Just like its soft-top sibling, the 2019 Mazda MX-5 RF benefits from a more powerful and efficient 2.0-liter engine, as well as smaller revisions aiming to make it even better.
The biggest highlight is of course the 2.0-liter Skyactiv-G engine, which now produces 181hp at 7,000rpm (26hp more than before) and 151lb-ft (204Nm) of torque at 4,000rpm. Mazda claims that the updated powerplant now offers a richer torque curve throughout the rev range, with the redline also raised from the previous 6,800rpm to 7,500rpm.
Mazda’s measures for the upgraded engine included lighter pistons and connecting rods, improving the combustion with reconfigured intake ports and higher-pressure fuel injectors, as well as reducing exhaust loss and adding a dual-mass flywheel. There’s also a new final drive ratio, which has been increased from 3.454 to 3.583 for models fitted with the automatic transmission.
The range of updates also includes a new tilt/telescoping steering column, a standard rear-view camera and optional Traffic Sign Recognition and Smart City Brake Support. The steering column itself is now made out of aluminum, instead of steel, in order to further save weight.
The range of the 2019 MX-5 RF is still divided between the Grand Touring and the more hard-edged Club versions. Grand Touring models come with 17-inch dark silver wheels; rain-sensing windshield wipers; heated, leather-trimmed seats; a 9-speaker BOSE Premium audio system; a fabric-lined soft top for greater sound insulation; Sirius XM Satellite radio with a 4-month trial subscription, Mazda Navigation; Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert; new Traffic Sign Recognition; Lane-Departure Warning; and Smart City Brake Support, among others.
New to the range is the GT-S package for manual MX-5 RF Grand Touring models, which adds things like a front shock tower brace, a limited-slip differential, Bilstein dampers and a hand-painted black roof.
The more hardcore Club models come with Bilstein dampers, shock tower brace and a limited-slip differential as standard. The cabin is equipped with heated cloth seats featuring red contrast stitching; black 17-unch alloy wheels; front air dam and rear lip spoilers; a 9-speaked BOSE Premium audio system, and more.
Mazda will offer to MX-5 RF Club models the option of a Brembo/BBS package and the option of a Brembo/BBS/Recaro package. The first one adds front Brembo rotors and calipers; 17-inch dark gunmetal BBS forged alloy wheels; side sill extensions; a rear bumper skirt; and heated leather seats. The second pack replaces the leather seats with heated Recaro buckets.