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Cars Mazda ponders MX-5's future

02:20  29 november  2019
02:20  29 november  2019 Source:   autocar.co.uk

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The 2019 Mazda MX - 5 Miata: the evolution of the roadster that started it all. More power at your command – the Future Vehicles. MAZDA 6 Signature skyactiv®-d. You may not see it but you’ll feel it, as SKYACTIV® TECHNOLOGY contributes to the MX - 5 ’ s lightness around every corner.

The Mazda MX - 5 is a lightweight two-passenger roadster manufactured and marketed by Mazda with a front mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout.

a red car going down the road: Mazda ponders MX-5's future © Autocar Mazda ponders MX-5's future

Mazda bosses are deliberating on the next generation of its existing sports car, the MX-5, by considering how to improve the popular model while potentially using an electrified powertrain.

Given its relatively low volume, the MX-5 might be one of the few cars that could avoid being electrified for its fifth generation but, either way, maintaining its light weight is crucial.

R&D boss Ichiro Hirose said: “The lightweighting and compact size are essential elements of MX-5, so even if we apply electrification, we have to make sure it really helps to achieve the lightweighting of the vehicle.”

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While the NC MX - 5 had a fully retractable top, the ND offers a much more complicated mechanism that stores the center panel vertically behind the seats. By adopting this solution and adding two buttresses, Mazda managed to visually differentiate the Roadster from the RF even with the roof opened, and the

Car SOS' s Fuzz Townshend gives us a rundown of his top 5 future classics. Here he is with number 1, the Mazda MX 5 . facebook.com/insideclassics

Brand and design chief Ikuo Maeda flagged changing public opinions as a consideration on which powertrain to use. “The preference of people who enjoy driving sports cars might be changing, so we need to think about what direction society is going,” he said. “We want to look at the best powertrain to keep the vehicle lightweight, but because of the diversifying requirements and preference, we need to explore various options.

“I don’t have the answer now but we need to make a vehicle that people can own without worrying that they are not being eco-friendly.”

The current MX-5 continues to enjoy healthy sales, with 4000 units sold in the UK this year. Mazda UK MD Jeremy Thomson describes the model “as an evergreen car that keeps one aspect of the brand alive”, also saying it has “an incredibly passionate following”.

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The Mazda MX - 5 (NB) is the second generation of the Mazda MX - 5 manufactured from 1998 to 2005. The model continued the MX - 5 ' s philosophy of being a lightweight, front mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive roadster while featuring numerous performance improvements

The MX - 5 ’ s signature heated‡ seats, available in cloth or leather-trimmed†† upholstery, conform to your every curve for reduced †Estimated fuel economy on the Mazda MX - 5 with automatic transmission. Estimated fuel economy based on Government of Canada’s approved, revised 5-cycle testing method.

He added: “It wasn’t so long ago that MX-5 was as well known as Mazda overall. We’ve tried to infuse that MX-5-ness into all our cars.”

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Mazda is marking 30 years of the MX-5 roadster with a special limited edition. Those buyers haven’t gone in blind. The MX-5 30th Anniversary is based on the range-topping 184hp Sport. This was updated last year, with a little more power, and an engine that revs even harder – all the way around the dial to 7,500rpm. It made a superb car even better.

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