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After years in which manufacturer driving events became either a rarity or very targeted and selective in whom they invited, Mazda has now gone back to an earlier time (kinda like the Miata, huh?) and put together the MX-5 Experience Ride & Drive Event which does not require you to RSVP or pick a time slot. You just show up whenever you can within their operating hours (12 Noon – 7 PM on their Friday dates and 9 AM – 4 PM on their Saturday dates) and it's first come first served.

The event itself, as the name suggests, focuses exclusively on the all-new, 4th-gen ND Mazda MX-5 Miata. Both automatic and manual (yay!) versions will be available to drive in three stations: braking, autocross, and a hot lap on a specially designed road course. Minimum driving age is 18 (a refreshing change from the 21-and-over of most of these types of carmaker driving events), but you will be required to take a Breathalyzer test.

Unfortunately, for now, at least, only 5 U.S. locations are lucky enough to host this event. Surprisingly, none of them are in certain key locations such as California and Florida, but Mazda hols out the vague possibility of announcing future ride & drive events (that may or may not be the MX-5 Experience) on the Mazda Facebook page.

Without further ado, here are the dates and locations:

Friday, September 4th & Saturday, September 5th. 2015
Autobahn Country Club
3795 Centerpoint Way
Joilet, IL 60436

Friday, September 11th & Saturday, September 12th
Atlanta Motorsports Park
20 Duck Thurmond Rd
Dawsonville, GA 30534

Friday, September 18th & Saturday, September 19th
Met Life Stadium
1 Metlife Stadium Dr.
East Rutherford, NJ 07073

Friday, September 25th & Saturday, September 26th
Driveway Austin
8400 Delwau Ln
Austin, TX 78725

Friday, October 2nd & Saturday, October 3rd
Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park
20000 S Maricopa Rd
Chandler, AZ 85226

For more information:
Mazda USA Media - News
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