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2015 Mazda MX-5

With a history that began in 1989, the Mazda MX-5 is one of the best sold convertibles on the market. In its 21 years of history, the MX-5 saw three different generations, numerous design updates, and even more engine changes. However, the most impressive update has been announced for the fourth generation that is set to be launched in 2012.

The Mazda MX-5 will remain a rear-wheel drive compact sports coupe with exterior design inspired by the Shinari Concept unveiled earlier this year. With the new generation, Mazda will focus on reducing the total weight to less than 1,000 kilos.

At the launch of the Shinari concept, Ikuo Maeda, general manager of Mazda Motor Corp.’s design division said: "this design will lead to the next generation of Mazda design and will lead to other elements." Guess the MX-5 will be among the first to adopt Mazda’s new "Kodo - Soul of Motion" design language.

UPDATE 05/03/2013: Rumors have emerged that an unexpected engine will join the MX-5 lineup. See more after the jump.

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

Exterior and Interior

Mazda MX-5

The body of the next generation MX-5 will be made in steel, but it will feature high-strength panels, and some ingenious structural solutions, such as a twin-backbone frame, to solve the problem of open-top rigidity.

One of the most unmistakable characteristics attributed to the previous generation of the MX-5 Miata is the large grille that it look like it was on a perpetual caffeine fix. The fourth generation MX-5 did away with that in favor of a more basic grille that’s similar to what we saw on the original Miata.

The headlights of the MX-5 was also given a make-over where it now carries a distinct up-slanting teardrop shape with LED lighting technology. Upon closer inspection, you’ll notice that the new lighting configuration is also pretty similar to the original’s set-up. Meanwhile, the interior will get sports seats and different aluminum insertions.

An unnamed source reports that the MX-5 will hit showrooms in 2015 with a lighter body and chassis, and a sportier look than the current model. The estimated weight the source gave was 1,000 kg (2,204 lbs), which is 276 lbs less than the 2012 model. In a car as small as the Miata, that is significant weight loss, to say the least.

There is also talk that Mazda will offer its roadster up with many more options that will help give the car more of a personality. This will help form a stronger bond between the person and the car. Typically, Miata owners already have this bond with their car, but a little extra something can’t hurt.

Lastly, there will be a top-end model, similar to the Mazdaspeed version in 2004 and 2005, that will be even lighter yet and more tuned for racing, as it will be stripped of unnecessary add-on features to save every ounce.

There was one bit of info on the project altogether and it is that Mazda will only provide the platform (chassis, uni-body, and drivetrain); Alfa Romeo will add on its own body and interior. So scratch the evil idea that we’ll have two almost identical cars.

The Engine

Mazda MX-5

Under the hood of the future Mazda MX-5, it was originally thought that there would be a newly developed 1.5-liter Skyactiv-G four-cylinder engine that would produce around 125 horsepower, mated to a six-speed manual transmission. As for the US-spec model of the Miata, Mazda will offer a 2.0-liter engine that produces north of 145 horsepower that’s also mated to a six-speed manual transmission with an option to change it to a dual-clutch semi-automatic transmission.

The new engine will reportedly feature variable cam phasing, lighter, low-friction reciprocating parts, and possibly a new exhaust manifold design, all of them as part of Mazda’s SkyActiv engineering campaign.

As of August 2012, an unnamed source has stated that Mazda has chosen an engine already and it is a 1.3-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder. It pumps out a healthy 200 horsepower, which is 22 horsepower more than the 2004 and 2005 Mazdaspeed MX-5 produced and 33 horsepower more than the current model . We’re also certain that we’ll see torque cresting the 200 pound-feet mark, though there was no mention of that.

In May 2013, rumors emerged that the MX-5 lineup will carry a diesel option in the form of a 1.6-liter SkyActiv-D engine with around 130 horsepower. The rumors are unconfirmed, but the source also claims that since a diesel roadster is a tough sell to traditional Miata buyers, gasoline options will still be available.

Chassis

Mazda MX-5

When Can I Buy One?

