Mazda MX-5 2015: release date, price and pictures

19 Jun, 2014 1:00pm Jack Rix

Everything you need to know about the new Mazda MX-5, due on sale in 2015

The next chapter in the Mazda MX-5 roadster story will open in 2015 with an all new MX-5 that's being being developed in conjunction with Fiat Group. It was originally thought that the Mazda MX-5 would also spawn a new Alfa Romeo Spider but rumours have since suggested that Fiat could use the technology to create an Abarth badged sports car.

The price of the new model has not been announced yet, but don't expect too much movement from the current MX-5's price of around £20,000. The car will be revealed in September ahead of the Paris Motor Show 2014.

Mazda MX-5: SKYACTIVE chassis technology 

Mazda MX-5 chassis

Mazda gave us our first insight into the technology that will underpin the all-new fourth-generation MX-5  at the 2014 New York Motor Show but the item on display wasn't the new Mazda MX-5 itself. Instead, the advanced new SKYACTIV-chassis and engine that will form the backbone of the new MX-5 was revealed. Mazda confirmed the engine will be positioned behind the front axle and closer to the car’s centre than ever before, plus the centre of gravity will be lower than previous generations – factors that should improve the handling.

The new chassis has also been engineered for “outstanding body rigidity and crashworthiness”, while the weight has been reduced by more than 100kg through the use of thinner, higher-strength steels. As a result, entry-level soft-top models are expected to weigh less than 1,050kg.

Mazda Mx-5 2015: spy shots

Mazda MX-5 test mule front quater

Check out the gallery above to find the first pictures of what will be new Mazda MX-5. The shots show a test mule, which was spotted testing in Michigan.

Mazda MX-5 2015: engine technology

This test mule pictured is likely to be using the 1750TB engine from the Alfa 4C, which could find its way under the bonnet of the new Alfa Spider. The 1.75-litre four-cylinder engine develops 237bhp and as Alfa engineers are aiming for a sub-1000kg kerbweight, the Spider could have similar performance figures to the 4C. From Mazda's point of view, a hot version of the MX-5, which would rival the Alfa Spider with the 1750TB engine isn’t likely. Mazda’s primary focus at the moment is all about weight saving and reducing CO2 emissions via the SkyActiv technology.

The MX-5 engine range is more likely to include a pair of more economical naturally-aspirated four-cylinder SKYACTIV petrol engines – one a 1.5-litre unit and the other a 2.0-litre, with around 130bhp and 165bhp respectively. A manual gearbox will continue to be offered, with an auto as an option.

Mazda, meanwhile, is also considering fitting the MX-5 with a diesel engine for the first time, but a new 130bhp 1.6-litre petrol engine featuring SkyActiv technology, is expected to be the pick of the bunch.

Mazda MX-5 2015: design and styling

Mazda has dropped more clues as to how its new MX-5 will look when it is unveiled later in 2014. Chief designer Peter Birtwhistle told Auto Express that it will be more masculine than the current car when we met him at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show.

Said Birtwhistle: “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.”

The car will not share the Mazda family face seen on the Mazda 3 hatchback - it will get a unique design.

“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," said Birtwhistle.

“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.”

Fiat collaboration

The venture with Fiat is organised so that the two companies can share the initial investment and boost profits. However, the Fiat model that will use the same technology as the new Mazda MX-5 is not expected until the end of 2015 so the Mazda will get a clear run at the roadster market. An Abarth version of the car has also been rumoured but details of this are just as sketchy. The current MX-5 is known as the MX-5 Miata in North America and the Roadster in Japan.

Besides the basic steel structure, the Mazda MX-5 won’t share very much with the Fiat version. With high-strength steels used throughout, engineers are aiming to strip at least 100kg from the current MX-5’s kerbweight, with 1,050kg the target figure.

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A good move for Mazda, small capacity turbo engines. Fuel efficiency should be greatly improved, and shedding 100kg is only going to accentuate efficiency, handling and straight line performance. The only issue would be the slight lag in initial throttle response.

The MX5 desperately needs to achieve better fuel efficiency without loosing its fun factor if its to survive into the future. Nobody wants a car that realistically gives 30+ mpg in today's climate of increasing fuel costs.

I run a Mk1 MX-5 as a weekend car and love it to bits and I am keenly awaiting the new one - but if they fit that grill and heavy-looking body, I'll be more inclined to buy the Alfa.

The current models all achieve 30+ MPG....mine is the best part of 40MPG...

Saw the new front end and bought a 2013 Club model before they ruin the car.

This is an old Photochop from months ago. When they say "Exclusive" image, what they meant to say is "found by our graphics intern". Should've gone with this image: attachment.php

If it really looks that hideous, then I won't be getting one. Sports cars should have low front profiles and not look like American trucks. In almost all other respects it would be my ideal car. So I guess it's time for a GT86. Plus a turbo is a bad idea and the wheels need more rubber on them to survive in the UK.

The title of this article is misleading as the 2014 MX5 is already out. Check Autotrader and you will find many dealers with the 2014 MX-5 already on lot. This article is about the 2015 MX5, not the 2014.

30 or 40mpg is pretty poor for such a small roadster, lets see some innovation.

It won't be a turbo or a high strung version of the S2000, but I expect that MPG will be enhanced. My old 93 1.6L delivers 28-30 in town and 37-40(US gallons) on the hiway and I'm perfectly satisfied with the Torque and Hp on the street.

If I want blistering performance, I trailer my Sevenesque style roadster to the track and its LS376 with 530Hp delivers it in abundance.

If you want more MPG then buy a Prius. This is a sports car.

You said 30 + MPG which they all do. Furthermore, at least they actually are on or in some cases above claimed figures.

Some new cars are so far off the mark in relation to MPG it is an actual joke.

Oh and just to further add if you want a boring 1 litre turbo engine get something else. Or some serious MPG buy a boring diesel.

The whole point of the MX5 and it's brilliance is it's smooth NA MZR engine allowing brilliant throttle control with little brake intervention down sweeping A/ B roads where it really shows many modern cars two fingers.

If anything Mazda will put a Skyactiv engine in there allowing the the MPG to improve, but ultimately you are still buying a form of sports car...MPG will never ever be top of that list nor practicality. The ultimate thing and the real mark of the MX-5 is just simple plain old FUN.

Do you have clue that Mazda is a sports car and not a fuel saver car? I agree with someone here you better look at Prius and not sports roadster that is built more for performance car. BTW I compete with old Miata that was modified. Its mileage at competition is barely 15mpg and 25mpg on highways plus it takes only premium fuel as timing is changed. It is just you asked for Porsche... but fuel saving one.

The opposite of lipstick on a pig springs to mind. That really is one horrible front end. Strayed further from the beautiful Lotus Elan clone original. Hideous. Alfa will clean up.

This is an excellent example of how an original design evolves into a complete mess. The Mark 1 was without doubt the best looking version and all later versions gradually got worse and worse. This has happened time and time again.Example- the first E-Type was the best, the later ones were watered down versions of the original.

"Poor mileage" is also a matter of opinion.

The headline is very misleading - the pictures are of a test mule. There is no release date mentioned (other than being sometime in 2015), and the price statement is "don't expect too much movement from the current MX-5's price of around £20,000." Give me a break!

So they want to appeal to the "young" drivers who can't afford the insurance, let alone the car..! Doh

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