Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt Our Fleet Test Drive: Mazda MX-5 - 3rd Report Update
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Our Fleet Test Drive: Mazda MX-5 - 3rd Report Update

Date: 24 July 2007   |   Author: Tristan Young John Mahoney

We’re loving the Smartnav

Even our managing director is getting in on the act - shame he hasn't had the weather to make full use of its roof-down capability, though.

24 JULY 2007
Mileage 5370
Forecast CPM 32.5p
Actual CPM 36.9p
Our managing director stole the Mazda away one weekend. He praised the weatherproof roof, boot that swallowed luggage for two, and the way it drove.

10 JULY 2007
Mileage 5088
Forecast CPM 32.3p
Actual CPM 36.9p
We’re loving the Smartnav (£649 £17 per month) install in our MX-5. It’s proved adept at avoiding snarl-ups, athough it’s not sure where London’s congestion charge boundary is.
25 JUNE 2007
Mileage 3710
Forecast CPM 32.2p
Actual CPM 36.9p
Our drop-top is facing up to its first big test – a 800-mile round trip to the Le Mans 24-hour race in France. By the time you read this we’ll know a lot more about the MX-5’s all-round abilities

Main Report

My apology-owed count is spiralling through the roof.

First an apology for misleading you into thinking our adorable MX-5 didn't have any option boxes ticked. It does, and packs a rather excellent, but pricey, Bose upgrade (£555) [1]. Not only is it easily man-enough to overpower the road racket that intrudes roof up on the motorway, but you also get an iPod connector [2] too, which leads me onto my next bout of grovelling. I'm sorry for disagreeing with Apple's former marketing vice president. I was wrong, iPods aren't the antichrist that breeds musical ignorance, and thanks to a Nano I haven't lost a CD in ages.


Now back to the MX-5. Little has been done to reduce the respect and unhealthy attachment we all have to the car despite the increasing miles and familiarity. Some 3500 miles have passed by and the engine has loosened up considerably, with a useful fuel consumption pay-off. We're now averaging 28.6mpg, up almost 7mpg on what the drum-tight MX-5 Mazda delivered a couple of months back.

Not that there hasn't been a few faults, some with the driver and others with the Mazda.

Some drivers have found the cabin cosy, others cramped and lacking elbow room, but all have praised the surprising amount of boot space that's enough for a small family-sized shop and that's unaffected whether the roof is up or down.

A common complaint, however, concerns offset pedals that causes those with larger loafers to brush the footrest when declutching.

The MX-5 remains a joy on a B-road blast; in fact that's all it seems to want to do nowadays. Following a quick dash up and down the M4 our little roadster seems to want to leave at every available exit, pulling mildly to the left. I think it's time to check the tracking.

Finally, in a separate incident, after spending an extra 20 minutes driving around a nondescript industrial estate in the middle of nowhere, I've accepted the old saying that there's no point going quick if you're going quick in the wrong direction. I'm hoping Trafficmaster and more importantly Smartnav, which we'll cover in our next report, can help and end my days of having to say sorry, this time for being late.