The fourth generation Mazda MX-5 is expected to be launched in 2013 with sales beginning in early 2014. Pricing for the car has yet to be announced but as is the case with most of the MX-5’s line-up of models, you can safely assume that it’ll come at a base price of £17,990, which is a little under $30,000 based on current exchange rates.

The Competition

Mazda MX-5

The new Mazda MX-5 will have to face models like the Mini Cooper S Convertible and the Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder . However, Kia has also recently announced that the company plans a small sports car due out in early 2013 that will take on models like the MX-5.

Some good news for Mazda is that Mitsubishi plans to drop the Eclipse model, so that will be one less vehicle nipping at the Mazda;s heels. The real competition sits with the Cooper S which is getting better with every year. For 2011, it will be offered with a new 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine and a new 2.0-liter. The model is offered with high-quality materials and an extremely harmonious color scheme.

LOVE IT
  • Fourth generation of the iconic MX-5
  • New grille is much better than the smiley version
  • There’s a reason why its so popular
LEAVE IT
  • Still not as powerful as we’d hope
  • Not the cheapest option on the market



71 comments:

Well Mazda really never disappoint me, their cars are really so cute and irressistable! Like this one, I bet everyone will get so excited on it.

Come on Mazda make this Matte Black edition available, and I will buy it...Do something different for Pete’s Sake to the MX-5...I want one but am not inspired...Give me a Matte Black!!

The reason why it is so popular is because on its lovely and attractive appearance, and Mazda automakers are notorious on that. The only unlovely fact about their cars is their weak engine specification.

As what I’ve really expected with a Mazda vehicle, but it still not as powerful as I’d truly hope. Well, Mazda automakers should need to give an extra focused on how they could boost more the engine of their cars.

It looks so cute on its platform and looks so great and fabulous on its body paint. I bet everyone will get so excited on the market production of this Mazda MX-5 because I feel the same way! smiley

Mx-5 is really a good looking convertible car, and I must say that this is the cutest convertible car that I saw and it is already looking great on its color, but I wonder what will be the interior of this one will look like.

Mazda cars are really cool! Their cars are really so great. I would love to see in person if the engine performance of this new Mazda are impressive either! Furthermore, I’m impressed with the sleek body paint of it.

Mazda cars are really cool! I’m impressed with every car they were releasing. I can’t wait to see in person if the engine performance of this new Mazda are great too! Anyway, I’m impressed with the choosing of color it suits with the car.

I like all the Mazda MX-5 unit, it always have the most convertible cars equipped with nice color scheme and well designed unique exterior and interior. Same with MX-5 Sport Black Limited Edition, this one became more stylish with cool headlights.

Very fashionable color. It reminds me of McQueen of cars in this design, except this is a Convertible one.

Mazda cars are really cool and stunning! I’m impressed with every car they were releasing. I can’t wait to see this one in person.

It reminds me of Aston Martini in this Mazda’s convertible. Mazda nowadays are on the run on the industry with their futuristic and affordable cars.

Well Mazda really never disappoint me, their cars are really so cute and irresistible! Like this one, I bet everyone will get so excited on it.

The styling looks so cute and impressive and it is almost perfect for me except the engine features that it has. I don’t think that this is powerful.

I like all the simple car likes this. But not all the car is in the good performance. I think one of the best car and fastest car is Lamborghini.

haha.Its kind of weird but I have remembered Lightning Mcqueen on this car. However, the styling of the car is simply awesome though I don’t think that they have made an incredible upgrade in the speed performance of the car.

The roadster version really adds to the weight of the vehicle and I guess that’s the reason why it doesn’t have an impressive figure performance.

hmm. I wonder if the MX-5 can beat its competitor? The figure performance of this car is not that impressive though I like the aggressiveness of its styling.

Well, I really don’t think that the car has an impressive speed performance. I think the hard top had makes the car heavier and affects its speed. I wonder on how is the sale of this rendered version.

I agree that this vehicle has an impressive performance. Fewer cylinder produced a better mileage. I have to admit that the styling was decent and aggressive.

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