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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

41 mins ago - World

Israel to approve new construction in West Bank settlements

Bennett (L) and Biden discussed the settlements issue. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty

Israel will approve the construction of 4,400 new homes in the West Bank next week: 3,10o in the Jewish settlements and 1,300 in Palestinian villages.

Why it matters: This will be the first time Israel has approved new settlement building since President Biden assumed office, and it's the first time since 2007 that it approves a significant number of new homes for Palestinians in "Area C" of the West Bank, which is controlled by Israel.

House votes to hold Bannon in contempt of Congress

Steve Bannon. Photo: Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

The House of Representatives voted 229-202 on Thursday to hold former Trump strategist Steve Bannon in contempt of Congress for refusing to comply with a subpoena from the Jan. 6 select committee.

Why it matters: The Justice Department will now consider bringing criminal charges against Bannon, marking a significant escalation in the Jan. 6 committee's efforts to enforce subpoenas against Trump allies who refuse to cooperate.

Biden: Jan. 6 Capitol riot "was about white supremacy"

President Biden speaks during the 10th anniversary celebration of the dedication of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial with Vice President Harris in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 21. Photo: Oliver Contreras/Sipa/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden said Thursday that white supremacy motivated rioters who carried out the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

Driving the news: "The violent, deadly insurrection on the Capitol nine months ago, it was about white supremacy, in my opinion," Biden said at an event commemorating the 10-year anniversary of the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial in Washington.

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