Mazda MX5 Miata

Mazda MX5 Miata

Mazda is going to compete in the Britcar MSA British Endurance Championship 2011 with a lightweight MX-5 GT. The model has been created in cooperation with Tunbridge Wells-based Jota Sport and weights only 1873 lbs.

"The MX-5 production race car’s modest power output, bullet proof reliability and nimble handling demonstrated last year how the MX-5 can be competitive against some of the purpose-built Lotus, VW and BMW BMW race cars. With a higher power output combined with the durability, reliability and handling attributes that the MX-5 is renowned for; the MX-5 GT race car will be strong contender against the more powerful race cars in its class," said Graeme Fudge, PR Director, Mazda UK.

The MX-5 GT will be driven by two Mazda works drivers including experienced Mazda racing driver, Mark Ticehurst and racing driver, Owen Mildenhall.

UPDATE 08/19/11: Mazda has come out with a new video featuring the MX5-GT taking a hot lap around the world famous Spa Francorchamps race track in Belgium. The video is hosted by Mark Ticehurst as he pilots his little sportster around the track. Check it out!

Hit the jump to read more about the Mazda MX-5 GT.

UPDATE 08/21/12: The Mazda Mazda MX-5 GT4 - yeah, that’s what it’s called now - has now been priced by Mazda. Want to find out how much it’s going to cost? Click past the jump to find out.

Back in 1991, Japanese automaker Mazda made history as the first Japanese automaker to win the 1991 24 Hours of Le Mans. On the strength of the Mazda 787B No.55 and driven by the team of Johnny Herbert, Volker Weidler, and Bertrand Gachot, Mazda’s ’91 Le Mans victory served notice to the world that the Japanese are more than capable of being competitive in the world stage.

Twenty years after their remarkable victory, the Japanese automaker is releasing a limited edition MX-5 Miata , which they’ve appropriately billed as the ’55 Le Mans Edition’. Available only in Switzerland, the special edition MX-5 comes in four different exterior color finishes – red, gray, white, and black – with contrasting profile strips that run the length of the sides of the car. On top of that, Mazda also gave the car a new Bilstein sports suspension, a front strut bar, a limited slip differential (LSD), and a set of 10-spoke alloy wheels. Inside, Mazda dressed up the special edition MX-5 with bespoke ‘55 Le Mans’ logos to go with a numbered plaque to designate its production number.

No performance upgrades where given to the MX-5, which means that it comes with the same 2.0-liter engine that produces 160 horsepower mated to a six-speed manual transmission.

While it sucks that the ’55 Le Mans Edition’ MX-5 will only be available in Switzerland, we can still objectively say that even with a minimal dress-up, the Mazda MX-5 Miata still looks pretty damn good.

Shortly after their announcement of the new Mazda MX-5 Kendo which celebrated the 900,000th Miata to come off the production block, Mazda is readying up another special edition for the European market. And just in time for the European spring, this special edition MX-5 is appropriately being called the Spring Edition.

The Mazda MX-5 Spring Edition will be available with a softtop or a retractable hardtop, depending on where you live. It will be powered by a 1.8 liter engine for all countries in Europe, but will come with a special 2.0 liter, hardtop version for the British market.

The new MX-5 Spring Edition will be distinguished by a unique Dolphin Grey exterior color and premium leather interior. Other distinctive features will include chrome door handles, silver fog lamp bezels, chrome surrounds around the front bumper grille, and a new set of 17" alloy wheels. Don’t worry if you don’t fancy yourself a gray person. Mazda is also offering the Spring Edition in Aluminum Mica or Sparkling Black (new for MX-5). The interior also comes with a pretty impressive list of options.

Hit the jump to read more about the Mazda MX-5 Spring Edition.

Mazda is celebrating its 900,000th unit of the MX-5 with the launch of a new special edition, the Mazda MX-5 Kendo. This model is named after "The way of the Sword" – a modern Japanese martial art renowned for its fighting spirit, eye-catching dynamic movement and refinement. This special edition will go on sale in the UK on March 1st, 2011 after it is revealed at the Geneva Motor Show.

The new Mazda MX-5 Kendo special edition will be offered in a coupe or roadster version. The soft top version will be powered by a 1.8L engine producing 126hp and the Roadster coupe version gets a 2.0L engine producing 160hp.

“Special Edition models of Mazda MX-5 have always been eagerly received by UK consumers and I’m sure the two new Kendo models will trigger a strong wave of fresh interest in our long-running star performer,” said Mark Cameron, Sales Director, Mazda UK. “In Britain, the Mazda MX-5 has enjoyed 20 years of incredible popularity, with UK customers accounting for over 10 percent of global sales, while it has received a host of ‘best sportscar’ awards from motoring and consumer media.”

Hit the jump to read more about the Mazda MX-5 Kendo.

How many car models can lay claim to having sold 900,000 units in its lifetime? Not a lot, that much we can tell you.

So when the Mazda MX-5 Miata reached the unfathomable number of 900,000 cars sold, it only seemed right to build a special edition model of the Miata to commemorate this historic milestone. That’s exactly what Mazda did.

Scheduled to debut that the Chicago Auto Show, the Mazda MX-5 Miata Special Edition is the Japanese automaker’s way of giving thanks to the 900,000 – and counting – owners of the MX-5, all of whom are responsible in allowing the Japanese sports car to reach such unprecedented sales heights.

The special edition Miata will only be limited to 750 units, which means that all the models will most likely be swept up faster than you can say “Zoom, Zoom”. But if you just happen to be one of the 750 early birds, you’re going to get a chance to catch a pretty special, limited run worm and on a bigger scale, be a key contributor to Mazda’s drive for 1 million MX-5 Miatas sold.

