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by Tim Beissmann

The 2.0-litre version of the 2016 Mazda MX-5 will start at $34,490 plus on-road costs when it reaches Australian showrooms in November.

The larger-engined variant will arrive roughly three months after the 1.5-litre entry model, which officially launches today from $31,990.

Mazda Australia is offering both the 1.5- and 2.0-litre versions of its all-new, fourth-generation MX-5 in base Roadster and high-grade Roadster GT specifications, and with six-speed manual and automatic transmissions, creating eight variants in total.

The engines on offer are a 96kW/150Nm 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol and a 118kW/200Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol. Combined cycle fuel consumption ranges from 6.1 to 6.4 per 100 kilometres for the smaller of the two, and between 6.9-7.1L/100km for the larger. Mazda hasn’t released official 0-100km/h times.

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Mazda is charging a $6000 premium to step up from 1.5-litre Roadster to 1.5-litre Roadster GT, and $5060 to go from 2.0-litre Roadster to 2.0-litre Roadster GT. The automatic option adds $2000 in all cases.

As expected, the base Mazda MX-5 1.5-litre Roadster package ($31,990 manual, $33,990 auto) is lightly equipped. Highlights include 16-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights and tail-lights, a limited-slip differential (manual cars only), push-button start, cruise control, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel, gear lever and handbrake.

This variant is the only one to miss out on Mazda’s impressive MZD Connect infotainment system, making do with a basic six-speaker audio system with AUX and USB audio inputs and Bluetooth phone connectivity with audio streaming.

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The 1.5-litre Roadster GT variants ($37,990 manual, $39,990 auto) gain MZD Connect, which incorporates a 7.0-inch touchscreen display, multi-function commander control, satellite navigation, internet radio integration (for Pandora, Stitcher and Aha), RDS program information, and an enhanced nine-speaker audio system with premium Bose 203-watt amplifier and speakers.

Additionally, the GT specification brings auto headlights and rain-sensing wipers, keyless entry, heated mirrors and seats, climate control, black leather upholstery, and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror.

Stepping from 1.5-litre Roadster to 2.0-litre Roadster ($34,490 manual, $36,490 auto) adds all the MZD Connect features as well as larger 17-inch alloys, larger 280mm front and 280mm rear brake discs (up from 258mm front/255mm rear), and LED daytime running lights.

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The flagship 2.0-litre Roadster GT ($39,550 manual, $41,550 auto) comes standard will all of the features listed in the above two paragraphs.

The new range structure and pricing means the most expensive variant in the new line-up is $5730 cheaper than the entry point to the old third-generation range ($47,280 for the base manual).

The new $31,990 entry point makes the fourth-generation model the most affordable MX-5 since the original, which started at $29,550 in 1989 and crept up to $32,315 by 1992.

Comparisons with the original don’t stop at the price, either.

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The new MX-5 is the lightest model since the first-gen roadster, weighing as little as 1009 kilograms, making it just 69kg heavier than the original, and 91kg lighter than the model it replaces.

The new model is the shortest MX-5 ever, measuring 3915mm from nose to tail (40mm less than the original, 105mm less than previous model). Its height is identical to the original (1235mm, down 10mm from third-gen), while it’s wider than ever (1730mm, up 10mm from previous model and 55mm from original). The new car’s 2315mm wheelbase is 50mm longer than the original but 15mm shorter than its direct predecessor.

Despite its shrunken external dimensions, Mazda claims the new MX-5’s internal dimensions have grown compared with the previous model, with a longer, wider and deeper cabin.

Six colours are available across the 2016 Mazda MX-5 range: Soul Red, Ceramic, Crystal White Pearl, Jet Black, Meteor Grey, and Blue Reflex.

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Mazda Australia is forecasting sales of approximately 125 per month during the new MX-5’s first year on the market. It expects 60.0 per cent of those sold to be manuals, and believes more than two thirds will opt for the GT specification. It predicts the Roadster GT 1.5-litre manual and Roadster GT 2.0-litre manual will be the most popular variants, both accounting for 20.0 per cent of total volume.

Read CarAdvice’s 2016 Mazda MX-5 Review.

 

2016 Mazda MX-5 pricing (before on-road costs):
Roadster 1.5-litre manual $31,990
Roadster 1.5-litre auto $33,990
Roadster GT 1.5-litre manual $37,990
Roadster GT 1.5-litre auto $39,990
Roadster 2.0-litre manual $34,490
Roadster 2.0-litre auto $36,490
Roadster GT 2.0-litre manual $39,550
Roadster GT 2.0-litre auto $41,550

 

2016 Mazda MX-5 powertrains:
1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine
Six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions
96kW at 7000rpm
150Nm at 4800rpm
Combined-cycle fuel consumption: 6.1L/100km manual, 6.4L/100km auto

2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine
Six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions
118kW at 6000rpm
200Nm at 4600rpm
Combined-cycle fuel consumption: 6.9L/100km manual, 7.1L/100km auto

 

2016 Mazda MX-5 specifications:
Roadster 1.5-litre:
16-inch alloy wheels
258mm front/255mm rear brake discs
Limited-slip differential (manual only)
LED headlights and tail-lights
Cloth soft-top
Black cloth upholstery
Leather-wrapped steering wheel, gear lever and handbrake
Cruise control
Push-button start
Six-speaker audio system
Bluetooth phone connectivity with audio streaming
AUX, USB audio inputs

Roadster GT 1.5-litre (adds over Roadster 1.5-litre):
Auto headlights
Heated mirrors
Rain-sensing wipers
Heated seats
Black leather upholstery
Climate control
Auto-dimming rear-view mirror
Keyless entry
MZD Connect infotainment system with 7.0-inch touchscreen display
Nine-speaker audio system with premium Bose 203-watt amplifier and speakers
Internet radio integration (for Pandora, Stitcher and Aha)
Multi-function commander control
RDS program information
Satellite navigation

Roadster 2.0-litre (adds over Roadster 1.5-litre):
17-inch alloy wheels
280mm front/280mm rear brake discs
LED daytime running lights
MZD Connect infotainment system with 7.0-inch touchscreen display
Nine-speaker audio system with premium Bose 203-watt amplifier and speakers
Internet radio integration (for Pandora, Stitcher and Aha)
Multi-function commander control
RDS program information
Satellite navigation

Roadster GT 2.0-litre (adds over Roadster 2.0-litre):
Auto headlights
Heated mirrors
Rain-sensing wipers
Heated seats
Black leather upholstery
Climate control
Auto-dimming rear-view mirror
Keyless entry




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