Posts Tagged ‘miata’

Japanese Car Auction Find – 1998 Mazda Miata (NB)

Posted by Stephen On Thursday, June 4th, 2015

1998 Mazda Miata

Earlier this week, we looked at a compilation of first-drive reviews for the all-new fourth-generation 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata. Critical opinions ranged from “It’s better in every way,” to, “the car’s only competitor is the death of fun.”

Today, we thought it would be fun to look back at one of the older Miata models from decades past – a 1998 Mazda Miata NB.

This would’ve been the first model year in the second-generation of Mazda’s iconic roadster. We love the fact that the auction find here is in the classic forest green… This is the color most closely associated with the second-generation Miata, production code NB. Although the new Miata is designed as in homage to the original first-generation model, in our opinion its looks are closest to that of these second-gen models… If nothing else because the new Miata lacks the first-gen’s hallmark retractable headlights.

1998 Mazda Miata rear

Mazda made a surprising number of updates for the second-generation Miata, even if the most noticeable is the change in headlights due to safety regulations. For example, the Miata NB featured superior aerodynamics with a drag coefficient of 0.36. This didn’t actually result in much of a performance increase though since the new Miata gained about 150 lbs and kept the same 1.8L turbocharged engine that Mazda added as an option to the Miata in ‘94.

However, that doesn’t mean that the mechanics weren’t without improvements…

For example, this would’ve been the first car to use Mazda’s original Variable Intake Control System. The engine was also slightly tuned up to output 140 horsepower instead of 131. The engine also featured a higher compression ratio, and several of the parts were changed out for superior alternatives. Mazda also fitted the NB Miata with new wheels, better tires and bigger brakes, including the addition of anti-lock brakes.

1998 Mazda Miata interior

Even though it was relatively small, all of these mechanical upgrades DID have a real-world, on-the-road impact for this generation’s performance… The new NB raced from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 7.8 seconds, more than a half-second faster than the NA. It also has a fully unlocked top speed of 130 mph, unlike the first-gen Eunos models in Japan and Europe which were artificially capped at 112 mph.

All in all, this 1998 Mazda Miata roadster is a car brimming with history. If you’d like to learn more about it, you can get a full translation of the auction sheet below:

1998 Mazda Miata auction sheet

“Interior C, first registered January 1998, VS version, FAT, AC, power steering, power windows, ABS, airbag, leather, stone chips in front window, interior grime, power windows not working, canvas top torn, wheels scratches, engine oil leak, worn and dented underneath vehicle, scratches and dents and wrinkles, spare wheel missing, marks as per map”

The 2016 Mazda Miata is Finally Here

Posted by Stephen On Tuesday, June 2nd, 2015

driving matters

Today’s the day. The fourth-generation 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata is finally here. Across the web, a flood of “first drive reviews” have been published within the last 24 hours. And, Mazda’s given us an intriguing promotional video to kick off the roadster’s career…

Lots of automakers claim that their sports car offers drivers a 50/50 weight distribution between the front and back, but few of them actually go to the trouble to prove it. How do you prove a 50/50 weight distribution, you ask? Easy – you put it on a perfectly balanced fulcrum scale to see if it stays level. And that’s exactly what Mazda did:

Wow – not only is the new Miata perfectly balanced, it’s also the lightest-weight version of the car we’ve had since the original 1990 version with a curb weight of just 2,332 lbs.

Okay, so the 2016 Mazda MX-5 is a piece of sheer engineering genius. Got that. The question is, does that mechanical prowess translate into on-road performance? Does the new generation of the most iconic sports car of the past quarter-century live up to the hype?

Short answer, yes.

Here are a few of the “first drive” reviews across the web:

Jalopnik says that “even though it has 12 fewer horsepower than the last [Miata], it’s faster. And more nimble. And more comfortable. And better. Better in every conceivable way. This is easily the best performance car you can buy for less than $30,000.”

High praises, but that’s just the beginning.

2016 Mazda MX-5 manufactured

For their part, Car and Driver were most impressed with the car’s similarity to the 1990 version of the Miata… Not just in size and weight, but in the euphoric driving experience the car offers. Throughout their review, they echo the sentiment of Jalopnik… Everything is better, from the cockpit to the engine to the design to the drive.

