We drove a Mazda MX-5 with automatic transmission | Car Reviews

Auto123 tested out the 2021 Mazda MX-five, but with an automatic transmission. Which led to some reflection on the form of consumer who would opt for these a configuration.

See also: 2021 Mazda MX-five Long-Expression Overview

The Mazda MX-five is identified all through the market and specially amid driving fans as one of the most fun-to-generate automobiles out there. Frankly, that is a reality and it truly is simple. All you have to do is get guiding the wheel of this point to recognize.

And it truly is been that way for almost 32 many years.

Not remarkably, people generally affiliate the fun to be experienced guiding the wheel of this design with managing the guide transmission. In excess of the many years, the variations we have been supplied to generate by Mazda invariably came with a stick shift.

But the solution supplying does incorporate an automatic transmission. And what about it? Is the MX-five as fun to generate if you have nearly nothing to do guiding the wheel? It is really a question that is been nagging at me for a when now, enough so in reality that it led me to check with Mazda to see if it was achievable to test generate an automatic-transmission edition.

Well, it was achievable. And I’ll have extra on the encounter a bit afterwards.  But very first I’ll indulge in a very little investigation of the clientele that checks off the automatic transmission when creating their MX-five. Some of the figures are sure to shock you.

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Availability

1st of all, you should really know that the automatic transmission is accessible with each individual edition of the MX-five, just like the guide transmission. And the cost is the exact same in the two instances. So you are not able to position to price or machines to make clear the power or weak point of possibly configuration.

Handbook or automatic?

The MX-five has been sold for about thirty many years, lengthy enough for various trends to mark its historical past. We’ll focus on the figures from the previous two many years, since October 2019, in get to paint a present-day photograph. Because as with so lots of things, motorists’ behaviors and choices alter. It is really clear that buyers were not hunting for the exact same point in the 90s as these days.

In the previous two many years, then, are customers of the MX-five leaning toward the automatic or guide transmission?

From October 2019 to September 2020 (so, 2020 products), forty eight per cent of the Mazda MX-five models sold nationwide were being outfitted with the automatic transmission. A tie, pretty much. From October 2020 to May 2021 (2021 products), there was a slightly bigger desire in the guide transmission as the proportion of automatics dropped to forty one.8 per cent, this means 58.two per cent of customers went for the guide configuration.

This slight uptick in the guide transmission selection, in an automotive sphere where guide transmissions are getting to be rarer and rarer, is attention-grabbing and reassuring.

2021 Mazda MX-5, automatic transmission lever

2021 Mazda MX-five, automatic transmission lever

In Quebec

In my property province, the guide transmission has often been extra well-liked than elsewhere in Canada. On the other hand, the figures notify a shocking tale: about the exact same two intervals as earlier mentioned, the profits percentages of MX-5s with automatic transmissions were being 65.3 and 69.4 per cent, respectively.

Say what? Honestly, I predicted the reverse. Yet another wave of calculations disclosed that 51.4 and fifty three.9 per cent (for 2020 and 2021, respectively) of all automatic-transmission MX-5s sold by Mazda Canada in the previous two many years were being sold in Quebec, when the proportion of mechanical transmission variations was only 25.two and seventeen.1 per cent (for 2020 and 2021).

This is a bit puzzling, because normally Quebec motorists are perceived to have a bigger liking for sportier, extra dynamic driving. To wit, the data also displays that 37.8 and 32.five per cent of all MX-5s sold in Canada (2020 and 2021) were being sold in Quebec. That implies extra Miatas are sold in Quebec than in Canada, for every capita. On the other hand, it truly is crystal clear we’re now preferring automatics right here. As I explained, things change…

2021 Mazda MX-5, three-quarters rear

2021 Mazda MX-five, a few-quarters rear

How about the man-girl divide?

So is there motive to consider possibly gender has a determined preference for one transmission or the other?

1st of all, who purchases an MX-five? Traditionally, this car was once referred to as a “lady’s car”. That’s no for a longer time the case, on the other hand, because at the very least since October 2019 (as a result for 2020 and 2021 products), Mazda sells the car to extra adult males than gals. At the moment, 76.two per cent of customers are male.

But that doesn’t solution the question: Is there a gender break up when it comes to transmission form? Of course and no.

For the 2020 and 2021 design-many years, 64.3 per cent of MX-5s obtained by adult males experienced a third pedal only 22.6 per cent wished an automatic and only that. That leaves thirteen per cent for whom the transmission was less crucial than color or trim.

And gals? The figures present an expanding preference for automatic transmissions, and in 2021 a the greater part have long gone for that selection. It could be that the scaled-down sample size for this yr exaggerates the development.

In any event, for the period amongst October 2019 and May 2021, 45.3 per cent of feminine customers opted for the guide transmission, and 37.seven per cent for the automatic. seventeen per cent gave priority to other factors and experienced no preference for one transmission or the other.

The upshot of all this is that when adult males are considerably extra interested in the guide than gals, the the greater part of the two sexes choose a few-pedal driving when it comes to the MX-five.

Apart from in Quebec. In the previous, the guide was nevertheless chosen, but which is no for a longer time so. Go figure. Perhaps the profits figures of the future couple many years may well present the pendulum swing back the other way…

2021 Mazda MX-5, front

Even now fun?

In this article we are at the crux of the issue. How much fun is an MX-five with an automatic transmission? Definitely, I am not in a posture to be entirely neutral – I bought a 1992 Nissan Stanza with a guide transmission a couple many years ago… just to have the pleasure of driving a car with a few pedals.

For me, the pleasure comes from this form of transmission. On the other hand, objectively, I have to admit that the encounter of piloting an MX-five is nevertheless extremely pleasurable, even if you’re allowing the transmission do the function for you. After at cruising speed, there is no variance if you have a stick or not. And in this configuration, you often have the selection of steering wheel paddles to really feel some handle about the machine.

On a ten-position fun scale, I would set the automatic at seven.five – 8 with the paddles. Because to be trustworthy, the car, its managing, its roof that usually takes two seconds to elevate or lower (literally, it is two seconds, or even less) and its rigid chassis are the components we value most. With the guide gearbox, the pleasure is multiplied tenfold… delivered you like to play with your palms and toes.

In the close, of course, that is what it truly is all about: picking what you choose. And definitely, the figures present which is what customers are accomplishing.

As for people currently undecided about what camp they are in, I have one piece of tips: generate just about every edition to see which one appeals to you extra. Give you that pleasure at the very least.

2021 Mazda MX-5, interior

2021 Mazda MX-five, interior

2021 Mazda MX-5, rear