Mazda has applied a handful of modest tweaks to its sporty MX-5 drop-top, giving the roadster one last refresh before an all-new model arrives in 2014.
The range has also been streamlined, with the soft-top convertible now dropped entirely (up until the start of the year it had only been available on a special-order basis), making the power-retracting hard-top the sole option for 2013.
The price of entry has also risen $80, making the base MX-5 Roadster Coupe manual a $47,280 proposition.
The MX-5's 2.0 litre naturally-aspirated inline four carries over, with the same 118kW power and 188Nm torque figures.
There are no mechanical changes, however revisions to the throttle mapping give the 2013 MX-5 a more linear throttle response - but only for those equipped with the standard six-speed manual.
A six-speed automatic is available at extra cost, and brings with it a pair of steering wheel mounted shift-paddles.
Braking hardware is mostly unchanged too, however a new master cylinder and revised hydraulic system improve brake feel and make the pedal more responsive to driver inputs.
A new brake booster also allows brakes to disengage faster, improving the transition from braking to acceleration.
The double-wishbone front and multi-link rear suspension is unchanged for 2013, however it's arguable that nothing needed changing anyway. We'll elaborate more on that point in our upcoming launch review.
While mechanical changes are all minor, the little roadster's styling gets a more noticeable makeover - the frontal treatment in particular.
With a broader frontal area and more streamlined intakes, the 2013 MX-5's new front bumper gives a marginal reduction in drag.
It's also slightly lighter than the previous model's bumper, with thinner, stronger plastics allowing Mazda's engineers to shave 400 grams from the bumper's overall weight.
Changes to the wiring harness also result in a slight drop in kerb weight, although at 1167kg for the manual it's not a difference that drivers will notice.
17-inch alloys are standard across the range, and now wear an attractive coat of gloss gunmetal paint.
The NC MX-5's feature list looks pretty austere by modern standards.
There's no Bluetooth, no climate control, no reach-adjustable steering, no trip computer and no heated seats. The cabin fittings are also looking a little outdated.
There's a decent-sounding 200W Bose stereo system with built-in 6-CD stacker and 3.5mm aux input, but a USB input is notably absent.
You do however get cruise control and leather upholstery as standard.
Opt for the Roadster Sports and you get a pair of grippy Recaro sports seats and lightweight BBS alloys.
All models are equipped with traction control, stability control, ABS and four airbags as standard.
- MX-5 Roadster Coupe - 6-sp manual - $47,280
- MX-5 Roadster Coupe - 6-sp automatic - $49,405
- MX-5 Roadster Coupe Sports 6-sp manual - $49,885
- MX-5 Roadster Coupe Sports 6-sp automatic - $52,010
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