Yes, you heard the headline right. What you’re seeing here is a Mazda MX-5 RF, which is the hardtop version of the MX-5, being taken off-road. While the all-new Ford Bronco is one of the newest off-roaders making headlines nowadays, this story about a Mazda MX-5 RF going off-road with no 4WD, lockable rear differentials, or even a high ground clearance is equally just as impressive.
The owner of this Mazda MX-5 RF you see here is Joel Gat. His Facebook post has now garnered 414 reactions and 306 shares as of this writing. Speaking to The Drive, Gat explained his modifications to the MX-5 RF are light. “[I] removed the side skirts, cut away [the] fender liner, and a little love with a hammer to clearance some metal on the chassis side of the wheel wells. Oh, and Weathertech floor mats.”
The deletion of the fender liner and side skirts is meant to accommodate the larger 27-inch Falken all-terrain tires. While the suspension is completely stock, the bigger tires gave it additional ground clearance.
Just to showcase how tough the terrain is, the Mazda MX-5 RF went through Colorado’s Imogene Pass, which according to Joel Gat, is about 11,000 feet above sea level. The tough off-road trail even had a sign that recommended cars to have high ground clearance, four-wheel drive (4WD), and a short wheelbase. While the MX-5 RF fits the third criteria, it definitely fails the former two. Still, this did not deter one brave Joel Gat to traverse this tough terrain.
What’s next for this Machine Grey Mazda MX-5 RF? One of the commenters on his post that seems to know Joel Gat says that he has plans to add Fox shocks to this little sports car. He’s just waiting for his shipment to arrive. Is Miata always the answer? In the case of off-roading, it seems to be a solid yes for Joel Gat.