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2014 Mazda MX-5 to Return to its Roots, Get a Small-Displacement Turbocharged Engine

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[2003 Mazda Ibuki Concept pictured above]

During the last two decades, most new models are bigger, safer, better equipped but also heavier than the vehicles they replace. The Mazda MX-5 is a typical example: the first generation launched in 1989 tipped the scales at just 980 kg (2,150 lb), while the current, third-generation model starts from 1,095 kg (2,410 lb).

Sure, it’s roomier and more luxurious, but it’s also more expensive and, although in no way a boring car, not quite as fun to drive as the original. In addition, you need to get the 2.0-liter engine to have the same kind of poke the original enjoyed with a 1.6-liter engine and its successor with a 1.8-liter unit.

Mazda intends to perform a “back to basics” feat with the next iteration of its little roadster that is due in 2014. “We will return to the original. It will be lightweight and the cost will be lightweight too. It will be easy to handle and fun to drive," Mazda's head of research and development, Hirotaka Kanazawa, told British publication What Car?.

The Hiroshima-based carmaker is heavily promoting its new Skyactiv technologies. It’s natural, therefore, to use all the tech in the new MX-5 which, thanks to its low weight that will be around 1,000 kg (2,200 lb), won’t need a big-displacement engine.

In fact, as Kanazawa revealed, the fourth generation will be the first MX-5 to shun normally aspirated engines in favor of a small displacement turbocharged Skyactiv unit rumored to be a 1.3-liter four-cylinder engine.

Sources from within the company have revealed that the “back to basics” philosophy also applies to its handling, which will be more driver focused and less comfort oriented than today’s car.

As far as the styling is concerned, the next MX-5 will adopt Mazda’s new “Kodo” design language introduced in the 2010 Shinari concept and the Tokyo-launched Takeri concept that previews the next Mazda6.


PHOTO GALLERY: 2003 MAZDA IBUKI CONCEPT


7 Comments:

aaronbbrown said... »December 05, 2011

 Cool, I like the center panel that runs from exterior to interior, the headlights are a little too minimalist and bland but the tail lights seem to work.

GoFaster58 said... »December 05, 2011

I think this would really be cute as a fastback.  I like it.

CChelios said... »December 06, 2011

  Back to the basics.  Imagine an early 90's Miata with today's tech.  Sweet! 

I Am the Car Wiki.. said... »December 06, 2011

im sorry im not a fan of this thing at all, for $30,000 your getting a weak engine a slow 0-60 time all for the sake of saying its a lighweight fun to drive sportscar??? So is the elise and it will outrun a base model camry...no excuse as to why a rearwheel drive car this small cant either especially for $30,000. The original miata was running to 60 in what 10 or 11 seconds terrible the miata is no sports car.......and the fact people are calling it cute in this blog support the point I dont have to even make about who likes these things...

xx said... »December 06, 2011

The front reminds me of a poster for CARS, the cartoon movie.

Pureworx said... »December 06, 2011

nowhere does it mention any power figures or a price tag... where are you getting this exclusive info regarding the future models? out of your arse?

Mercy Humppe said... »December 06, 2011

You show how easy it is to be a jerk.

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