2023 Mazda Miata vs 2023 Subaru BRZ

July 18th, 2023 by

The 2023 versions of the Mazda MX-5 Miata and the Subaru BRZ are impressive examples of coupe engineering. Let’s take a detailed look at each vehicle below to find out which one comes out on top.

Core Features and Trim Levels

Here we’ll cover the engine and core-related components available on each vehicle, then detail the available trim levels:

The 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata

A single-engine is available to power this grand coupe: a 2.0-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder version capable of providing 181 horsepower and 151 lb-ft of torque. That engine gives this Miata impressive speed, granted in part by the fact that this vehicle weighs only around 2,000 pounds, which is perfect for the curvy roads around Orange County. 

The 2023 MX-5 Miata is available in three trim levels: the Sport, Club, and Grand Touring. The Grand Touring trim level is available with a six-speed automatic or manual transmission, while the other two trim levels are automatic only. All versions of this speedy coupe are of the rear-wheel-drive configuration.

The 2023 Subaru BRZ

This coupe is powered by a less fuel-efficient 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine granting 228 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. The greater weight of the BRZ means these horsepower and torque numbers don’t convert as efficiently into speed, translating into a zero-to-60 rating of 0.6 seconds slower than the Miata’s six seconds. This BRZ is rear-wheel-drive only and comes with the driver’s choice of a six-speed automatic or manual transmission. It’s available in the Premium and Limited trim levels.

Interior and Entertainment Features and Options

Here we’ll cover each coupe’s fun, comfortable, and convenient interior features and options:

The 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata

This Miata comes with a multi-function, full-color, 7-inch Mazda Connect infotainment system with voice command, HD radio, Pandora, Aha, Stitcher, and SMS texting. Automatic emergency notification is also standard with this infotainment system. A six-speaker sound system is standard, but a premium nine-speaker Bose sound system with headrest speakers and a subwoofer is also available. SiriusXM satellite radio is another option.

Standard interior features in the 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata include a locking interior storage compartment, chrome and metal-look interior trim, cruise control with steering wheel controls, fade-to-off interior lighting, a styled leather and metal-look steering wheel, cloth upholstery, auto-locking doors, bucket seats, manual air conditioning, and a day-night rearview mirror. Choose to upgrade your interior with options such as an auto-dimming rearview mirror, leatherette and chrome interior trim, leather upholstery with gray stitching, automatic air conditioning, and heated bucket seats with three temperature settings.

The 2023 Subaru BRZ

The 2023 BRZ has an optional STARLINK 8-inch infotainment system featuring HD radio, voice-activated controls, Bluetooth programming, near-field communication capability, iPod control capacity, and smartphone integration. SiriusXM Travel Link is available, as is an eight-speaker upgrade to the standard six-speaker sound system. An automatic equalizer is also standard.

Standard interior features in this BRZ include a carpeted trunk lid, an easy-rear-entry driver’s seat, a day-night rearview mirror, metal-look interior trim, a valet function, a 12-volt DC power outlet, aluminum and leather gear shifter, dual-zone automatic air conditioning, and concealed storage in the cargo area. Its interior options include remote keyless entry, a voice-activated GPS navigation feature, Ultrasuede upholstery, and the STARLINK safety and security tracker system.

Interior Design and Ergonomics

Here we’ll cover the general layout of each coupe’s passenger cabin, paying particular attention to user-friendliness and operational ergonomic quality:

The 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata

The interior design of the 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata is geared heavily toward ease of use and driver-centered ergonomics. Every component related to operational importance or infotainment access is shifted towards the driver to some degree, with the emergency brake set to the passenger’s side of the center console. The seating is exceptionally comfortable in its leather format, and the infotainment system is set high up into the main console for easy access.

The 2023 Subaru BRZ

The BRZ has more of a classic even-split design, featuring an infotainment system set into the main console’s center, low-set dials and buttons, and a gear shifter set far forward into the central console. Stripes of red material split the upholstery in the BRZ, and the air ducts are set higher into the main console than any other component, likely to promote the HVAC unit’s air circulation quality.

Exterior Features, Options, and Design

These coupes are sleek, powerful machines with many impressive exterior features and options. Let’s take a look at how they stack up:

The 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata

The standard exterior features of the new 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata include perimeter approach lighting, variable intermittent windshield wipers, 16-inch metallic black aluminum alloy wheels, a rear window defroster, body-colored bumpers, and lightly tinted glass. Optional features include heated side-view mirrors, rain-detecting windshield wipers, high-performance summer tires, automatic high-beam headlights, and a 17-inch version of the wheels.

The exterior styling of the 2023 Miata is particularly bold and eye-catching, featuring prominent and sweeping body lines on the hood and sides, a smooth-looking tear-drop headlight setup, and a compact black grille. The Soul Red Crystal Metallic paint color looks spectacular on this stylish coupe. Alternatively, the Snowflake White Pearl paint option is a strong choice for those who favor a less bold and more relaxed colorway.

The 2023 Subaru BRZ

The standard exterior features of the 2023 BRZ include fog lamps, a tire mobility kit, lightly tinted glass, 17-inch high-luster gray finish alloy wheels, a lip spoiler, LED brake lights, and summer performance tires. Exterior options include manually folding heated side-view mirrors, automatic on-and-off projector-beam headlights, and the larger version of the summer performance tires.

The exterior style of this BRZ is reminiscent of coupes from decades past, featuring moderately deep body lines, a broad and thin black grille, and a pair of plastic-lined air intakes beneath the angular headlights. We find the Blue Pearl and Sapphire Blue Pearl paint colors most appealing, though those with more understated preferences might prefer the Porcelain White Pearl option.

Are You Ready To Find Your New Mazda Miata?

The competition is fierce, but in a comparison between the Mazda MX-5 Miata and the Subaru BRZ, the Mazda clearly comes out on top. You can find it in our expansive inventory here at Capistrano Mazda of San Juan Capistrano, California.

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