Posts Tagged ‘mazda miata’

Mazda Unveils The MX-5RF Retractable Fastback

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Many people including myself thought the Miata lineup was going to get a new powered retractable hardtop here in New York but instead Mazda showed off the MX-5RF which stands for Retractable Fastback. Lowering the top takes about 5-6 seconds after flipping a switch and involves the rear supports lifting up out of the way while the roof and rear window fold backwards into the void above the trunk. It’s important to note that top up or down, the trunk space is unaffected. The RF doesn’t provide as much of the open air experience that a full on convertible would but this design was probably chosen due to weight savings for this generation Miata.

One thing is for sure and it’s the fact the MX-5RF looks fantastic. Under the hood nothing has changed. The North American market will continue to get the 2.0L and 1.5L SKYACTIV-G engines paired with a 6-speed automatic or manual transmission. Miata hasn’t provided any detailed specifications including the official open and closing times of the roof, or the weight gain of the MX5-RF over the soft top model. At the press conference this morning, Mazda announced this morning that they also picked up the 2016 World Car of the Year and World Car Design of the Year awards for the MX-5. For the latter, it is the first time a Japanese model has won the award.

“What a wonderful honor, to have the Mazda MX-5 named World Car of the Year,” said Masahiro Moro, President and CEO, Mazda North American Operations, and Managing Executive Officer, Mazda Motor Corporation. “As our iconic MX-5 roadster approaches one-million units of production, this award is proof that it is as young, vibrant, fun and relevant as ever. While I accept this award on behalf of the company, I do so representing every Mazda employee, retail partner and customer around the world who has ever felt the joy of driving a pure roadster. We say ‘Driving Matters’ in our advertising,* and we prove it in our cars.”

Take a look at our gallery for more pictures of the Mazda MX-5RF.

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Fiat’s 124 Spyder Gives Me Everything I Wanted in a BRZ

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Turbo and a soft-top. Turbo and a soft-top. Turbo and a soft-top.

Give me a BRZ with a small turbo and a soft-top and you’ll be blinded by my firm and vigorous smile. While Toyobaru are busy making the GT86 exactly the same, Fiat has stepped in with their Italian passion™ and delivered me the revived 124 Spider. 1.4L turbo in the front sending 184 lb/ft to the rear wheels and my throbbing grin enjoying open air in between. And while we get double-wishbone front suspension and multilink rear, the good news ends there. It advertises light electric steering, which is the opposite of what I wanted to hear, and there’s suspicious lack of mentioned LSD.

It’s also got wheels and ride height that look better suited on a 90s Miata. The exterior design is nice, certainly nicer than anything else in Fiat’s North American line-up, but could look awkward outside of a showroom. The interior is also nice and lacks the quirks that make the 500 something for people who can be described as “bubbly”, but it could also bring the price of the car into unwelcome territory. That’s not to say it’s going to be a bad car, or that something amazing has been been tainted by a couple small failures, but my mouth has been downgraded to a semi-smirk to try and manage expectations.

At the very least, the 124 Spider is another entrant into the growing “little fun” segment that has been shamefully sparse for the last decade. I can’t wait to drive one. Though $10 says I finish my review with “I’d rather have a BRZ with a turbo and soft-top”.

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Mazda Shows Off Two Lightweight Miata Concepts At SEMA

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It’s not like the standard MX-5 roadster was a heavyweight, but Mazda designers wanted to see what could be achieved if weight savings were pushed to the limits. They were given free reign to craft a couple examples of lightweight prototypes based on the MX-5 and the result are the two concepts below: The 2016 MX-5 Spyder Concept and 2016 MX-5 Speedster Concept.

The MX-5 Spyder takes the unique characteristics of a vintage roadster and modernizes it to include a bespoke leather interior and a fresh new Mercury Silver prototype paint color.

For the MX-5 Speedster, Miata designers took it to extremes while paying homage to the minimalist roadsters of the ’50s. Painted in a Blue Ether paint, the MX-5 Speedster even ditches the windshield in favor of a carbon fiber deflector providing that true wind in the hair driving experience.

Both of these vehicles weigh significantly less than the already light 2,332 pound MX-5 roadster. Take a look through our gallery and let us know what you think!

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Mazda Brings New MX-5 Miata To First Auto Show

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While Mazda has already unveiled the new ND MX-5 Miata back in September, it is making it’s first official International Auto Show appearance here in Los Angeles. There still isn’t a whole lot of information coming from Mazda, all we know is that the ND Miata is quite a bit shorter than the previous generation (about 100mm) and has a shorter wheelbase, although just a fraction of the overall shortened length (15mm). Weight is still not known but Mazda claims it has shed at least 200 pounds distributed with an even 50:50 ratio. We’ve seen the car a few times now so hopefully the next show we see it, Mazda will reveal the full specifications.

They did bring another variant here to LA which we’ve shot some pictures of. In fact it was at SEMA a couple weeks ago but we somehow missed it when we went through their booth. I’m still trying to figure out how we missed it since they only had a couple cars, but perhaps we were distracted by the model standing next to it? Anyways, we’ve included a bunch of pictures of the Mazda MX-5 Miata Cup car this time so check it out after the break.

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Mazda’s Parade Of Miatas At The NYIAS

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For the 25th birthday of the Miata, Mazda put together a huge number of historically significant Miata’s throughout it’s history at the New York International Auto Show. #14, #15, and #17, the world debut cars from the 1989 Chicago Auto Show are here, as well as #500,000 and #700,000 milestone cars. Many other Miatas dot its history, and Mazda has done a great job of rounding out the most interesting ones from the last 25 years.

Check out the massive 75 pic gallery after the jump.


Mazda Celebrates Miata’s 25th Birthday With Anniversary Edition


As the Mazda Miata turns 25 this year, Mazda is churning out a 25th Anniversary Edition to celebrate the occasion. The 25th Anniversary Edition revealed here in New York is based on the power retractable hard top model, and available with either manual or automatic transmissions. The only color available is Soul Red Metallic, and other details includes white leather upholstery and door trim, hand-finished decorative panel, Bilstein dampers, and black painted roof, A-pillars, and door mirrors.

Click through for more pics of the 25th Anniversary Miata.