A new study conducted by the competitive benchmarking and predictive analytics company, We Predict, shows the Mazda MX-5 Miata leading its segment and also the similar sporty coupe segment when it comes to real-world three-year costs of maintenance and repair. What we found even more impressive is that the Miata also beats the EV average by a substantial amount.
We Predict analyzed repair and maintenance costs of 13 million vehicles across 400 models, with results based on 65 million service or repair orders that totaling more than $7.7 billion in parts and $9.5 billion in labor costs. It is important to note that these costs were not just consumer costs, but all costs including manufacturer and dealer-incurred costs. Things like TSBs, repair campaigns, warranty costs, and included maintenance programs all are factored in.
The Miata has a real-world three-year cost of about $275 according to the study. Among the Miata’s closest peers, the three-year average is $376. The similar combined compact sporty car and midsize sports car average is $499. Thus, the Miata is significantly lower in cost over its first three years than any other sporty car.
The overall average for conventionally-powered vehicles across all non-premium brands is $573, and for premium brands it is $1,513. Electric vehicle total service costs average $514. We should note that the current average does not include General Motors’ massive cost outlay to replace every Bolt and Bolt EUV battery pack, a program that has only just gotten traction and will continue well into 2022. The cost of repairing the Bolt's defective battery pack in all the Bolts made is expected to top $2 billion.
What we find of interest is that the Miata proves an internal-combustion-powered vehicle can have a very low cost of repair and maintenance like EVs promise to one day have. At least over the first three years.
One reason the Miata may have such a low cost for repair and maintenance over its first three years (despite requiring regular oil changes) is that Mazda builds relatively few. About 500 to 1000 are sold in a given month in the U.S. in normal market conditions. Nealy all EVs also sell in relatively low numbers. There are only two EV s that have sold in America that have been able to maintain a monthly sales average above 3,000 units. Perhaps the low volume and attention to detail are what help the Miata to have such a low cost?
You can view the full report summary at this link for more information.
Miata image by John Goreham
John Goreham is a long-time New England Motor Press Association member and recovering engineer. John's interest in EVs goes back to 1990 when he designed the thermal control system for an EV battery as part of an academic team. After earning his mechanical engineering degree, John completed a marketing program at Northeastern University and worked with automotive component manufacturers, in the semiconductor industry, and in biotech. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American news outlets and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on TikTok @ToknCars, on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin
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