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The hard-top Mazda MX-5 RF costs an extra £2,000

Buttress-tastic MX-5 kicks off production with £29k Launch Edition range-topper. This, or a GT86?

You there. Yes, you. Fancy spending some more money on a Mazda MX-5? Then allow TopGear.com to direct you towards the MX-5 Retractable Fastback, or ‘RF’ for short. UK spec and prices have been announced today, and some fumbled jabbing of TG’s calculator reveals you’re paying £2,000 extra for those swoopy new buttresses and an electronic folding hard-top.

So, RF prices start at £22,195. That’s for the basic RF: the 1.5-litre SE-L Nav model, mustering a lowly 128bhp, and offering such goodies as LED headlights, climate control, digital radio and, er, nav. The cheapest 2.0-litre version of the RF, pumping power to a dizzying 158bhp, sets you back £23,095.

Okay, we hear you: this isn’t costing enough. In which case, march down to your local Mazda emporium and demand – nay – beg - for an MX-5 RF Launch Edition. 

Limited to 500 cars, this celebratory special gets the 2.0-litre car’s mechanical package, but wears a unique combination of black roof, mirrors and rear spoiler, plus racier BBS wheels. Alcantara trim, Recaro seats and the safety pack option are all thrown in too. It is, effectively, a fully-kitted out MX-5.

Oh right, the price. For one of the 500 Launch Edition RFs, you’ll need £28,995, pitching the RF above the likes of the Toyota GT86 and close to Abarth 124 Spider territory. Both of which offer a dollop more than 158bhp for your outlay…

Bear in mind too, that in return for the intricate roof, swoopier styling and presumably superior refinement, the hard-top MX-5 weighs in around 40kg heavier than the soft-top, so it won’t be the quickest way to deploy between £22k and £98k. But, the RF does add another string of usability to the bow of TG’s favourite small sports car. Would you spend the extra?

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