ONE OF the most anticipated reveals of the year is drawing closer with the news that the next-generation Mazda MX-5 will be unveiled in Barcelona to an invited audience on September 3-4, and simultaneously in Japan and the US.
The most important people, the enthusiasts and buyers who will decide whether the new model will be a success, will get their chance to see the fourth-generation MX-5 two days later on September 6. Both occasions will celebrate the sports car’s 25th anniversary.
So far, all we’ve seen of the car is its chassis which features Mazda’s weight-saving Skyactiv technology, already found in models such as the CX-5 and new 3. The car maker has confirmed the engine will be mounted behind the front axle and closer to the car’s centre than ever before, while the MX-5’s centre of gravity will be lower; all good news for those who value good handling.
The new car will be around 100kg lighter, which means entry-level soft-tops could come in at under 1,050kg, assuming they are not loaded with too much new equipment.
So that’s the dynamic side of the car sorted; what we won’t know until the silk sheets are raised from the presentation models and the dry ice clears is what the new MX-5 will look like. All Mazda’s chief designer Peter Birtwhistle will say on that score is that the new MX-5 will be “a tight, edgy little car that will be clearly identifiable as an MX-5.”
Here’s hoping he’s revived some of that Mk 1 spirit.