Monday, October 2, 2023
Reviews 2023 Mazda MX-5 Review: An Almost-Affordable Triumph in Modern Driving

2023 Mazda MX-5 Review: An Almost-Affordable Triumph in Modern Driving

A Love Letter to the Latest Chapter of an Automotive Icon, the Mazda MX-5


2023 Mazda MX-5 Pros:

– The Mazda MX-5 is a blessing in a world SUVs.

– It’s also a rare drop-top that will never leave you stranded or even wanting for more.

– The soft-top demonstrates that simplicity is still the best way to approach life.

2023 Mazda MX-5 Cons:

– Frankly, the Mazda MX-5 never disappoints. There are no downsides.


I’ve been in love with the Mazda MX-5 since 1989. I have driven every year model since 1999, except for 2019’s, and after spending considerable time with the 2023 MX-5, I can confidently affirm that my love affair is far from over. In fact, it will never end. A vehicular embodiment of joy, the MX-5 continually proves to be the greatest affordable modern driving apparatus, blending styling, exhilaration, and just a touch of nostalgia.

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

A review on a new MX-5 would usually consist in 800 words of loving adoration for what continues to be the greatest affordable driving apparatus in the world. To save you the trouble of reading the following semi-normal review, know that you should buy a new ND Mazda MX-5 now. It’s an extraordinary piece of kit that will never get boring, or old, unlike me… In fact, as I like to say, any generation Miata is a good buy and a good time.


The usual:

Under the hood, the MX-5 remains faithful to its potent 181-hp 2.0L 4-cylinder engine, refusing to get swept up in the horsepower wars that so many other automakers can’t seem to resist. Despite its modest output, it delivers all the real-world power that this lightweight roadster needs, serving up a seemingly perfect balance of performance and thrills. No, you won’t win any drag races, but as any true enthusiast knows, the MX-5 isn’t about raw speed – it’s about the sheer joy of driving.

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

Shifting gears with the six-speed manual transmission is akin to conducting a symphony, with each movement resulting in a harmonious response from the gearbox and engine. The short, crisp shifts coupled with the clutch’s precise bite point continue to make this one of the sweetest manual transmissions I’ve ever had the pleasure of operating. Mazda’s commitment to keeping the manual alive in an increasingly automatic world speaks to their respect for driving purists and their understanding of what the MX-5 represents.

But, it is the experience with the top down where the MX-5 truly shines. Unlatching the roof and letting it fold behind you transforms the MX-5 into something more than a car. It becomes an experience, a communion between driver, machine, and the open road. Akin to a privilege, it’s something that everyone should experience at least once in their lifetime – I’ve said this many times in the past and continue to believe this is true. It’s the embodiment of freedom, the epitome of joy.


The future:

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

As we look towards the future, Mazda has already hinted at the next generation, the “NE”. The iconic roadster will be stepping into the era of electrification with a 48V mild-hybrid technology. Fear not, purists, the heart and soul of the MX-5 will not be sacrificed on the altar of progress. This is not about replacing the MX-5’s combustion engine but about enhancing its capabilities while taking a step towards a more sustainable future. As for a fully-electric MX-5, Mazda maintains that it’s a long way off.


The present:

To all the prospective buyers contemplating whether to take the plunge into the world of Miata ownership, my advice is simple – do it now. With each passing year, the MX-5 cements its position as a modern classic, and as demand remains constant, prices have nowhere else to go but up. There’s no better time than now to become part of the MX-5 story, to understand first-hand the magic that this little roadster weaves on the open road.

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

The 2023 Mazda MX-5 is a testament to the enduring spirit of driving enthusiasm. It continues to be a beacon of affordable fun in an industry that’s increasingly focused on raw numbers and automation. It’s a car that doesn’t just get you from point A to B, but makes the journey something to savour. The MX-5 is the embodiment of the old adage, “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey,” and damn, what a journey it is. And it’s far from over.

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

2023 Mazda MX-5 GS-P | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

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Matt St-Pierre
Trained as an Automotive Technician, Matt has two decades of automotive journalism under his belt. He’s done TV, radio, print and this thing called the internet. He’s an avid collector of many 4-wheeled things, all of them under 1,500 kg, holds a recently expired racing license and is a father of two. Life is beautiful. Send Matt an emai

1 COMMENT

  1. The review of the 2023 Mazda MX-5 highlights the enduring appeal and joy of this iconic roadster. The author’s love affair with the MX-5 since 1989 is evident as they praise its blend of styling, exhilaration, and nostalgia. They emphasize that the MX-5 is not just a car, but an experience that brings a sense of freedom and communion with the open road. The review also applauds Mazda’s commitment to keeping the manual transmission alive, as well as their plans for a mild-hybrid technology in future generations.

    The author’s enthusiasm for the MX-5 is clear as they encourage prospective buyers to seize the opportunity to own this modern classic. They note that as demand remains strong, prices are likely to increase, making now the perfect time to become part of the MX-5 story. The MX-5 is portrayed as a beacon of affordable fun in an industry increasingly focused on numbers and automation. The review concludes with the assertion that the journey with the MX-5 is far from over.

    Overall, the review provides a positive and enthusiastic perspective on the 2023 Mazda MX-5, emphasizing its enduring appeal and the sheer joy of driving 😊

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