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Old 08-16-2011, 05:43 AM   #1
AVANTI R5
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Default Gotcha! Next Mazda MX-5 Miata




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For the past couple of years, we've been sharing everything we've uncovered about the next-generation Mazda MX-5 Miata. We've told you that in 2013, Mazda plans to return to the car's original 1989 roots by making it lighter, more fuel-efficient, and cleaner. We've also shown you a couple of artist's impressions of the new model.

Now, we have definitive information about the MX-5's new styling direction from a rock-solid source. A senior editor at Japan's Holiday Auto magazine tells us that if you know where to look, you can find just about anything on the Internet these days. Even official manufacturer drawings of future models! That's exactly what we have here.

Based on a technical drawing supplied by Mazda to the Tokyo Patent Office recently, our artist has composed a sketch you see here of what to expect in the aesthetics department from the new roadster. And it's surprisingly simple.

The new MX-5's grille will take on a more basic oval shape along the lines of the first-generation car, a departure from the current model's large "smiley face" grille. The headlights have been given a distinct up-slanting teardrop shape. From what we see in this exclusive sketch, the proportions are almost identical to the 1989 car.

The first-generation NA model, which measured in at roughly 156 by 66 by 49 inches and boasted a 120-hp, 1.6-liter engine, was upgraded in 1998 with a bigger 140-hp, 1.8-liter powerplant. Pressure for more power from overseas markets (especially the U.S.) forced Mazda to fit a 160-hp, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder unit in 2005, something chief engineer Takao Kijima reportedly did not want to do.

Kijima's long-term goal to take the MX-5 back to basics rubbed off on his successor, next-generation MX-5 chief engineer Nobuhiro Yamamoto, who says his aim was to create a sub-2200-pound roadster. When planning for the new model started five years ago, around the same time as Mazda's revolutionary Skyactiv technology, the company's mission was to reduce fuel consumption by 30 percent and curb weight by at least 8 percent. The product planners told Yamamoto that he had to lighten and downsize the car, but maintain current interior space levels. After exhaustive restyling, an insider tells us Yamamoto achieved a curb weight of around 2100 pounds, thanks to the car's new lightweight construction made possible in large part through the use of Mazda's new weight-efficient Skyactiv chassis, powertrain, and body.

And with a lighter car, "you can downsize the powertrain," says a source close to Mazda. The new MX-5 will be fitted with a 1.5-liter Skyactiv-G engine generating around 125 hp with mileage north of 50 mpg in Japanese measurements, mated to a six-speed manual transmission. Meanwhile, the U.S.-spec model will continue to employ a 2.0-liter engine producing upwards of 145 hp.

Slated for a March 2013 debut at the Geneva Motor Show, the new production model is expected to land in showrooms in the fall of 2013.

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Old 08-16-2011, 08:47 AM   #2
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not bad. if I can fit in it.
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Old 08-16-2011, 08:49 AM   #3
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I hate auto-rag "artist renderings"
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Old 08-16-2011, 09:19 AM   #4
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I can relate with that but I think this one has some merit. That's why I posted it.
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Old 08-16-2011, 09:55 AM   #5
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Now, the next question is: Can you fit a 5.0 L Mustang V8 in that thing.
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:06 AM   #6
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If this is even close to what the finished product will look like then Mazda have outdone themselves.

Never in a million years did I think they could produce a car that looks more girly than the first 3 generations, this car has surpassed the wildest dreams of hairstylists (female and male) everywhere.
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:30 AM   #7
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What exactly makes it look girly??
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:36 AM   #8
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I've never owned a Miata, but I've been able to drive one a lot. It's funny that the most common comment about the car is how girlie it is or how it should only appeal to hairstylist, but the truth is: it's a great driver's car. There's a reason why it's one of the most raced, if not the most raced, vehicle for hard-core amature racers. Go to any SCCA or NASA event and you'll find racers that respect the Miata regardless of what vehicle they drive.

I've driven a Miata around a track and it's one of the most satisfying track experiences I've had. The chassis is light and tight. The shifter is one of the best in the business. The steering is nicely weighted and it goes where you point it. Plus it's simple, reliable and durable.
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:39 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AVANTI R5 View Post
What exactly makes it look girly??
In the image above? The eyes (headlights) drawn up on the side like a 1940s pin-up.
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:43 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by max_stirling View Post
Now, the next question is: Can you fit a 5.0 L Mustang V8 in that thing.
If, as the article says, the dimensions are the same as the NAs, then www.flyinmiata.com does it every day. Well, using GM engines anyway.

Jim
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:47 AM   #11
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I thnk the rendering looks pretty darn good. Not the best color, imo, but in silver, black, red, or white that design would look cool. It will be really interesting to see if they can make the weight target. That would be very fun to test drive.
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:49 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Siper2 View Post
In the image above? The eyes (headlights) drawn up on the side like a 1940s pin-up.

Yeah.. I think once we see the whole car back and sides it might be less girly.. I still think front is cute whoops
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:50 AM   #13
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Good call.
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Old 08-16-2011, 11:10 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AVANTI R5 View Post
I can relate with that but I think this one has some merit. That's why I posted it.
Since the "patent sketch" appears to be detailing something behind the front grill (or at least something other than design) I'd be 99% sure that the next Miata will look almost nothing like this artist's sketch.
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Old 08-16-2011, 11:15 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robmarch View Post
not bad. if I can fit in it.
Or if I can sit in it without having the top of the windshield right in my field of view.
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Old 08-16-2011, 11:44 AM   #16
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Looks girly... that aqua color does not help make it less girly either.

I'd still rock it though.

S
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Old 08-16-2011, 02:09 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Siper2 View Post
In the image above? The eyes (headlights) drawn up on the side like a 1940s pin-up.
not to mention the driving lights are very similar to dimples in a smiling girls cheeks.

the entire rendering is curves, not a single hard edge to the car.

hard edges are masculine, curves are feminine. I didn't make the rules, but those are they.
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Old 08-16-2011, 02:15 PM   #18
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I think the artist stinks, as he stuck the 'everybody has to have it' side vents on the front fender. This is just another example of 'me too' rendering.
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Old 08-16-2011, 03:08 PM   #19
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Girly or not, I dream of the day I will be able to have a third car so that I can get whatever version of a Miata. And I don't even like open tops in general.
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Old 08-16-2011, 03:32 PM   #20
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Miata is girly, but I only see guys driving it.

Hummer is manly, but I only see women driving it.
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Old 08-16-2011, 03:53 PM   #21
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Looks like a bar of soap
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Old 08-16-2011, 04:04 PM   #22
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Looks like a double from a Pixar Cars movie. A couple of teeth in the mouth there and you have Mater's girlfriend.
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Old 08-16-2011, 04:10 PM   #23
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Yeah your right.. It is cartoonish looking
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Old 08-16-2011, 05:21 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott_gunn View Post
Miata is girly, but I only see guys driving it.

Hummer is manly, but I only see women driving it.
This.

These new Miata speculations make it seem kind of like a K-car sized sports car, something like a Cappuccino.
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:04 AM   #25
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Looks MUCH better than the NC, almost as nice as my NB.

I hope Mazda offers an option to black-out the A-pillars and windshield header.
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