Yahoo Autos was the first to identify a ‘con’ in the 2016 Miata. Yep, they rightly pointed out that the car makes “all the sacrifices necessary to make it a pure driver’s machine.” But then again, Yahoo’s biggest pro for the car is that it’s “a pure driver’s machine, at a blue-collar price,” so this ‘con’ is tongue-in-cheek at best. Our favorite part of Yahoo’s review is where they list the Scion FR-S, Subaru BRZ and “the death of fun” as the car’s biggest competitors.

Are you starting to get the picture? According to all major sources, the 2016 Mazda Miata absolutely lives up to the hype… And then some.

Japanese Car Auction Find – 2010 Fiat 500

2010 Fiat 500

Although the Fiat 500 isn’t technically a roadster in the same way that the Miata is, it’s still one of the sports car’s biggest competitors currently on the road.

2010 Fiat 500 rear

It isn’t so much that the cars are in the same segment, but that they attract the same niche of drivers… Drivers who want something fun and emotional to drive, unique to look at, and budget-friendly.

2010 Fiat 500 interior

This is a 2010 model year, which would make it the third model year after the car’s 2007 revival. It’s actually in superb condition for being five years-old with an auction rating of 4.5, a total of four minor blemishes on the exterior, and an A-grade interior to boot. You can get more details from the auction sheet translation below:

2010 Fiat 500 auction sheet

“Interior A, first registered February 2010, 1.4 16V Lounge model, AT, AAC, original AWs, power steering, power windows, leather, airbag, one owner, service book, HDD navigation system with digital TV and DVD playback, reversing camera, AM 16 inch AWs, half-leather seats, electrical opening, chrome mirror covers, 2 x keyless keys, spare key, first time in auction, some service history (5 pages), official dealer RHD import, interior trim has minor scratches, wheels scratched, marks as per map”

The Toyota GT86 Is Getting a Little Brother

Posted by Stephen On Wednesday, May 20th, 2015

2014 Toyota GT86

Last week, we got our first look at the facelifted 2016 Toyota GT86 sports coupe. This weekend, we learned that this isn’t the only piece of GT86/FR-S related news Toyota’s been hiding… Apparently, Toyota is currently developing a compact sports car that would slot below their joint venture coupe.

The news comes from Australian automotive blog Motoring, who apparently first heard the news from “a source close to Toyota”. They say that the new compact sports car will be a two-door rear-wheel-drive coupe that will have a starting price of about $20,000. It will run on a 132 horsepower 1.5L petrol engine and come in under 1,000 kg.

Toyota Sports 800

Motoring also says that the car will compete with the new Mazda MX-5, but let’s be real… Given Toyota and Mazda’s recently expanded partnership, we all know that this is going to be a Miata-based vehicle. In fact, we’d say there’s a decent chance it will be built on the same platform and use a SkyActiv-inspired engine too. The rumor right now is that the engine will be a modified direct-injection version of the 1.5L four-cylinder Toyota uses in some international Corolla models (2NR-FKE), but we’re not convinced.

Even if the new sub-GT86 coupe is largely built on Mazda components, the car will still be inspired by an old Toyota model. Toyota’s source said, “The new coupe’s exterior look was inspired by the Toyota Sports 800 (pictured above) of 1965, but reinterpreted for the 21st Century.” The source also said that the new coupe is codenamed 69DZ, if that tells you anything. Aesthetically, it’ll be based on the Toyota 86 Cb Concept from the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show (below).

2013 Toyota 86 Cb Concept

The new baby coupe will serve as an entry-level offer to Toyota sports car lineup. Other rumors say that Toyota plans to develop another larger coupe that will slot above the GT86/FR-S, which would give them three solid sports car offers. As the cheapest of the bunch, the 69DZ will have a heavy emphasis on fun, agile driving, and not as much on interior quality. We hope that Toyota opts for a simple two-seat coupe for the superior cabin space, but empirical evidence points to a cramped 2+2 seating arrangement.

That being said, Toyota is taking extreme measures to make sure the mini-86 kicks butt on the road… Apparently they’ve enlisted the help of World Rally Championship racer Tommi Makinen to test and develop the new sports coupe. With that kind of real on-track experience behind the project, we sincerely hope that this new sports car will go from prototype to production before the end of the year. It’s certainly possible; Motoring’s source said, “Designers have a final prototype that could very well go into production as is.”

Here’s to hoping!

