Used Mazda MX-5 2015-present review

Category: Sports car

Section: Advice for buyers

Star rating
Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Mazda MX-5 vs Toyota GT86
  • Mazda MX-5 vs Toyota GT86
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)
  • Mazda MX-5 vs Toyota GT86
  • Mazda MX-5 vs Toyota GT86
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Advice for buyers

What should I look for in a used Mazda MX-5 sports?

The Mazda MX-5 was praised when it came out for having a leak-free roof – something that sports cars haven't always been able to boast about over the years. If you test drive an MX-5 and want to check the roof for leaks, head to an automatic car wash and put the car through a cycle.

Being small, it should be easy to park. But, because the driver sits quite low,  low bollards or walls can be overlooked, and rear parking sensors aren’t standard unless you get the Sport Nav. Check the bumpers for scrapes because it can be costly to put paint damage right.

Used Mazda MX-5 Open (15-present)

What are the most common problems with a used Mazda MX-5 sports?

Under shield bracket

Some examples built between 26 May and 6 July 2015 could have an issue with a metal bracket used to keep the under shield in place failing. A dealer will be able to check if your car is affected by this and arrange to have a replacement bracket installed free of charge.

Automatic gearbox

If your MX-5 has an automatic gearbox and was built between 5 October 2016 and 22 November 2018, it might downshift into a lower gear when you didn't ask it to. A technician at your local Mazda dealer will need to update the software for the gearbox if it is affected by this recall to prevent this from happening. 

Stop/start (i-ELOOP)

In issue with the start/stop (called i-ELOOP) of vehicles manufactured between 15 May 2015 and 13 April 2017 could lead to the system overheating and in extreme circumstances, catch fire. Ask a Mazda dealer to check whether or not your car is affected; if it is, it'll need to have the software updated by a technician and the whole system inspected because certain parts may need to be replaced.

Mazda MX-5 vs Toyota GT86

Is a used Mazda MX-5 sports reliable?

Mazda has earned a reputation for reliability over the years, and in our most recent reliability survey the firm finished in 10th place out of 31 manufacturers. Even more impressive, the MX-5 finished second in the sports car class with an excellent overall score of 93.3%. 

If you would like to see the full reliability list for coupés and convertibles, head to the What Car? reliability survey for more information.

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