Okay, this might sound a little befuddling, but bear with us: with its hard-top roof and extra sound proofing the Mazda MX-5 RF is quieter than its soft-top sibling, which was the whole point of its existence, but we still wouldn’t recommend you buy one instead of the MX-5 Convertible.
There’s reason to this apparent madness, though. You see the RF is quite a bit pricier than the Convertible, so we would expect it to be a lot quieter with its roof closed at speed. And yes, road noise is vastly improved, but wind noise is still pronounced once you reach about 70mph.
It fails to get better when you open the hard-top as well. Only the roof section and rear window fold away, leaving the ‘fastback’ section in place behind you. Certainly this creates a cocoon that helps shelter you from wind buffeting, but once you hit 60 or 70mph, the wind whistles around the frame and creates more wind noise than you’d get from the Convertible. This is a real disappointment.
The RF does match the Convertible’s slick gear change, though, and the positive clutch and brakes enable you to drive it smoothly. Both engines have a raspy exhaust note which, rather than being an annoyance, merely validates the RF’s sporty credentials.
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