Happy birthday Mazda MX-5 limited run of bright orange models to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the world’s most popular soft-top.
Thirty years ago, at the 1989 Chicago Auto Show, Mazda revealed its two-seater soft-top MX-5 to the world. Among the road-ready standard models there was a bright yellow ‘Club Racer’ version. It was equipped with wide arches, special wheels and the pop-up headlights were replaced by sleek fixed units instead. It was there to show what the MX-5 could be turned into with a few performance tuning goodies. Little did Mazda know just how prophetic that car would turn out to be.
So it seems fitting that this yellow car was the inspiration for the 30th Anniversary model that Mazda has recently unveiled at the this year’s Chicago Auto Show. The bottom line is this special edition will be limited to just 3000 models worldwide. Of this figure, we’re only getting 600 in the UK, split between 400 convertibles and 200 RFs (Retractable Fastback).
Every UK-spec 30th Anniversary MX-5 will have a 148PS (141bhp) 2.0-litre Skyactiv-G engine under the bonnet, attached to a six-speed manual gearbox. They’ll also have a strut brace up front and a limited-slip differential at the rear to further aid traction.
In addition to the special upgrades, each one will be individually numbered. A special plaque mounted inside the car will indicate the precise build number, while the bespoke forged wheels made exclusively for the car by tuner favourite Rays wheels Japan is probably the highlight of the upgrades. The convertible model goes on sale at £28,095, while the Retractable Fastback RF attracts an additional premium making it £29,985 on the road.
IN CAR ENTERTAINMENT
A Bose Audiopilot 2 sound system packs each car with no fewer than nine speakers. The setup features something Bose calls Truespace technology, with a pair of speakers built into each headrest – something you’ll definitely appreciate with the top down. It’s worth noting the Mazda connect system in this special edition MX-5 supports apple Carplay and android auto
Specially-tuned Bilstein dampers are fitted to every 30th anniversary model, combining with the exclusive forged aluminium wheels. Mazda claims the Bilstein dampers provide an even more controlled yet refined ride. we’ve driven Bilstein-equipped NDS before and they were very good indeed
RAYS FORGED ALUMINIUM ALLOY WHEELS
Lightweight, high-rigidity wheels co-developed by Mazda and rays wheels exclusively for the 30th anniversary model. The design is based on the rays ZE40 forged aluminium wheels used by all global MX-5 Cup Racers. In Japan, the convertible version gets 16in wheels and the RF 17in, but in the UK and across Europe we’re getting 17in wheels on both models. This special set of wheels is called the ZE40 RS30 and is only available in this dark gunmetal colour
These sexy Recaro seats are two very good reasons to buy the 30th anniversary model. They feature orange stitching and piping, with premium materials worthy of a special edition. It’s worth noting the orange stitching is continued throughout the interior, including the lovely Alcantara dash trim. Not to mention the racing orange detailing on the upper section of both doors and the heater vents. It will make you feel special
RACING ORANGE PAINT
Every 30th anniversary MX-5 will be finished in racing orange, a unique shade of gloss paint that is intentionally non-metallic, inspired by that original club racer NA. The vivid orange body is offset by piano black detailing on the door mirrors and throughout the interior
This is the first time Brembo brakes have been fitted to a UK-spec MX-5: four-pot aluminium calipers on the front with matching discs and low-carbon steel pads, while the rear brakes feature Nissin calipers and similar discs and pads. All four calipers are covered in racing orange, peeking out from behind the spokes of the gunmetal rays wheels