In an era when cars seem to be gaining heft, it’s to Mazda’s credit that its fourth-gen car is shorter, the same height and, in some specs, lighter than that ground-breaking original. Not that any of the intervening iterations could be accused of obesity.
And so what if it has become the default choice for anyone wanting a fun, affordable sports car? Its popularity has bred a passionate community of owners, none more so than here in the UK. But perhaps that’s only natural, since the MX-5 was born out of a love and appreciation for classic British sports cars.
This enthusiasm explains, at least in part, why 550 of the 3000-strong production of this 30th Anniversary Edition – the 52nd(!) special-edition MX-5 – are UK-bound. Of those, 370 will be roadsters, as here, the rest RFs.
It’s based on the 2-litre, 181bhp Sport Nav+, and for your extra £3000 you get Racing Orange paint, bespoke forged-aluminium Rays wheels, black wing mirrors, orange brake calipers and Brembo front brakes.
There’s also an Alcantara-wrapped cabin with Recaro seats and orange highlights; it feels as pleasingly minimalist as the original, but still packs the expected 21st-century tech.