06 October, 2014
What is it about the Mazda MX-5 that has enchanted sports car fans for over a quarter of a century?
Is it the fun element or unique style of the speedy little roadster? Perhaps its light-footed, assured handling won our hearts. Or maybe it's the value for money provided by what is arguably one of the best small, affordable sports car ever made.
We tried to ask the members of the MX-5 Owners Club at its 20th Anniversary Rally in Warwickshire on Sunday, but frankly, we were rushed off our feet telling enthusiasts about our classic car insurance!
Footman James enjoys a unique relationship with MX-5 Owners Club members, providing specialist advice, services and insurance in a competitive market.
Out in full force
Unsurprisingly for such a landmark event, enthusiasts were out in full force at the British Heritage Motor Centre for Europe's largest MX-5 get together.
They were greeted by a spectacular line-up of colour coded MX-5s outside the museum's entrance; before mingling with traders, exhibitors and the many owners of the classic models.
At least 1,500 MX-5s were on show during the day; which also included driving and skill challenges and a team display from recovery and rehabilitation charity, Mission Motorsport - who proved that a missing limb is no obstacle to completing daredevil stunts like sideways driving and J turns.
There was an eclectic mix of modern MX-5s and original versions ranging from standard cars to heavily modified models running tuned engines and air bag suspension.
And enthusiasts had the rare opportunity to see, in the same place, half a dozen of the 24 limited edition MX-5 Miatas built to mark the 20-year anniversary of the Japanese team winning the 1991 24Hour Le Mans.
What’s more, Chris Barrie, better known to many as Arnold Rimmer from sci-fi sitcom Red Dwarf, was a popular celebrity guest among the legions of fans.
And team Segstreme were on hand for those who fancied tackling a Segway course set up especially for the event.
Still wanting more
Fantastically, the public's appetite for the MX-5 shows no sign of letting up, with the latest model being unveiled this week at the Paris Motor Show.
Mazda's taking a revolutionary approach with the fourth generation model, opting for a smaller, lighter version which adopts many of its efficient SkyActiv technologies.
The manufacturer is keeping tight-lipped about the details but says its hard work has led to savings of around 100kgs.
The car will be powered by a 1.5-litre petrol engine and cost somewhere in the region of £20,000.