Banana Smoothy - 15th May, 2018

Mazda’s MX-5 has long been the benchmark in small, fun, reliable ragtop sports cars but there is more than one way to skin a banana and this little mid-engine Toyota MR-S has a different, but no less effective, take on things. It’s available to buy right now. 

Toyota first launched the original MR2 in the 80s and it was a really good car, but not a soft top. The second generation, also a good car, was hard top or targa top as well. The third generation was a true convertible and is like a mini Porsche Boxter. In Japan it was badged MR-S so that’s how we refer to it in NZ as most started life there. The rest of the world knows it as the MR2 or MR2 Spyder.

Where the MX-5 has the classic ‘engine in the front driving the rear wheels’ layout, the MR-S has its engine mounted just behind the cockpit driving the rear wheels similar to many Ferraris and Lamborghinis. This gives balanced weight distribution and stability. The engine is a 1.8 twin cam and although it has less power than the previous model it’s also much lighter.

The overall effect is a fun and swift sports car that doesn’t cost the earth. Add to this it’s relative rarity compared to an MX-5, its Toyota reliability and the fact the styling has aged well and it’s pretty hard to resist.

This particular car has travelled just 80,000kms and is in very good condition with up to date servicing. It’s a prime future collectible example but right now it’s priced at a very reasonable $7995 which stacks up very well for a car that is known for holding its value. More details here.  

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