Nagare is no more. Speaking to Mazda Europe’s British design boss Peter Birtwhistle, he confirmed that the flowing design language that has dictated the Mazda look in recent years is set to be replaced.
“Nagare is done. After the 5, it’s highly unlikely that there will be another nagare car. Mazda has moved on.”
Laurens van den Acker, who has since left the company for Renault, created the look which has only bee applied in full to one production car, the Mazda5 due to go on sale in the UK in November.
Read our exclusive early drive of the Mazda5 here
But top brass in Japan aren’t convinced by the flowing look, which Birtwhistle confirms was “particularly difficult to apply to a boxy people carrier shape.”
As for what’s next, that’s up to Mazda’s new design chief, Ikuo Maeda. Birtwhistle confirmed that Mazda is aiming to become “more like a Japanese Alfa Romeo, producing cars which are great to drive, but crucially that also have the right premium feel, particularly inside.”
A number of concepts are being designed under the working title of “thrusting motion”. Maeda will select a winner at an internal Mazda event due to be held in Milan in September. The winning car will debut at the Paris Motor Show, where the name for Mazda’s new design philosophy - which Birtwhistle assures us will be much more appropriate for a UK audience – will also be announced.
The show is also the venue where former boss van den Acker will show off his vision for new employer Renault.