Live Thread: 2024 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club review

Colin
By Colin Wood
Jun 21, 2024 | Mazda, Miata, New Car Review, Live Thread, Mazda MX-5 Club

Photography by J.G. Pasterjak

The ND-chassis Mazda MX-5 hit the scene back in 2016. In those 8 years since, the car has received several updates including a revised engine, an asymmetric limited-slip differential and DSC-Track–a track-focused mode for the car’s stability control.

[ICYMI: 2024 ND Miata Club gets new limited-slip and driving mode]

How much have all those updates improved the ND? Is the latest Miata truly the best Miata to date? This week, we have a 2024 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club to drive and review–so we’ll let you know.

In addition to the asymmetric limited-slip differential and DSC-Track mentioned earlier, the Club model gets Bilstein dampers and a front shock tower brace not available on the Sport model.

While these features are also included in Grand Touring models equipped with the manual gearbox, only the Club gets access to the optional Brembo front brakes and 17-inch BBS wheels. (The optional package also includes heated Recaro seats plus side sill extensions  and rear bumper skirt finished in Brilliant Black.)

Power output remains unchanged, with the 2.0-liter SKYACTIV-G engine good for 181 horsepower and 151 lb.-ft. of torque, and a six-speed manual is still standard.

Although we feel the MX-5 is more about "smiles per gallon" than miles per gallon, the 2024 ND Miata is rated at 26 mpg city and 34 mpg highway.

MSRP for the MX-5 Club starts at $32,385, though if you want the Brembo brakes and BBS wheels, you’ll want to add $4500 to that total.

Questions? Comments? Feel free to drop them in the comments below.

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Comments
Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/21/24 12:32 p.m.

Please, PLEASE take this to the FIRM and let us know how the new steering and diff work. Don't just take it shopping. This is a GRM core audience vehicle and not a random SUV. Maybe Andy should visit Florida.

In those 8 years since, the car has received several updates including a revised engine, an asymmetric limited-slip differential and DSC-Track–a track-focused mode for the car’s stability control.

Note that the new engine showed up in 2019, the other updates are new for 2024. There was also the kinematic posture control tweak a couple of years ago, does it remain active in DSC-Track?

Colin Wood
Colin Wood Associate Editor
6/21/24 12:37 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

There was also the kinematic posture control tweak a couple of years ago, does it remain active in DSC-Track?

Good question. Let me see what I can find.

EDIT: All the documentation I've read so far would lead me to believe that KPC is sort of on all the time, so it may remain active in DSC-Track. Let me try and get a confirmation from Mazda.

CrashDummy
CrashDummy Reader
6/21/24 12:52 p.m.

Interesting that they went with a fancy mechanical trick to make the diff "asymmetrical" instead of going with an electronically controlled LSD. 

Do both the legacy ND2 and this update have "OFF" as an option for the TC? 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/21/24 12:55 p.m.
Colin Wood said:
Keith Tanner said:

There was also the kinematic posture control tweak a couple of years ago, does it remain active in DSC-Track?

Good question. Let me see what I can find.

EDIT: All the documentation I've read so far would lead me to believe that KPC is sort of on all the time, so it may remain active in DSC-Track. Let me try and get a confirmation from Mazda.

AFAIK it is disabled when DSC is turned off, that's what I recall Coleman telling me about it. CrashDummy, DSC can be turned completely off on the ND1 and ND2 for sure.

From the 2024 Miata service highlights:

Kinetic Posture Control (KPC) is not performed when the following condition is met.

― DSC OFF indicator light is turned on by pressing DSC OFF switch (See DSC OFF SWITCH, DSC OFF INDICATOR LIGHT.)

That would seem to say that KPC stays on in DSC-Track, but I'll keep digging. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/21/24 1:09 p.m.

Heh heh. More skidding!

 Do not use DSC-TRACK on public roads. 

• The DSC-TRACK is a mode which reduces the frequency of DSC activation during sports driving such as on circuits and allows more skidding than when DSC is normally activated. 

• The DSC-TRACK performs brake control of each wheel during turning. 

• The DSC-TRACK is activated by pressing the DSC-TRACK switch for approx. 1 s and the brakes on each wheel are controlled to suppress the oversteer.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
6/21/24 1:47 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

Kinetic Posture Control (KPC) is not performed when the following condition is met.

― DSC OFF indicator light is turned on by pressing DSC OFF switch (See DSC OFF SWITCH, DSC OFF INDICATOR LIGHT.)

Getting big "Donny Don't" vibes from this description.

KPC sounds a lot like a fancy descriptor for a fairly typical e-diff, just applied to a mechanical lsd.

We've got track time scheduled tomorrow at the FIRM, so hopefully the weather cooperates. As with all of these cars I usually start out with all the aids off (frequently after a lengthy and frustrating search on my phone for how to actually do it while sitting in the car waiting to go out), then after we have good data in the bag I'll experiment with modes if there seems to be a mode that could be track friendly. I've yet to find any that are faster than "all off" in any car that could be considered reasonably attainable, but some of them are interesting, like VWs various modes on the Golf R or the GR Corolla's torque split choices. 

Really looking forward to driving this thing with those brakes and that diff, though. I think it'll be a nice combo.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/21/24 2:37 p.m.

KPC is actually a lot more clever than that. It's using the anti-squat geometry in the suspension to keep the car flatter in corners, not using the brakes as hard as torque vectoring or LSD emulation. A guy I knew did an in-depth video on it.

 

I am of the belief that you can get better wheels and brakes than the Brembo/BBS package from the aftermarket for less money, but that's just like, my opinion man. Can't wait to hear what happens at the track.

RoadsterFun
RoadsterFun New Reader
6/21/24 4:47 p.m.

Will you guys do a back to back test with a stock ND2? With the new LSD and "better feels" steering, do these equate faster lap times? Particularly in autocross street class.  
 

I have an ND2 but just wondering if ND3 changes are worth the upgrade.... and hassles of swapping mods over. Ugh. 

Coniglio Rampante
Coniglio Rampante Reader
6/21/24 4:47 p.m.

Does anyone have a link to an article or video that directly tests a Club with the Brembo/BBS wheel package against a Club with the standard brake/wheel package?

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/21/24 4:51 p.m.

In reply to Coniglio Rampante :

The only time you'd notice a difference would be in repeated hard stops (such as track use) and with a driver that can notice a 1.85 lb decrease in wheel weight. The Brembos should have better heat management than the standard brakes, but they are a bulky thing that can affect wheel fitment if you want something different. Rotor diameter is the same.

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