Fiat 124 Spider Will Be the Italian Mazda MX-5

Posted by Stephen On Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

2016 Mazda MX-5

We’ve known for a while now that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) and Mazda were working on a partnership around Mazda’s new MX-5 Miata roadster, which made its European debut last week in Geneva.

Thanks to a report from AutoExpress, we’ve just learned that Fiat’s version of the new roadster will be sold as the Fiat 124 Spider.

This fits perfectly in line with earlier rumors from late last year that Fiat had trademarked the 124 nameplate. At the time, the trademark application was confusing because Fiat actually already sold a 124 Spider from 1966 to 1980… We had no idea whether the trademark was meant to protect their old model’s name or introduce a newcomer. Turns out, it’s a little of both.

Old Fiat 124 Spider

The old Fiat 124 Spider was a four-seat convertible. With this news, we know that the new one will be a two-seat roadster sharing the same engine and platform as the Mazda MX-5. However, while the underpinnings will remain the same, Fiat plans to launch their sister car with a more retro styling than allowed by Mazda’s Kodo design language. Their car, execs say, will more closely emulate the early Fiat 124 of the 60’s – a traditional European roadster.

Click here to see Fiat’s first official projections for what the new 124 Spider might look like.

We also learned specific details of the partnership between Mazda and Fiat at Geneva. Both cars will be manufactured at Mazda’s Hiroshima plant. However, Mazda will get to take center stage with their new MX-5 for a full 12 months throughout 2015 and into 2016. Then, Fiat will launch their new Miata-based 124 Spider in 2016 once Mazda’s had plenty of time to make rounds through all the major auto events.

2016 Mazda MX-5 side view

In addition, we learned Fiat may offer an Abarth version of the new 124 Spider with an extra hot powertrain… Up to 200 hp hotter, in fact. However, we expect that Fiat will do their due diligence to determine demand for an up-tuned instead of launching it blindly alongside the 124 Spider.

Japanese Car Auction Find – 1997 Fiat Barchetta

1997 Fiat Barchetta

Unfortunately, there were no old Fiat 124s up for auction in Japan at the time of this writing. However, we did manage to dig up this ’97 Fiat Barchetta in our Integrity Exports Japanese car auction database. “Barchetta” means “little boat” in Italian, so you can see where this spunky little soft top gets its design.

1997 Fiat Barchetta rear

Under the hood you’ll find a 1.8L DOHC petrol engine that outputs 130 hp and 121 lb-ft of torque. Interestingly, this was the first Fiat production model to make use of variable camshaft timing to optimize engine performance. It’s got a top speed of 124 mph and accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in just a hair under 9 seconds (8.9 to be exact).

To learn more about this 1997 Fiat Barchetta, keep reading below the auction sheet:

1997 Fiat Barchetta auction sheet

“Interior C, exterior C, first registered June 1997, Barchetta model, five-speed manual gearbox, AC, official dealer left-hand drive import, grey and black interior, spare key, ABS, airbag, power steering, power windows, engine oil leak, glue on dashboard, light line scratches on exterior paintwork, seats have minor stains and medium wear and also fraying, shift knob is worn, ceiling lining grime, minor interior grime, steering wheel worn, touch paint marks, scratches underneath bumpers, aftermarket alloy wheels, fuel Paintwork is faded, front windshield has stone scratches, other marks as per map”

Official 2016 Mazda MX-5 Specs Released

Posted by Stephen On Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015

four generations of Miata

Mazda has finally released official details for their fourth-generation MX-5 Miata roadster, due out as a 2016 model at the end of this year. We already knew that it would feature a whole host of improvements, including a stiffer, lighter-weight chassis and a new sporty design. With today’s press release, we now have official powertrain specs and full details.

2016 MX-5 Miata top down

So, what can we expect under the hood of the 2016 Mazda MX-5?

The American-spec model will get a SKYACTIV-G 2.0L direct-injection engine that outputs 155 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque. That compact engine will be paired with a SKYACTIV-MT six-speed manual transmission and an advanced suspension – double wishbone in the front and multilink in the back.

2016 MX-5 Chassis

The outgoing Miata offers 167 hp and 140 lb-ft, so the new model will get fewer horsies but more torque. However, with a curb weight that’s over 100 kg less than the third-gen model, we expect that the 2016MY will feel faster and more responsive than ever, even if it’s technically less powerful.

