Mazda revealed its next-generation 2016 MX-5 roadster September 3, roughly 25 years after the first-generation car, then called ‘Miata,’ made its debut.
While most modern cars seem to be getting bigger and heavier, the new-generation Mazda – known internally as ‘ND’ – is actually the most compact MX-5 yet, more than 100 kilograms lighter than its predecessor.
Chief designer Peter Birtwhistle says Mazda wanted to go for a more “edgy,” masculine look with the 2016 MX-5, in part because the car has long been thought of as more feminine by non-car enthusiasts.
But the MX-5 shares just a little of the ‘Kodo’ design language Mazda’s currently employed across the rest of their line. That’s in part because the company considers it “a standalone product” completely separate from their sedans, Birtwhistle says.
Mazda has yet to release details regarding the new MX-5’s powertrain, but has previously confirmed the engine will be positioned lower and closer to the center of the car than ever before. That, along with the car’s new advanced SKYACTIV chassis, should greatly improve handling.
Mazda says the car will hit dealers in Japan this fall, and will then be rolled out to other markets. The company has sold more than 940,000 MX-5s sold as of July, making them the Guinness World Record holders for best-selling two-seater sports car.
The 2016 MX-5 was developed in conjuction with rival Fiat, who will later this year be releasing their own roadster using some of the same technologies as found on the MX-5.