“That’s just great.” It took me a few moments to realise the words weren’t coming from the radio, but from a cyclist who’d pulled up next to me at a set of traffic lights.
He was the owner of a soft-top Mazda MX-5 and, having seen me drive past in the MX-5 RF with the roof down, he’d frantically pedalled after me for a closer look. And he loved what he saw, saying he preferred the styling to his soft-top.
That encounter, and several similar ones in various car parks, came to mind when I read Simon Astley’s letter (Your Views, 21 June) in which, among other things, he called the RF “unattractive”.
It just shows that styling is personal opinion, which is something everyone is entitled to. And although it may seem superficial, looks do matter with this sort of car. So I decided to so some (entirely unscientific) research: a Twitter poll, asking people whether they preferred the style of the MX-5 soft-top or RF.
Result? A 50/50 tie. An unsatisfying finding, sure, but perhaps one that suggests the RF can, as Mazda hopes, carve out its own appeal.
Mind you, our RF isn’t looking quite so good after a careless driver reversed into it recently, leaving a dent in the bonnet. More on that next time.
MAZDA MX-5 RF 1.5 SPORT NAV
Price £24,895 Price as tested £25,965 Economy 44.5mpg Faults None Expenses None
Like many an amateur runner, I can usually be found taking part in races at weekends.
There are plenty of lovely places to run near my Richmond-upon-Thames home: for example, it’s only a short jog from my house to the start of Kingston Parkrun, which follows a beautiful, flat route alongside the River Thames.
Recently, though, I’ve found myself heading further afield for my running fix, into the undulating Hampshire countryside and beyond. That’s meant running up a lot more steep hills, including some fiendishly tough runs on woodland trails. Ouch.