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Nuts and Bolts: 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata

Bottom line: This is one of the best-built, best-engineered, most fun-to-drive roadsters available at any price. It is the stuff icons are made of. But, like most roadsters, it is a toy. Consider its purchase accordingly.

Ride, acceleration and handling: It is wonderful, spirited fun in the short run, but not so much on very long drives (500 miles or more) on wind-swept highways crowded with 18-wheelers whose drivers seem to delight in bullying you.

Body style/layout: It is a subcompact, front-engine, rear-wheel-drive two-door roadster available with a soft top or an easily retractable (manually unlock header, push-button open and close) hard top. There are four trim levels — Sport (base), Club, Grand Touring and the 25th Anniversary edition.

Capacities: Seating is for two people. Cargo capacity is 5.3 cubic feet. The fuel tank holds 12.7 gallons of gasoline (premium grade is recommended).

Engine/transmissions: All versions of the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata come standard with a 2-liter, 16-valve in-line four-cylinder gasoline engine with variable valve timing (167 horsepower with the standard five-speed manual transmission, 158 with the optional six-speed auto-manual; 140 pound-feet of torque).

Safety: Standard equipment includes four-wheel disc brakes, ventilated front and solid rear; emergency braking assistance; four-wheel anti-lock braking protection; stability and traction control; side and head air bags; and front fog lights.

Pricing: The 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring with six-speed auto-manual transmission starts at $30,550, with a dealer’s invoice price of $28,875. Price as tested is $33,385, including $2,040 in options (xenon high-intensity-discharge headlamps, Bluetooth hands-free phone system, Sirius XM satellite radio with four-months free subscription, advanced keyless entry, remote anti-theft system, front air dam, rear underskirt) and a $795 factory-to-dealer transportation charge. Dealer’s price as tested is $31,384.

— Warren Brown