Tuesday, 10 November 2009
Open-Top Ponder: 2001 Porsche Boxster or new Mazda MX5?
Click on all images to enlarge
This is one of those shootout that was hatched out-of-the-blue following a friendly request from the guy you see above. He has been a true roadster fan - who has contemplated a Rover MGF at one point - and probably still is but is caught in a dilemma between a four dour sedan practicality (e.g. Mercedes-Benz W204 C-Class) and a strictly 2-seater drop-top.
Since both of these cars are price circa RM200k, they make a nice comparo: albeit one is almost a decade old and the other one being brand new!
The Mazda is no pushover despite its diminutive 2.0L powerplant. In fact, I was truly impressed with its 50:50 weight distribution affording it superb chassis balance. Its steering is nicely quick and accurate too, having a longitudinal front engine paired with rear wheel drive. driving the iconic Mazda Miata is a revelation reminiscent much of a BMW in character. Well maybe this is where a Japanese car (thus far) gets closest to BMW in driving dynamics. the suspension and chassis strength are superb, coping up brilliantly even if you couldn't brake in time for a speed hump. No issues of bottoming out or rippling motion over bad surfaces.
I would not comment much on the Boxster 2.7 except for its superb squatting stability you get around corners and the inimitable Boxer-6 burble and howl. Anything more than that, I'd be accused of boasting about my own ride.
After doing this 'shootout', it made me wondered why I didn't go for a new MX5 instead. The 22-second 'transformer' roof's definitely more secure and provides better insulation all around since it is after all a metal hardtop. Hmmm...Then again, my red little Boxster has recently transformed into a Cayman (or a Coxster as Jeremy Clarkson calls it!) of late :)