2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata RF First Drive: The Sexiest Hard Top With The Same Goodness Of The Soft Top

Mar 14, 2017 08:50 AM EDT | Andrew Davis

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The 2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata RF is by far the sexiest hard-top convertible with little regard for the added weight of its retractable fastback. The Miata RF is basically the retractable fastback version of the popular Mazda MX-5 Miata.

Roof. Its innovative retractable roof displays how the Japanese automaker is able to incorporate art with an Origami-like roof. Plus, the vehicle's flying buttresses elongate the car thanks to their shape and form, stretching it out and making it look wider and a bit sleeker.

The Japanese automaker claims that it will only take 13 seconds to raise and lower the retractable roof and you can do it at up to 6 mi/h. Why 6 mi/h? According to their engineers, at that specific speed, your hair starts to blow and any faster, a longer hair could get caught up in the mechanism.

Engine. The 2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata RF has all the drivetrain that was in the soft top. Under the hood, it still shares that 2.0-liter SKYACTIV-G engine, delivering 155 hp 6,000 rpm and 148 lb-ft of torque at 4,600 rpm, mated to a 6-speed manual transmission, according to SlashGear.

Despite the additional weight, around 45 kgs, it is still fun to drive. You can still toss it and it feels light. It seems that the way the Japanese automaker designed the 2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata RF is about having the balance, with adequate power and cat-like reflexes. Don't expect it o be similar to the Hellcat, burning tire on the road. If you want to add more power, you can.

Interior. In terms of the interior, well not much has changed compared with that of the soft top because not much had to change. It still has a beautifully simple cabin.

However, the only drawback is that the interior is a bit very tight. There is not a lot of shoulder room. But the overall boot space hasn't changed that much from the soft top, which the engineers are proud of.

In terms of tech, you get a 4.6-inch color display and all key controls are easily accessible. The only addition would have been the addition of a single button to raise or lower the RF.

 Pricing. According to AutoBlog, the cheapest 2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata RF starts at $31,555 (Club trim) and the Grand Touring trim is from $32,620. These are the only trims available, no entry-level Sport like the soft top.

Overall, Mazda has nailed the essentials and they have indeed produced a beautiful car with a unique roof. So, what do you think of the 2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata RF?

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