2010 Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring

If we haven’t convinced you yet, here's another Miata love letter. After driving Mazda’s two-seater this time around, I am newly smitten. I just can't think of anything more natural in the automotive world -- sitting in and driving a Miata just feels so right. It's your own private heaven, where it just so happens that anyone can see you. And you can see everyone else -- I can't think of another new car with such great visibility, and it's not just because the MX-5 is a convertible: the beltline is low, the A-pillars are skinny, and the doors are thin. The MX-5 fits me like the proverbial glove.

Furthering the pure enjoyment of the Miata is its fantastic gearbox, which feels superb and works well with the car’s high-revving engine. And the best part, as Preston Lerner explored in his "Slow Cars" story, is that an invigorating run through the gears might not even catapult you above the speed limit.

Not only is it huge fun, the Miata is practical, too. The packaging is fantastic, particularly the perfectly simple fling-back manual roof and the surprisingly large, deep trunk (thanks in part to the car’s standard tire-puncture-repair kit and optional run-flat tires). This Grand Touring edition is a hair on the pricey side, but the fun-for-dollar quotient is still phenomenal. And the hot, hot heated seats that come with this trim level are wonderful (and arguably crucial) in such a car, extending top-down weather deep into autumn.

As the owner of a vintage MGB coupe, I love classic British two-seaters and all they bring with them (the pure joy of driving, the smells, the sounds, the character, and even the reliability challenges). But the Miata, as it's been said countless times before, is truly the best British roadster ever built. Like my colleagues, I mourn the loss of the Honda S2000, but my universe remains balanced thanks to the Mazda MX-5 Miata. Long live the king!

Rusty Blackwell, Copy Editor

New Car Research

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