There are just far too many pro’s in this proposition so we suggest that you keep tabs on when Mazda will begin taking orders for the special edition MX-5 and burn the phonelines to get yourself a piece when it does.

Details after the jump

It takes a certain level of popularity to achieve a Guinness World Record 11 years ago in 2000 and still keep re-writing it a decade after the first record was initially set.

Then again, when you put ‘popular’ and ‘roadster’ in the same sentence, you immediately think of the Mazda MX-5 Miata .

After setting a world record for “best-selling two-seat sports car” in May 2000 when production totaled to 531,890 models, the MX-5 Miata just keeps raising the car by continuing to re-write its own record even after years of setting the original number. Earlier today, the most popular roadster in history broke the 900,000 barrier, becoming the first of its kind to reach that figure. Even more impressive is the fact that the MX-5 first started breaking hearts as early as 1989 and 21 years after it’s debut, the two-door roadster is still as popular as ever.

Continued after the jump.

Source: Mazda

We know summer days are far, far away, but anyone looking for a cool summer kit car should meander on over to the Mev Exocet. This kit car begins with a Mazda MX-5 Miata , tacks on an extra £2000 (around $2,500) in components and labor, and ends with a vehicle that looks like it belongs in the dunes. Mev claims doing the conversion is easy and can be done without professional assistance, but we’d play it on the safe side and ask for help anyway. Of course, if anyone is feeling froggy, then they may want to start the project now so it can be ready by the time the summer heat rolls in.

To begin the conversion, Mev removes the body shell of the Miata, leaving a rolling chassis. A full bracketed chassis and an integrated roll bar is then added, along with a GRP bonnet, rear cover, front & rear bulkheads, side panels, grille mesh, lower rear panel, and wings to complete the oversize go-cart. The Exocet also gets alloy floor panels, an alloy transmission tunnel, and a variety of nuts and bolts to keep the thing together. The design then takes a stickered turn with a vinyl graphics set in yellow, orange, black, white, red, or light green.

Up until now, we’d be convinced that this would be an excellent present to take the kids around the neighborhood, but then Mev suggests using a 1.6L (120bhp), 1.8L (131bhp) or 2.0L (167bhp) engine. Now it just sounds like a great day of fun for the kid in all of us.

Considering the excruciatingly long distance and the myriad of unflattering conditions these three cars were subjected to, it’s a complete miracle that the three drop-top sports cars Top Gear used in their “Christmas Special” made it all the way to their destination in Bethlehem.

Though there were some mishaps and unplanned detours along the 1,200-mile journey from Iraq, Clarkson’s Mazda MX-5 , Hammond’s Fiat Barchetta , and May’s BMW Z3 , lasted long enough to see the three deliver their gifts of gold, frankincense, and apparently, a Nintendo DS.

As a result of successfully completing the journey of the Three Wise Men, the three sports cars are now on display in the World of Top Gear exhibition at Beaulieu, UK.

They’re not in the best of conditions, to say the least. Clarkson’s MX-5 has bullet holes on its doors as a result of an experiment gone bad, Hammond’s Barchetta experienced radiator problems, and May’s Z3…well, it fared the worst of the three with a laundry list of problems. But like true steeds dedicated to bringing their masters to their destination, the three sports cars battled dirt roads, desert dunes, and even an impromptu NASCAR-style race, to find a way to get to their destination.

So to give honor to these noble four-wheeled sheets of metal, the three sports cars have been placed in the World of Top Gear Exhibition to join its fellow brethren of cars that have been used over the years in different challenges by the cast of the show.

It’s a well-placed recognition considering what they’ve been through.

Source: Top Gear

As you may know by now, Top Gear is headed to Bethlehem for Christmas in order to follow the same route as the Three Wise Men using a BMW Z3 , a Fiat Barchetta , and a Mazda MX-5 as their camels. A short preview of the episode was already featured last week, but the full trailer for the special has now been released.

The Christmas special will be aired on December 26th, 2010 and will feature a Top Gear version of the boys’ "own 21st century nativity play," but as a gift for the holiday season Top Gear will also air their regular episode on December 21st. This episode features an "epic road trip up America’s east coast" with the boys driving a Mercedes SLS , a Porsche 911 GT3 RS , and a Ferrari 458 Italia . In this segment, the trio put the sports cars to the test to determine which is the greatest. Other segments of the episode will include Danny Boyle’s track run of the reasonably priced car and "a round up of car-related Christmas tat."

There you have it, two Top Gear episodes in one week. Isn’t Christmas wonderful?

As one of the most esteemed auto magazines in the world, Car and Driver’s annual “Top 10 Cars” is always a good barometer for automakers to see if one – or maybe two – of their vehicles made it to the list. With a readership that spans the entire world, Car and Driver’s Top 10 list is read by millions of people so it’s kind of a big deal for these companies. From the usual suspects to a number of new surprises, the “Top 10 Cars” will reveal what cars the magazine is highly recommending for the next calendar year.

In determining which cars make it to the list, editor-in-chief, Eddie Alterman explains: “In our testing, we are looking for those automobiles that deliver spectacular value, real driver engagement, and the highest fulfillment of their intended mission.”

He continues: “Our testing takes place over a week on real roads in the real world, marshaling more than 60 new test cars and our entire editorial staff. It’s a real workout, and the best cars on the market emerge victorious."

For 2011, the list has a number of old guards that have made multiple appearances while there are others that are making their inaugural face-time. Just to give you an idea on what to expect, three American, German, and Japanese models made it to the list with the other spot going to a model from South Korea. There are also three cars – the Audi S4 , the Mazda3 , and the Ford Fusion Hybrid – that dropped out of the list, which means that you’re going to be seeing a number of new entries making it to the Top 10.

So without further ado, Car and Driver’s “Top 10 Cars for 2011” after the jump.

Source: Car and Driver

Back to top