How Safe Is the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata?

While the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata has been an enthusiast favorite for over three decades, finding out if it’s a safe car is much harder than you’d think. In fact, neither the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety nor the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration offer official ratings for the model. As a result, if you’re looking to pull the trigger on this little Mazda, how can you know it’s actually safe?

To help you in this buying process, we’ll be looking at the Miata’s Euro NCAP safety rating. The test was conducted on the 2015 model. This roadster hasn’t received any major changes that would warrant re-testing. Additionally, we’ll compare the standard roadster to the RF with its metal folding roof.

Is the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata a safe car?

An image of a Mazda MX-5 Miata outdoors.
Mazda MX-5 Miata | Mazda

For the most part, the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata is a fairly safe car. However, when compared to most modern vehicles, it falls behind in a few key areas. Before diving into the specific rating, it is worth noting that if you’re looking at purchasing this roadster, you’re getting an extremely small vehicle.

We’re talking about a car that is 154 in long, 68 in wide, and 49 in wide. As a result, if you’re a person of average height, the Miata’s roofline might align with the bottom of your torso if you stand next to it. As a result of these dimensions, there isn’t a ton of available room, especially if you happen to crash.

Despite these dimensional shortcomings, the Mazda MX-5 Miata scored a respectable four-star Euro NCAP safety rating back in 2015. This means that there was adequate protection for both the driver and passenger. However, this roadster struggled in the frontal offset deformable barrier category, only scoring an adequate score for its driver. The same goes for the lateral impact rating involving another car and a pole.

Is the RF safer than the roadster?

An image of a Mazda MX-5 Miata outdoors.
Mazda MX-5 Miata | Mazda

Let’s say your crash in a 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata doesn’t even involve another car. If you manage to roll this little roadster, are you better off with the soft top or the RF and its metal folding roof? The short answer is that you likely aren’t better off picking one model over the other.

However, this isn’t to say that the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata won’t protect you in case of a rollover. In fact, behind this little car’s front seats, you’ll find two structural roll-over bars. The goal here is to stop the car from squishing itself if it ends up upside down.

While finding recent crash tests for this roadster can be quite difficult, CarsDirect reports that the Miata has only a seven percent chance of rolling over when involved in a single-car crash. As a result, this shouldn’t be a major concern.

How much does the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata cost?

An image of a Mazda MX-5 Miata outdoors.
Mazda MX-5 Miata | Mazda

Buying a Used Mazda MX-5 Miata: What You Should Know

If you’ve read enough and decided to make the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata your next car, here is how much you should expect to pay. Starting with the soft top models, the base trim is the Sport which should cost you around $26,830. From there you can opt for the Club for $30,290, or the Grand Touring for $31,770. Regardless of which trim level you pick, they all include the same 181-hp naturally aspirated 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.

The RF model has a similar breakdown, albeit for more money. The base RF is the club which starts at $33,045. However, the top Grand Touring model comes in at $34,525.