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2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata - Edmunds Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Posts: 10,059
edited July 2016 in Mazda
2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata - Edmunds Road Test

I'm used to temperature needles staying on the low side of the gauge so as not to freak drivers out. But I've never seen a fully warm reading as low as the one in our 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata.

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Comments

  • banhughbanhugh Posts: 315
    edited July 2016
    Interesting point. The scale is Warmed up, Hot and Engine seized instead of Cold, Warmed up and Hot.

    Perhaps this is a sign of things to come. Like a turbo that may run the engine hotter...
  • vince_nhvince_nh Posts: 9
    It doesn't matter how cold the engine is when it's cold. It does matter how warm/hot it is, and you get a better view of that if there's more space on the gauge for it. Best I can tell, the gauge is accurate (although probably averaging over a certain time to avoid displaying spikes) and doesn't just display cold/normal/hot like most do nowadays.

    Also, this was kind of already covered. http://www.edmunds.com/mazda/mx-5-miata/2016/long-term-road-test/2016-mazda-mx-5-miata-clever-coolant-temp-gauge-but-what-about-oil.html
  • metalmaniametalmania Posts: 167
    edited July 2016
    That is odd, but at least there are temperature settings on it. My '04 Mazda6 has a temp gauge, but it's just a span from cold to hot with no numbers. Once warmed up, the needle sits dead center all the time - doesn't matter if it's 20 degrees out in the winter, or 95 in the summer sitting in gridlock traffic with the AC on, it never moves. The only time it ever read high was when my water pump belt tensioner bearing seized and it genuinely started overheating. For a while I just thought it must have an awesome cooling system, then I realized as long as it's in an acceptable range the computer must just keep it in the middle and it only reads high if there's a problem. At least that's what it seems like. I sometimes wish it had numbers, but to be honest as long as it's centered I don't worry about it. I think if it did have numbers and fluctuated a lot I might worry if something was wrong.
  • kirkhilles1kirkhilles1 Posts: 862
    Its odd, but kinda makes sense. Engineers were probably like "why should the driver care if its below operating temperature". If there's no special steps needed (like accelerating slower when cold) then its useless information. My guess is that they don't want you to care about it unless it crosses over 210 in which maybe (hopefully!) warning lights will flash warning you that something may be wrong or that you might be pushing your car a little too much.
  • miata52miata52 Posts: 114
    Maybe the cars computer is calibrated in degrees C, but the gauge displays degrees F because Americans are too stupid to understand metric. The normal operating temp in C would put the pointer very near the middle of the gauge.
  • vince_nhvince_nh Posts: 9
    miata52 said:

    Maybe the cars computer is calibrated in degrees C, but the gauge displays degrees F because Americans are too stupid to understand metric. The normal operating temp in C would put the pointer very near the middle of the gauge.

    The gauge is formatted in the same way in other markets. It's just the numbers that change.

  • Very odd, to me it looks like it's running cold. I would think it has a bad thermostat if it didn't have numbers. My Acura doesn't have numbers on the gauge but with a scan tool I know that the computer turns the fans on low speed when the temp gets over 205 then shuts them off when temp gets to 190. The midpoint on this gauge of 230 is normal but on the toasty side of normal.

    The days of overheating sitting in traffic or idling a long time seem to be in the past. Don't know if it's improved coolant, aluminum radiators, computer controlled fans or all of the above but no cars have trouble idling in summer temperatures for hours with A/C pumping. I remember my dad lifting the hood to keep the car from overheating if it had to idle for a long time in the summer heat.
  • I would want more room between dead cold and operating temp. Basically that gauge is allocating over 75% of the indicator range to temps that I would consider normal to overheated. No need to re-invent the wheel...just give me a gauge that has 50% cold-to-normal and 50% normal-to-hot. Put normal in the middle, like it's always been.
  • csubowtiecsubowtie Posts: 143
    The Miata is meant to be driven hard, and is the single most raced model on the planet. So under those conditions, it is reasonable to expect higher than normal engine temps, and it makes sense to want to keep an accurate eye on just how much higher than normal it is so the driver can decide if they can keep pushing or needs to cool it down. Anything below normal doesn't really matter, other than to note that it's no longer cold.
  • slyons89slyons89 Posts: 11
    In my experience with my 2008 Mazda 3, 210 was as hot as it would ever get (I had a mounted Scangauge II). So I wasn't surprised to see 210 as the maximum 'normal' range in my 2016 MX-5.

    I also appreciate that they give you a 'cold engine' light. With that, this gauge looks perfect. It gives only the information that is relevant.
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