2016 New York Auto Show: 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceConvertible — With a Twist
Some car shoppers desire a convertible but don’t want to give up the security and style of a hardtop coupe. Mazda addressed this issue with the last-generation MX-5 Miata, when it introduced a very slick power-retractable hardtop that takes up little space and weighs next to nothing. So it was only a matter of time before the company offered this feature on the new 4th-generation Miata, and on the eve of this year’s New York Auto Show that’s what Mazda debuted, but it wasn’t exactly what we expected.
Video: Watch the world debut of the new Mazda MX-5 RF in New York

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceRetractable Fastback
When this MX-5 RF rolled onstage at a media-only event on the eve of the New York show, it looked more like a fastback than a coupe, with a targa top and buttresses flowing back toward the rear of the car. When the top is retracted, the car retains the same silhouette, but with the top and rear window stored away.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMore Targa Than Convertible
The roof mechanism has four parts including the rear window. With the flip of a switch, the rear section lifts up while the roof folds with the window, ultimately hidden with only the rear section in place. With just the roof panel and rear window removed, the MX-5 looks more like a targa than a convertible. The top can be operated at speeds up to 6 mph and takes just 12 seconds to operate.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceSame Space
Aside from being slightly taller, the RF retains the same dimensions and proportions of the soft-top MX-5. Engineers were able to utilize the same real estate that stores the soft-top, so trunk space remains unchanged in the new RF. The new hardtop adds around 100 pounds to the overall weight, and Mazda assured assembled journalists that the roadster remains as balanced and fun as it ever was, with suspension specifically tuned for the new RF.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceFun-Filled
Mazda expects buyers of the RF are more likely to drive with the top closed than open. “I hope the launch of the MX-5 RF will awaken hidden emotions and dormant sensibilities among our customers. And with these two MX-5 models, I hope we can help introduce the joy of driving a convertible sports car to a wider audience and help even more people live rich, fun-filled lives” said Nobuhiro Yamamoto, Mazda MX-5 Program Manager.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceQuieter
With a sound-absorbing headliner and additional sound insulation, the cabin of the RF is significantly quieter than other models with the top closed. The interior remains primarily the same as the soft-top, with the exception of the hardtop open/close switch.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceUnique Color
The MX-5 RF on display in New York was a beautiful Machine Gray — a new color originally introduced for the new CX-9. The sides of the roof and buttresses are painted to match the body color, while the top is available in either the body color or piano black.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceOn-Sale Date
Look for the new MX-5 RF to arrive in showrooms later this year. Pricing will be release closer to the on-sale date.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda MX-5 RF

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