2016 Mazda MX-5 roadster rear

To maximize the power of their new SKYACTIV-G engine, Mazda made a number of tuning improvements to the next-generation Miata.

First, the powertrain is mounted closer to the middle of the vehicle for a perfect 50:50 front-rear weight distribution. Second, Mazda has integrated a ton of aluminum into the vehicle’s body – the hood, the front fender, the bumper reinforcements and the trunk lid are all made from the lightweight alloy. The softtop of the convertible has also been reengineered for reduced weight, which enables an overall lower center of gravity in the 2016 model.

2016 Mazda MX-5 interior

This meticulous tuning continues inside the car too… Mazda tells us that the pedals, meters, controls and other equipment have all been positioned for ideal ergonomic driving. Visibility is better than ever with extra-thin A-pillars and a higher windshield header. With ventilated discs in the front and solid discs in the back, even the brakes feel more controllable and reassuring than the outgoing model.

To learn more, you can read Mazda’s full product release for the 2016 MX-5 Miata here

Japanese Car Auction Find – Audi TT 1.8TFSI

2012 Audi TT

Since we’ve already shown you a couple Mazda roadsters up for auction in Japan, today we’re showcasing one of the MX-5’s chief competitors – the Audi TT. What you see here is a pristine white 2012 Audi TT 1.8 TFSI.

2012 Audi TT rear view

This is the baseline model in the Audi TT’s lineup, but it has received high accolades from a number of different editorial reviewers like the folks at AutoExpress. It’s regarded as a fun and efficient sports car that offers a surprisingly sporty drive for its economical placement in the segment. You get a 0 to 60 time of just over 7 seconds paired with a fuel economy of 44.1 mpg.

2012 Audi TT interior

To learn more about this specific Japanese car auction find, keep reading the translation below the auction sheet:

2012 Audi TT auction sheet

“Interior A, exterior condition A, first registered September 2012, 1.8 TFSI model, 2WD, FAT, AC, original RS Coupe front bumper and side steps and rear spoiler, power steering, power windows, ABS, airbag, original AWs, original navigation system, minor interior grime, minor scratches, official dealer RHD model, marks as per map”

Mazda Shows Off Seven Aftermarket Models Before Tokyo Salon

Posted by Stephen On Sunday, December 21st, 2014

2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata Track Edition

We’ve had a lot of teasers come in over the past few weeks for the 2015 Detroit Motor Show, which is just a few weeks away in early January. However, on the other side of the world will be a not-quite-as-hyped automotive event of a slightly different nature. It’s the 2015 Tokyo Auto Salon – different from the Tokyo Motor Show – where automakers will show off aftermarket tuned versions of their normal lineup. Today, Mazda has given us a preview of seven tuned-up cars they’ll show off next month.

For starters, Mazda plans to show off the recently announced track addition of the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata (top). This is the car that goes hand-in-hand with last month’s announcement of a new Global Cup that Mazda will begin hosting next year at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in California. Mazda hadn’t given us any tech. specs with the initial announcement, so we hope they’ll enlighten us when the car breaks ground next month in Tokyo.

Tuned 2015 Mazda CX-3

Equally as exciting is the tuned up version of the new Mazda CX-3, seen above. You’ll notice that the aftermarket CX-3 rides a little bit lower than the all-new model we saw last month in Los Angeles. As for the kit itself, Mazda has added some really slick black rims, and a rather NISMO-looking bodykit if we do say so ourselves.

Tuned 2015 Mazda Demio Racing Concept

That NISMO-inspired theme continues with the Demio Racing Concept (aka. the Mazda2, above-top) and the hatchback version of the Mazda3 (aka. the Mazda Axela, not shown). Both cars get the minimalistic black, white and red treatment with new sideskirts and spoilers. Just imagine a slightly longer version of the Demio shown here, and that’s exactly what the Mazda3 hatch looks like.

Aftermarket 2015 Mazda 3 Axela Sedan

Things take a more vibrant direction with the sedan version of the Mazda3, shown above. The alloy rims fitted to the aftermarket Axela sedan are much more rugged, and the overall design is stouter than that of the hatchback. It feels somehow fuller, especially with the decals Mazda’s added along the side of the car… Black accents running just above the sideskirts, and a subtler gray streak that perfectly accents the feline body lines of the extra sporty 3.

