The all new Mazda MX-5 roadster, that is being developed in conjunction with Alfa Romeo, will likely go on sale in 2015. At present, the vehicle is still in the testing phase, being seen as a test mule in Michigan. The current MX-5 model is known as the Miata in North America and the Roadster in Japan.
The Mazda and Alfa Romeo collaboration
This new venture with Alfa Romeo is organised so that the two companies can share the initial investment and boost profits. However the new Mazda MX-5 will get a clear run of the roadster market, as the Alfa Romeo Spider is not due until the end of 2015.When produced, besides basic steel structure, the MX-5 won't share much with the Alfa.
The Mazda MX-5 details
The test mule is likely using the 1750TB, 1.75 litre four cylinder engine from the Alfa 4C that develops 237 brake horse power, which could find it's way onto the new Spider model. However, the Mazda company are considering fitting their new model with a diesel engine for the first time, though a new 130 brake horse power 1.6 litre petrol unit featuring SkyActiv technology is expected to be the main choice. The likelihood of the company creating a 1750TB engine powered MX-5 is slim, as the companys main focus at present is in reducing CO2 emissions through the SkyActiv technology.
Hints have been dropped about how the new MX-5 will look, with chief designer, Peter Birtwhistle, commenting that the new model will be more masculine than the current, “If I had to describe it in one word, it’d be ‘edgy’. I think it will be a surprise for people. It’s a tight edgy little car that is going to appeal to a broader range of people. We know the clichés about the MX-5 as it gets older, but this will position it differently. I think it’ll attract a lot of young guys.”
It is definite that the new model will not share the family face seen on the Mazda 3 hatchback, instead receiving a unique design. Birtwhistle continued, “We need to take on some of the flavor of Kodo [Mazda’s design language], but we have to ensure it is identifiable as an MX-5. It is a standalone product for us. You sometimes think after three generations let’s start afresh with a clean sheet of paper. But you have a massive customer base who have a connection with the previous car, so you have to tread carefully.”
Pricing for the model has yet to be confirmed, but is likely to remain close to that of the current MX-5's £20,000 price tag. The Mazda MX-5 will first be revealed later this year, before it's expected 2015 release.