Mazda MX-5 RF - Has Mazda Ruined the MX-5?

The much-loved manual Mazda MX-5 is no longer on sale in South Africa and customers can now only buy the heavier hard-top MX-5 version. In this review, Ernest Page takes the MX-5 RF for a whirl to find out if it can still deliver the thrills... 

This new, heavier MX-5 is now the only MX-5 you can buy in South Africa. So, the brief was pretty simple: take the new automatic, hard-top Mazda MX-5 RF to the track and put it through a series of scientific(ish) tests. With the roof adding an extra 40 kg to the top of the car, and the automatic 'box reducing the driver's transmission control, we wanted to find out – has Mazda ruined one of the world's most iconic drivers cars?

Our contributor Ernest Page got the nod for this job thanks to his remarkable ability to get a car sideways. And so he set about putting the RF through a slalom, handbrake turn and good old-fashioned drift test. Watch the video to see what he discovered...

Buy a new or used Mazda MX-5 on

Related Content

Mazda MX-5 RF Automatic (2017) Quick Review

Mazda MX-5 (2015) Review

Mazda MX-5 Updated for 2019

2018/19 Consumer Awards – powered by WesBank; Finalists