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Mazda Miata is a blast to drive even in winter. Photo: Mazda

It's the middle of January and I'm tooling around Detroit in a two-seat Mazda Miata MX-5 RF convertible. There's something depressing about driving a droptop in the dead of winter. You want nothing more than to fold down the top and feel the breeze in your hair.

So I admit I wasn't enthusiastic about stuffing myself, down parka and all, into the low-slung coupe with the retractable aluminum hardtop — until I pressed the clutch and peeled out onto the icy street.

Tires make the difference. This 2019 Miata is outfitted with Bridgestone Blizzak winter tires and standard traction control, so in light snow I felt as confident as I did zipping around in the ragtop last summer. The ride is slightly harsher, and a bit noisier, but who cares when you're having this much fun?

Mazdas are for people who like driving, so don't expect full autonomy in the future. But the Miata RF is available with the usual assisted-driving technology like blind-spot monitoring, lane-departure warning and low-speed automatic emergency braking.

The Miata is one of my all-time favorite cars — in summer anyway — the kind of midlife crisis car you'd buy if you had an extra $33,000 lying around.

The bottom line: I found myself wishing for a blizzard so I could play around in the snow drifts. Sadly, I had to give it back yesterday, just as a half-foot of snow is predicted.

Read what else I've driven here.

Go deeper

53 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Read: Pete Buttigieg's opening statement ahead of confirmation hearing

Pete Buttigieg, President Biden's nominee to be secretary of transportation, in December. Photo: Kevin Lamarque/AFP via Getty Images

Pete Buttigieg, President Biden's nominee to lead the Transportation Department, will tell senators he plans to prioritize the health and safety of public transportation systems during the pandemic — and look to infrastructure projects to rebuild the economy — according to a copy of his prepared remarks obtained by Axios.

Driving the news: Buttigieg will testify at 10 a.m. ET before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. He is expected to face a relatively smooth confirmation process, though GOP lawmakers may press him on "green" elements of Biden's transportation proposals.

Off the Rails

Episode 8: The siege

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. Axios takes you inside the collapse of a president with a special series.

Episode 8: The siege. An inside account of the deadly insurrection at the Capitol on Jan. 6 that ultimately failed to block the certification of the Electoral College. And, finally, Trump's concession.

On Jan. 6, White House deputy national security adviser Matt Pottinger entered the West Wing in the mid-afternoon, shortly after his colleagues' phones had lit up with an emergency curfew alert from D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser.

Tech companies worry about becoming targets

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Tech employees are on high alert about their own personal safety as their employers roll out policies to ban or limit the reach of far-right extremists angry over former President Donald Trump's defeat.

Why it matters: As tech companies impose aggressive policies after the Capitol riot, employees will be the target of vitriol from aggrieved people who think tech and the media are conspiring to silence Trump and conservatives more broadly.

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