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The Future Of Mazda MX-5: What We Know So Far

The future of Mazda MX-5 is not as grim as you may think. It will still feature an internal combustion engine and a six-speed manual gearbox

The Mazda MX-5, also known as the Miata, is a car that doesn’t need much introduction. The Japanese take on the British, lightweight roadster, is in its fourth generation, with the current, ND generation being the most lightweight and quickest of all iterations. With that being said, rumors of the ND Miata being discontinued in 2022 have been circulating. However, those are false, since we will be getting another updated version of the current generation.

The Future Of Mazda MX-5: What We Know So Far
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The information comes from Mazda’s news website, according to which an updated Mazda Miata will be unveiled “this winter”, whatever that means. The Australian site WhichCar is more specific, saying that 16 December 2021 is the date the updated Miata will be officially unveiled, according to a spokesperson from Mazda Australia.

While the current-generation MX-5 already had a facelift in 2019, the 2022 model is expected to be the first proper update for the roadster. Kirk Kreifels talks about a more aggressive design, which has come in the form of a rendering, made by the Spyder7 scoop team. We can also expect new exterior and interior colors since Mazda hasn’t stopped giving us those, since the car came out.

The Future Of Mazda MX-5: What We Know So Far
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You may be disappointed to learn that the 2022 update will not bring more power. Currently, the ND2’s 2.0-liter, normally-aspirated Skyactiv G engine makes 181 horsepower at 7,000 RPM and 151 pound-feet (205 Nm) at 4,000 RPM, as opposed to earlier models’ 158 horsepower at 6,000 RPM and 148 pound-feet (200 Nm) at 4,600 RPM.

Engine 2.0-liter, normally-aspirated Skyactiv G
Power 181 HP @ 7,000 RPM
Torque 158 LB-FT @ 6,000 RPM

Like other carmakers, Mazda is also working towards becoming a fully electric car brand with half of its models featuring some sort of hybridization, by 2025. This is also when the next, fifth-generation Mazda MX-5 (NE) is expected to go on sale. Mazda says the focus will be on the new Skyactiv-X powertrain, introduced in 2018. The Skyactiv-X family features mild hybridization and compression-combustion, like on a diesel engine, so that’s something to keep in mind.

The Future Of Mazda MX-5: What We Know So Far
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However, in the next-gen Miata, it will be downsized to a 1.5-liter inline-three and a 1.2-liter inline-three, for certain parts of the world. They also say, the evolution of the 2.0-liter Skyactiv-X engine will be the focus of attention, whatever that means. Maybe a MazdaSpeed version for the next Miata? Other rumors suggest that the Mazda MX-5 would live on through electrification, but it seems we’ll get at least one more generation before that happens.

The next-generation Mazda Miata will not gain weight, despite potentially being a hybrid. Mazda will be using more carbon fiber, which will, no doubt, increase the car’s price. The goal is to reduce weight from 2,182 pounds (990 kg) to 2,028 pounds (920 kg).

The main takeaway here is that Mazda is still going to give us a pure, compact sports car, in the form of the MX-5. While we may see a downsized engine and mild hybridization, the small Japanese sports car will continue to be a fun, lightweight driver’s machine. More importantly, it will still have a six-speed manual transmission, at least until a fully-electric version comes, sometime after 2025.

Dim Angelov
Dim Angelov
Born in 1992, I come from a family of motoring enthusiasts. My passion for cars was awoken at the age of six, when I saw a Lamborghini Diablo SV in a magazine. After high school I earned a master’s degree in marketing and a Master of Arts in Media and Communications. Over the years, I’ve practiced and become skilled in precision driving and to date have test driven more than 250 cars across the globe. Over the years, I’ve picked up basic mechanical knowledge and have even taken part in the restoration of a 1964 Jaguar E-Type and an Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint. Lately, I’ve taken a fancy to automotive photography, and while modern cars are my primary passion, I also have a love for Asian Martial Arts, swimming, war history, craft beer, historical weapons, and car restoration. In time, I plan my own classic car restoration and hope to earn my racing certificate, after which I expect to establish my own racing team.  Read full bio
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