Tuned 2015 Mazda Atenza

However, that extra sporty, track-ready theme isn’t the only look Mazda will go for at the 2015 Tokyo Auto Salon. The 2015 Mazda Atenza, what we know as the Mazda6, was previewed for us above with a classier and more refined body kit. The exterior is a pearlescent onyx black with sleek and chrome accents, with thin twin-spoke black alloys that blend perfectly into the body.

Tuned 2015 Mazda CX-5

The 2015 Mazda CX-5, which was already getting the refresh treatment for the new year, is also shown for us in that premium-feeling onyx black. What we particularly like about the SUV kit is the grille – notice in the image above how the lines are slightly thicker and more spread out than in any of the other models. That’s a design trick that’s very fitting for the larger car’s figure, and the new alloy rims showcase a similar design style.

2015 Mazda Tokyo Auto Salon

Of course, it’s perfectly possible that Mazda will bring three aftermarket versions of each of the seven models to the Tokyo Salon – one for each fo the color-schemes shown here. One of the preview images, seen above, shows the Demio Racing Concept in all three colors, so if we’re lucky, we’ll see 21 actual Mazdas on stage when doors open next month.

2014 Paris Motor Show Round-Up – Japanese Cars You Missed

Posted by Stephen On Friday, October 10th, 2014

The 2014 Paris Motor Show is finally coming to a close, and unfortunately we didn’t have time to give you in-depth coverage for every single new Japanese car that hit the stage in France. So, today we’re going to do a round-up of all the Japanese cars you might’ve missed from this week’s automotive event.

For your information, we already covered the Toyota C-HR, Nissan Pulsar NISMO, Suzuki Vitara and Infiniti Q80 Inspiration, so be sure to check those out if you haven’t already. Otherwise, read on.

Honda Civic Type-R

Honda Civic Type-R ConceptPhotograph: James Lipman +44 7803 885275

We’d already seen a very similar Honda Civic Type-R Concept earlier this year at the Geneva Motor Show. However, Honda took the liberty of divulging a few new specs for us in Paris. Some of these will sound familiar if you read our preview article, so we’ll be brief:

  • Powered by a newly developed high-revving 2.0L VTEC Turbo engine
  • Red-lines at 7,000 rpm and outputs 276hp
  • Sport-tuned six-speed manual transmission
  • Four-point Adaptive Damper System which varies stiffness with driving conditions
  • New +R button which maximizes performance from the engine and steering during intensive driving

Mazda MX-5 Miata

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata front

Again, we already knew what the 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata would look like, but we didn’t know what was hiding beneath its vibrant red hood.

Now we know that the 2015 MX-5 will get at least two engine options. Both will be gas-powered and will come from Mazda’s SKYACTIV suite. The first one is a 1.5L with 130bhp and the second is a larger 2.0L with 165bhp. Mazda is still working out the quirks in a possible diesel variant, but nothing’s been confirmed at the time of this writing. We’re guessing they’re still figuring out the diesel for their Mazda6.

If you’d like a more in-depth overview, the folks over at AutoExpress put together a splendid video of the new MX-5 taken live at the Paris Motor Show. You can check that out below:

Mitsubishi PHEV Concept S

2014 Mitsubishi PHEV Concept S

You might’ve seen this car last month ahead of its Paris Motor Show debut, and not much has changed since then. It’s a clean and stylish SUV whose simplicity betrays the complex technology beneath its hood. Up front, you’ll see the refreshed front-end complete with a chrome-lined X grille and similar chrome accents along the side and rear.

Mitsubishi did give us a few more technical details about the S Concept with its debut. It will be able to travel nearly 550 miles on a single tank and up to 34 miles on electric-only mode. This incredible fuel economy is achieved with a 2.0L petrol engine paired up with two advanced electric motors and a high-density lithium-ion battery.

Outlander PHEV Concept S black and burgundy interior

Surprisingly, our favorite part about the PHEV Concept S is its interior. Mitsubishi really outdid themselves with a classy black-and-burgundy color scheme made up of premium materials and plenty of amenities.

Infiniti QX70 S Design Package

Infiniti QX70 S Design exterior

Even though the Infiniti’s Q80 Insipiration Concept definitely stole the spotlight, the premium Japanese automaker brought another cool new car to the Paris Motor Show. It’s a brand-new design package for the Infiniti QX70 SUV.

