It has been a joyful and record-breaking 25 years of production for Mazda’s fun-factory, the MX-5. Tonight the automotive industry has tuned in to Monterey, California to see the unveiling of an all-new 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata.
This tiny roadster has always been a head turner therefore analysis of this new model has to start with the looks. The front end is sharp and mean, it has freshened nose styling evidently congruent with the latest Mazda3 and Mazda6 models. The headlights and surrounding body have a shape evident of a calculated design; as much as it surely aids the engineering of the car, but a part of me still would have loved to see the pop-ups make a comeback.
The back of the convertible does justice to its predecessor as it maintains the general layout (minus those turn signals), yet steps into the future with sharp body edges connected by bold curves. The side panels eloquently connect it all together and retain the outline of a long front, small hump for the 2-passenger compartment, and a stubby back-end that could be identified instantly. Strong fender flares housing meaty tires on dark rims remind us that the Miata means business.
On the performance topic, tonight’s reveal has not provided much information. We do know that the new model will shed around 220 pounds and that the whole enchilada of SKYACTIV technology will be involved. It’s essentially that the iconic formula of rear wheel drive and a four-banger up front will be carried forward. More importantly, a primary focus on handling and the six-speed manual transmission are integral aspects and should be here to stay. Overall, the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata evokes a pleasurable aura and its myriad of fans around the world are ready for it.