other suggestion I’d have is that there was a limited edition Recaro model with recaro seats that people rave about… Might be worth a bit of a look…

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Is it a daily driver or just a weekend fun car?

If it’s a daily you’ll appreciate some luxury, mobile phone mirroring, lane keeping assist, blind spot assist, parking sensors, reversing camera etc.

If it’s just a fun car, I personally wouldn’t be so bothered, as it’s more about the actual driving experience, not the toys.

I am biased,

Mine is my daily car so I went for 2.0 as it makes motorway driving more relaxing- the 1.5 isn’t slow but in my opinion requires more effort than I like on the motorway

However having driven both engines before I ordered I can understand the love for the 1.5 as it has to be driven harder cross country it felt more alive more like a mk1?

I went for the sport tech, so all is the creature comforts.

I didn’t drive an RF as for me a soft top should be just that!

Having said all of that I don’t think there is such a thing as a bad ND


Thanks everyone for your advice! I’ve decided to go for the whole deal, the 2.0 sports Nav…
I hope I enjoy it as much as the 1.8 NC.


Hi Ian.
I’m sure you won’t regret it. Good choice.

I’ve had a 1.5 sport nav soft top and enjoyed it massively. My other car at that time was an Octavia VRS and the little MX-5 always felt a bit on the slow side. My cat loved the ST roof though and I was forever having to clean off cat fur!!!

3 years later and I’ve got a 2019 2.0L RF sport nav this time. It really gives me the thrill, that extra bit of speed and torque is just right for me. It pulls so well from low down it makes lazy driving a breeze. Give it a bit of a squeeze and it comes to life. What’s not to love :joy::joy: