Which is the best model 2.0 ND1?

I understand power is standard at 160bhp, but performance wise; Suspension, LSD? I really like the Recaro edition but what others have the best set up from from factory?

I have a 2018 2.0 ND2 184… The revised engine underwent significant internal revision to “tune” it’s characteristics to suit the MX-5… The 160 engine was initially installed for the US market as they weren’t happy with it being only available as a 1.5! All 2.0 have LSD. I believe the lowering springs was a dealer fit option…

ND1 2.0 SportNav here. Great car. Soul Red with Sand Leather which was exactly what I was looking for. I will say that the standard seats aren’t as comfortable as those in my previous NAs and NC. That said, I’m 60+ like most on here and at the stage when the back can play up on a long run. Recaro seats in the Recaro edition should be a lot more supportive. The only negative point for me on that model is the diamond cut alloys. Lots of reports of corrosion and if you kerb them it is difficult and expensive to refurbish.

My 2018 2.0 sport nav has an LSD and Bilstein dampers.
Although enthusiastic drivers reckon they aren’t much good and lowering springs and stiffer roll bars help.

The Recaro is undoubtedly the best VFM ND1, for the money the spec hasn’t been beaten. The revised engine was “tuned” to prevent the gearbox failures tbh.


Without having the opportunity to thoroughly test each version in various option configurations it’s impossible to come up with an answer.
All I can say is my ND1 2.0 Sport Nav fits me like a glove and is more than sufficient for my level of enthusiasm.

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Agree with GarethC; if it is an ND1 that you are after then there just isn’t a better soft top spec straight out of the factory than the Sport Recaro. If you are also considering an RF then the RF Launch Edition is virtually the same spec with the same Recaro seats.

Many thanks for your responses. The Recaro edition is the one I’m keen on, which I think has just the right package. It’s also nice to have some individuality being a limited run.

Unfortunately due to Brexit, now with increased tariffs/VAT, by the time I import one from the UK, it begins to get close to buying new!

So, apart from the alloys & recaros, wanted to know suspension wise, which model has the same performance; maybe the GT Sport Nav+!?

I have now learned there is a dealer option to get it with lowering springs too, if that applies here.

Yes, Diamond cut are more delicate. But, I put Alloygator Rim Protectors on all my cars.


No RF for me. I love rag top sports cars(although I have a hard top convertible too which I’m very happy with) & the one on the ND is genius!

It’s not just kerbing damage. My brother in law had a battle with the dealer to replace a wheel on his BMW. Less than a year old with a corroded patch half way up a spoke with no damage on the lacquer. While a painted wheel may well have an etching primer, paint and lacquer diamond cut areas just have lacquer.

True. I have come across these as well.

There’s a nice Recaro with loads of nice mods just gone on eBay. I’ve had dealings with the gent who is selling it and he’s one of the good guys.

All the usual problems have been dealt with. Was interested to see the following line in the ad -

4 Brand new recaro wheels replaced under warranty due to lacquer peel

I rest my case!

Looks a great car

That does look like a sweet deal!

I try to avoid diamond cut alloys, had some on an Accord from new, within a year they were bubbling, and I’d coated them with Gtechniq C5 and always only washed them with car shampoo no acid, still went bad.

Sport Recaro, I had the wheels respray anthracite


We have had several cars with diamond cut alloys and nearly all of them I have had the dreaded white worm as I call it, but we currently have a 3 year old Kia Sportage with them and we have not had any problems with them at all, even though the two front ones have very slight kerbing marks, so some companies can get it right!

Looks great. Someone else had their Recaro wheels refurbed in silver which also looked good.

I think that’s the way to go. Make the most of your diamond cut wheels until they start to look rough. If you can get them replaced under warranty fine, if not go for a colour of your choice.

I’ve just been very, very careful with mine and kept them clean, waxed and ceramic coated. Not had any problems, but they don’t get driven through the winter months and the car is always garaged.

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