The design package features a silver exterior with dark chrome accents in the grille, side sills and rear bumper. To match the dark chrome, the headlights have a new smoked finish and the 21-inch alloys showcase a crisp black paint job to go with the black roof rails and mirrors.

Infiniti QX70 S Design Package

Inside, the “dark side” theme continues with a black lacquer finish for the center console, and purple-stitched black leather upholstery throughout the cabin. For more images, check out Carscoops’s live photos of the QX70 S Design.

All in all, we’d say the 2014 Paris Motor Show was a great showing for Japanese automakers. Definitely a great way to kick off the end-of-year motor show season!

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Roadster Unveiled Today

Posted by Stephen On Friday, September 5th, 2014

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata front

The day we’ve been looking forward to for nearly a year now has finally arrived. Mazda officially revealed the all-new 2016 MX-5 Miata, the fourth generation of their iconic Japanese roadster. Even though the car won’t go on sale until next year, Mazda has given us plenty of mouth-watering technical details to pique our interest. More importantly, they’ve given us pictures. Behold the next-generation Mazda Miata:

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata rear

You can see that the Japanese automaker has refined their signature Kodo design language for their iconic sports car, giving it “the presence of a living creature and a strong sense of vitality.” It definitely looks straighter and cleaner than what you might’ve expected given the curvaceous Mazda3 and Mazda6, but in a good way. Mazda had already told us to expect the new Miata to harken back to the roadster’s roots by reversing the ‘bigger equals better’ trend of recent generations. We have to say, they really pulled it off; the car looks simple, fast and fun.

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Roadster side

The specs tell us that the new Mazda MX-5 is 105mm shorter than the outgoing roadster, but it doesn’t look stubby or fat. That’s because the majority of the length was taken from the front and rear overhangs; the wheelbase is only 15mm shorter than the old model. Mazda said that they were trying to move away from the classic British roadster by making the Miata compact and low-riding with a sharp, minimalist design. In fact, the new MX-5 has the lowest center of gravity of any model in the car’s 25-year history.

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata interior

To truly appreciate the engineering ingenuity that went into the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata, you really have to get behind the wheel and feel the car’s agility for yourself. Just imagine – the new model is claimed to be 200lbs lighter than the outgoing model with a perfect 50:50 weight distribution. The weight reduction is largely thanks to the heavy dose of aluminum you’ll find in the all-new SkyActiv-Chassis.

Unfortunately, Mazda didn’t tell us too much about the engine. All we know is that the roadster will run on a “specially tuned SKYACTIV-G petrol engine and the first rear-wheel drive version of the SKYACTIV-Chassis.” If you do a bit of poking around, you’ll find that most rumors suggest the new MX-5 will run on a 2.0L direct-injection four-cylinder engine paired with a six-speed manual transmission. A turbocharger is a possibility too.

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Cutaway

Clearly there’s still a lot we don’t know about the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata. For example, we don’t know pricing, trims, technology options or verified powertrain specs, and we don’t even have a definite arrival date. All we know is that it’ll be a 2016 model – which means it’ll go on sale in 2015 – and that we’ll definitely be hearing more about the next-gen roadster at a major auto show sometime before then, possibly in just a couple months.

Next-Gen Mazda MX-5 Debut, Possible Mazda RX-7, Mazda2 PHEV

Posted by Stephen On Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

July has been a busy month for Mazda, and we’re not even halfway through! We’ve had two big rumors and one piece of official news, so let’s start things off with what we know for sure:

New Mazda MX-5 to Debut September 3

Anniversary Mazda MX-5 Miata

Last week Mazda confirmed that the fourth-generation of their MX-5 Miata Eunos Roadster sports coupe will make its global debut on September 3. The little Japanese roadster will be unveiled simultaneously at three separate events held in the US, Spain and Japan. The US debut will be of particular interest since it will be held in Monterey, California, which also happens to be the location of the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

Unfortunately, we don’t have any images of the new Mazda MX-5 Miata. What’s pictured above is the Miata’s 25th anniversary edition, first seen at this year’s New York Auto Show. However, it’s unlikely that this car will be the basis for the next-gen model. All we’ve seen is the new model’s chassis, which was also on display in New York. Fortunately, even though we haven’t seen anything from the new Miata, Mazda has given us something to hear:

Is there any sound sweeter? Mazda says that the fourth generation Miata will be “lighter, stronger and with a physical footprint more in tune with its first-generation predecessor than with its heavier, larger current-day cousin.”

