2015 may be over soon, but 2016 is just around the corner and so are next big automotive events of the year, the Detroit Auto Show and the Tokyo Auto Salon. While the former will mark the introduction of several new vehicles for the U.S. market, the latter will showcase an array of exciting concept cars, one of which is the Mazda Roadster RS Racing.

Although the name might suggest I’m talking about a brand-new model, the RS Racing concept is actually based on the fourth-generation MX-5 Miata. Having already spawned the Spyder and Speedster concepts we saw at the 2015 SEMA in November, the Miata will take a slightly different form in Tokyo, where it will share features with Racing concepts based on the CX-3 crossover and the Mazda6 sedan.

Details are absent as of this writing, as Mazda only released a few photos of the show car. But, info should become available as soon as the Tokyo Auto Salon opens its doors, so make sure you stick around for the full rundown. Meanwhile, have a look below to learn what we already know about this roadster.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mazda Roadster RS Racing Concept.


2016 Mazda Roadster RS Racing Concept
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Much like the Spyder and Speedster concepts, the RS Racing concept features an aerodynamic kit consisting of a larger front splitter, reworked side skirts, and a new rear diffuser. The splitter and the side skirts are actually similar to the Spyder’s, while the diffuser has a unique shape and offset, twin exhaust pipes. Other than that and the multi-spoke wheels, the RS Racing concept seems identical to the standard model, but it’s the paint job that makes a difference.

The roadster is finished in an exclusive shade of black that gives it a menacing appearance you won’t get from the factory. Complementing the murdered-out appearance are the red accents on the splitter, side skirts, and rear diffuser, as well as the bright-red brake calipers. The wheels are also larger and wrapped in low-profile tires, while the suspension has been lowered by an inch or so.


2016 Mazda Roadster RS Racing Concept
- image 660457

Inside, the roadster received a pair of Recaro sports seats wrapped in leather and Alcantara and Alcantara inserts for the door panels. The black theme carries over in the cockpit, but the red stitching on the seats, door panels, gear shifter, and handbrake lever add a splash of color. All told, the concept’s interior is far from spectacular, but it has just enough features to make it unique.


There’s no word as to what lurks under the black hood, but given that this concept was likely built to Japanese specs, the 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine offered in Japan and Europe is the obvious option here. It cranks out 129 horsepower and 111 pound-feet of torque in the standard roadster, and if past Miata-based concepts are any indication, output should remain unchanged.

Should Mazda go with the larger, 2.0-liter four-pot offered in North America, the RS Racing concept would benefit from 155 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of twist.

Based on the gear shifter seen in the photos, this concept comes with a six-speed manual transmission.


2016 Mazda Roadster RS Racing Concept
- image 660456

The Roadster RS Racing is by no means the coolest Miata-based concept I’ve seen so far. If I were to pick one, I’d go with the Speedster Concept, because it not only looks unique due to its barchetta-style design, but it’s also lighter than the standard models, which translated into better performance. However, while it may not be that different when compared to the standard car, the RS Racing concept is an interesting take on the fourth-generation MX-5 that showcases just how customizable this tiny roadster is. I like how Mazda managed to turn the Miata into a more aggressive machine with just a coat of paint and a splash of red on its aero bits. The interior is also sportier than usual thanks to the Recaro seats and the large amount of Alcantara, a material that’s quite common in race cars nowadays. If I were Mazda, I’d put this concept car into production as a limited-edition model and send it Stateside with the 2.0-liter engine under the hood.

  • Leave it
    • Likely no drivetrain upgrades
    • Just a concept for now
    • No official details to run by
Ciprian Florea
Senior Editor and Supercar Expert - ciprian@topspeed.com
Ciprian's passion for everything with four wheels (and more) started back when he was just a little boy, and the Lamborghini Countach was still the coolest car poster you could hang on your wall. Ciprian's career as a journalist began long before earning a Bachelor's degree, but it was only after graduating that his love for cars became a profession.  Read More
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