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More Details On Next-Gen 2013 Mazda MX-5

 
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2009 Mazda MX-5 Superlight Concept

We've been reporting that the next-gen Mazda MX-5 will be smaller and lighter--as light as 2,200 pounds--since last November, so today's news consists mostly of smaller details, centered primarily around the design of the car. Unlike the Superlight concept which presaged the shift back to the roadster's roots, the next-gen car will likely sport the Nagare influence we've seen on several other concepts and production cars.

The latest rumors give us the outlines of one likely possibility for the powertrain, and flesh out some of the rest of the talk. Instead of the naturally-aspirated engines rumored before, the latest from WhatCar? says it may be a 1.5-liter Skyactiv engine that gets the nod, hinting that power output could be at least as high as the current 166-horsepower MX-5, and possibly higher--while still weighing in about 200 pounds less than the current car. Electric power steering is under consideration, according to the report, but may not see production due to difficulties in getting the feel necessary for a sports car. Also, a new date is named: late 2012 as a 2013 year-model.

The Nagare itself was a concept shown at several shows in 2006, its streamlined features and flowing, wave-like details now familiar in the 2010 Mazda3, the 2011 Mazda5, and in elements of other vehicles in the refreshed Mazda lineup. The MX-5 could get an even more Nagare-inspired design, though as one of Mazda's most important models, it will also have to be acceptable to the masses.

For powertrains, there have been previous rumors that the next MX-5 will get 50-plus miles per gallon from one of Mazda's new SKY-G family of direct-injection four-cylinders. The new engine could displace as little as 1.3-liters, though a 1.5-liter will be more likely for U.S. sale. That's 0.1-liters smaller than the original Miata/MX-5, so the new car will need to be light to offer satisfactory performance.

Power for the 1.5-liter SKY-G engine is estimated at 125 horsepower and 105 pound-feet of torque--a significant step down from the current car's 167 horsepower and 140 pound-feet, but saving 300-350 pounds from the 2010 model's weight could mean the 2012 MX-5 would have only a slight disadvantage in power-to-weight ratio, while improving handling and transitional performance. Larger SKY-G engines are also under development, however, so the next MX-5 could get more power. We've also heard the MX-5 could go rotary or even rotary-hybrid, though we doubt those reports.

On the transmission end, a six-speed manual is expected as standard, while a dual-clutch unit could be available as an option.

[Autocar, WhatCar?]



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Comments (9)
  1. That car is HOT!!! If the production version has clean lines like that, AND reduced weight, how can that not be anything but a winner. BUT, please Mazda, do not give it the "smile" front end!!! Miata's have never been glitzy but the simplistic design has stood the test of time.
     
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  2. No, Mazda, no! Under NO circumstances can you put a rotary engine in this car! Yes, a small turbo or twin-turbo set-up might work but don't throw away gas mileage and long-term durability for one more try at that %$&* engine.
     
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  3. Is it really too much to ask for two transmissions (stick, dual-clutch) and two powerplants (1.5 and 1.3 twin turbo)? Are their planners really that inept? The vehicle has been manufactured for 20 years. Can't they please frugal sportscarists as well as enthusiasts?
     
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  4. Well, I've owned an NB in the past and currently drive an original 1990 NA banger.
    It's hard to think of how to improve the MX-5 from generation to generation - if you look at NA to NB to NC you'll see little has changed so I doubt Mazda will fool with the concept too much.
    If Mazda succumbs to the green theme, the style theme or the power theme then it'll no longer be an MX-5.
    I doubt they'll forget MX-5 heritage they way they forgot the RX-7 heritage; it's just too lovable to spoil.
     
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  5. what has keep me back from buying this car is the price its way to much for all the goodies!!!!!!
     
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  6. You shopped for a wrong car Steve! Mazda Mx-5 is not about "goodies". In fact its about being plane and simple gadget stripped true light weight sports car! no one can offer the sheer driving joy the MX-5 offers at this price range.
     
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  7. I think mazdas new roadster should maintain its current size and comfort (hardtop, etc.), but should introduce a dual clutch gearbox as an option, should keep at least a 2.0 liter engine, should introduce a speed version (say, cx7 turbo or speed3), and introduce the new design language. there you have an even better seller. give an option to real enthusiast who want power in a car. Even Lotus Elise is getting bigger for 2015.
     
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  8. mazda mx-5 is just that. It is going back to it's roots to revive what it really was. Nowadays every car company is making their cars bigger and bigger cuz americans who form a big market share are getting fatter and fatter and need comfort. mazda's driving is not bone breaking as it is but if you need a big car with driving comfort and strong engine why not get the Camry V6?
     
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  9. No. That car is NOT hot. It's just silly looking. Man, I hope they don't mess too much with the Miata's styling. It's already classic.
     
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