Mazda2 RE PHEV Rumor

Our Australian colleagues over at reported earlier this week that Mazda “is almost certain to produce a plug-in hybrid version of its third-generation Mazda2.”

Apparently, even though they’ve had a lot of success with hyper-efficient conventional engines, Mazda would like to try their hand at a plug-in hybrid. However, the Mazda2 RE PHEV would only be available in markets with significant government support (aka. tax breaks), and that’s if it ever makes it to production at all. This is because the only way that a hybrid car could reduce more CO2 – both during manufacture and on the road – than Mazda’s current SkyActiv engines is if half of a car’s sales are of the hybrid model.

Revived Mazda RX-7 Sports Car

One final rumor, again from the folks over at Motoring, states that Mazda is considering reviving their RX-7 sports car. The RX-7 Series 1 launched all the way back in 1978, and Mazda sold 811,634 of the two-door coupes from then until the car was axed in 2002.

The defining characteristics of the original Mazda RX-7 were its Wankel rotary engine and its twin-scroll turbocharger. Together, these components enable up to 33% more engine power at higher revolutions than a naturally aspirated engine of the same displacement. Now, Mazda is thinking about bringing the technology back in full force in a new RX-7, which will reportedly output something in the ballpark of 450hp. If the new car does come to fruition, it will likely be built on the RX-8 platform and feature the brand’s new Kodo design language.

Unfortunately, Motoring estimates that we won’t see the new RX-7 until May of 2017. So, we’ve got a while to wait until we’ll know whether this particular rumor is true or false.


25th Anniversary Mazda MX-5 Miata Sold Out in 10 Minutes

Posted by Stephen On Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

2015 Mazda Miata Anniversary Edition Front

Mazda opened preorders for their 25th Anniversary Mazda MX-5 Miata just a few days ago on May 20 at 1:25PM. By 1:35 PM, all 100 special edition models of the iconic roadster had been accounted for; the 25th Anniversary model was available for a full 10 minutes. It turns out we’re not the only die-hard Mazda fans left in the US.

Apparently there were actually 250 people who registered at the special edition MX-5’s pre-order site in those first 10 minutes, but only 100 will be lucky enough to complete the payment verification process. However, each recipient will still have to wait several months to pick up their 25th Anniversary Edition Miata, as they won’t arrive until the rest of the 2015MY MX-5’s hit dealerships later this year.

Now that you know just how fast Mazda’s special edition roadsters flew off the shelf, you’re probably curious about what you missed…

2015 Mazda Miata Anniversary Edition

The 25th Anniversary Edition MX-5, as you can see, gets a very vibrant Soul Red Metallic paint job with Brilliant Black trim. This color scheme is accented by the black Power-Retractable Hardtop and the Dark Gunmetal 17-inch aluminum alloy wheels. A similar color scheme continues in the interior (below) with Almond leather seats, black stitching, red accents and satin chrome finish across the dash, along with beautiful 25th Anniversary badging on the headrests and scuff plates.

2015 Mazda Miata Anniversary Edition Interior

The goodies don’t stop there, either… To help each of the 100 lucky drivers live up to the beauty of the limited edition MX-5 Miata, each vehicle will come with a custom Tourneau automatic watch. We’re talking the full Swiss treatment here – Italian-made black leather straps, Mazda’s custom Soul Red stitching and deployment buckle, sapphire crystal face and case back, and of course a Swiss-made ETA 2824-2 movement. You’ll even get a Mazda-badged display winder box to keep the watch wound when you’re not wearing it.

The premium trend continues beneath the hood of the 25th anniversary edition Miata, where those lucky 100 customers will find only the best of the best. Each and every model has been tailor-made with the hand-selected engine parts by Mazda’s best engineers. Jim O’Sullivan, president and CEO of Mazda North American Operations, elaborates by saying, “It’s no secret the MX-5 Miata 25th Anniversary Edition is a specially-crafted ‘Thank you’ to every MX-5 fan – former, current and hopefully future… Since day one, this vehicle has been a true driver’s car and we hope to continue to build upon its dynamic legacy for generations to come.”

So, even if you missed out on this amazing 25th anniversary edition of Mazda’s beloved roadster, stick around for another 25 years and you’ll probably get a chance at their 50th anniversary edition. This is a car that Mazda intends to keep in their lineup for a long, long time.