The Mazda Miata MX-5 is largely unchanged for the 2012 model year, with the only significant change being the inclusion of traction control as a standard feature on all models. The iconic roadster continues to sell well for Mazda, having outlasted numerous competitors, including the Toyota MR2, Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky since the Miata made its debut in late 1989 as a 1990 model.
The lone engine option for the 2012 Mazda Miata remains the 2.0L MZR with 167 horsepower. The MZR engine produces 140 lb-ft. of torque and redlines at 7200 RPM. When one opts for the optional automatic transmission, the horsepower rating drops to 158.
The Miata’s rear-wheel drive setup and low-curb weight (the 2012 Miata’s curb weight starts at just 2,447 pounds) make it an ideal weekend car. It clings to twisting curves like no other vehicle in its price range can, and accelerates effortlessly.
The snick-snick sound of the short-throw shifter makes shifting the Miata’s transmission an exciting affair, and its ideal position on the center console keeps the driver comfortable.
The 2012 Mazda Miata comes in three trim levels: Sport, Touring and Grand Touring, with buyers able to choose from the traditional soft top or the PRHT (Power Retractable Hard Top).
Even the base Sport model comes with plenty of equipment, including side-impact airbags, a CD/MP3 player, auxiliary audio jack for portable media, and power windows. The Convenience Package, standard on Touring and Grand Touring models, is optional on the Sport. It brings power-door locks, remote keyless entry, cruise control and steering-wheel mounted audio controls.
Other optional packages include the Appearance Package, which adds a front air dam and side-sill skirts, and a Premium Package which adds features like Sirius Satellite Radio, Mazda’s Advanced Key system and Xenon headlights.