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Archive for the ‘Mazda’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Care to get a Mazda MX-5 to go with Your Copy of Gran Turismo Sport?

Gran Turismo Sport has officially gone live so expect a few busy weekends ahead over here at the TopSpeed office. For those who haven’t gotten their copies yet, it’s important to remember that you can buy the game in a number of bundle options, including a Limited Edition version here in the U.S. that adds a metal case, several Group B rally cars, a couple of unlocked prototype cars, and 1 million credits. That’s a pretty nice offer, but it’s nothing compared to the Gran Turismo Sport Super Bundle that’s being offered in Taiwan. That package not only comes with a Sony Bravia 4K HDR OLED TV and an assortment of other goodies, it also comes with a special edition Mazda MX-5 Miata that’s all dressed up in a Soul Red paint finish.

That’s right. An actual MX-5 is included in the Super Bundle. It’s not exactly as insane as the Grid 2: Mono Edition that came with a BAC Mono dressed in a GRID 2 livery, but it’s certainly a big step up from the 1:43 scale Nissan GT-R Spec V that Gran Turismo 5 came in a few years ago. Should any of our friends in Taiwan avail of this bundle, they also stand to get a PlayStation 4 Pro, Playstation VR, a year of the PlayStation Plus online multiplayer service, a Thrustmaster T-GT steering wheel controller, and an Apiga AP1 racing seat just in case your couch doesn’t feel real enough. The downside to getting that treasure chest’s worth of goodies is that the Super Bundle doesn’t come cheap. The cost of one is just under $1.4 million NTD, which converts to around $46,000. Still interested?

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

Is the Gran Turismo Sport Super Bundle a good buy?


Care to get a Mazda MX-5 to go with Your Copy of Gran Turismo Sport? - image 739262
“The cost of one is just under $1.4 million NTD, which converts to around $46,000”

I guess it depends on who you ask. If money’s not a problem, then it’s something that’s worth buying, if only for the fact that you’ll be able to say that you did. Unfortunately for us here in the U.S., the Super Bundle is not available in this market though that doesn’t mean that there’s no chance to actually get one. You just have to be creative in doing it.

See, all the items included in the bundle are available in the US individually. Piece them all together, and you get a cost estimate of something like this:

Item Price ($)
Sony PlayStation 4 Pro $399.99
Playstation VR $299.99
Sony Bravia 65-inch 4K HDR OLED TV $3,999.99
Thrustmaster T-GT steering wheel controller $149.99
Apiga AP1 racing seat $389.99
Mazda MX-5 Miata (M/T) with Soul Red paint finish $26,090

Care to get a Mazda MX-5 to go with Your Copy of Gran Turismo Sport? - image 739263

Do the math on those prices, and you’re looking at a total price of about $31,330. That’s about $14,700 less than what our Taiwanese friends will have to pay to buy the Super Bundle. I don’t know about any of you guys, but that’s what I call a better deal.

Whatever bundle you get, Gran Turismo Sport should be packed with excitement

Ultimately, it really doesn’t matter what bundle you get as long as you get Gran Turismo Sport. I understand the temptation of taking home an MX-5, but the game itself is the highlight here. The game itself is packed to the brim with cars (over 700 of ‘em!), race tracks, city circuits, and the best and newest in car racing video game technology.

Don’t miss out on the game because it’s already shaping up to be one of the best ones in the franchise’s long and rich history.

And again, if any of our friends in Taiwan get the Super Bundle, please let us know about it!

References

Mazda MX-5


2016 Mazda MX-5 - image 614586

Read our full review on the 2017 Mazda MX-5.


Finally! Gran Turismo Sport is Upon Us: Videos, Car Lists, and More!! - image 738663

Read more Gran Turismo Sport news.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda Releases “Decision Tree” For Miata Owners Asked To Lend Their Car

We’ve all been there. Maybe it’s a buddy whose daily is in the shop for repairs. Maybe it’s a younger sibling who wants to impress a member of the opposite sex. Maybe it’s a significant other who just wants to see what the fuss is all about. Whoever happens to be asking it, it’s a question that can send a cold chill down the spine of any and all automotive enthusiasts: “Can I borrow your car?” Normal folks won’t get it, but if you frequent this website, you’ll understand. This shouldn’t be some off-hand, casual request, like asking for a stick of butter or to borrow your neighbor’s lawn mower. This is your car, the four-wheeled light of your life, the thing you daydream about, the hobby that eats up all your spare time and money, the machine that speaks to you in a language of squealing tires and popping upshifts. Luckily, Mazda gets it, as evidenced by this handy flowchart. Designed as a handy reference guide for Miata owners, we’d argue it’s applicable for anyone wise enough not to denigrate their ride by seeing it as merely some sort of transportation appliance.

Of course, we wanna know – would you be comfortable loaning your car out? Under what conditions would you be willing to give up the keys? What car-lending fails (or wins) have you experienced in the past? Let us know in the comments!

Mazda MX-5 – decision tree


Mazda Releases “Decision Tree” For Miata Owners Asked To Lend Their Car - image 738537

References

Mazda MX-5


2016 Mazda MX-5 - image 614586

Read our full review on the 2017 Mazda MX-5.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda at Tokyo Motor Show 2017 – Two Important Concepts

Mazda revealed the highlights of their lineup for the Tokyo Motor Show 2017, the home event where they usually outline the company’s strategy for the year ahead. And that’s what they are doing this year, with two concept cars which preview the next generation of products by Mazda and give us a taste of a new design language they are adapting. 

That doesn’t mean the age of KODO is over and we will be treated to a new look from Mazda. Rather, the new design language is an evolution of KODO, one that is on the line with the company’s new theme “Celebrate Driving.” The design concept “will define the next generation of Mazda design, resulting in a more profound expression” of the current design. That should mean more sculpted parts and sharp angels, but the preview images show a more discreet look with lots of smooth surfaces.

The second of the two concepts is what they refer to at this stage as the “product concept” and it’s a compact hatchback that shows off the new technologies we will be seeing in upcoming production models. It heralds a new generation of SKYACTIV-Vehicle Architecture, next-generation technologies that apply a human-centered design philosophy for optimal functionality, and is powered by the SKYACTIV-X which uses compression ignition technology.

Tokyo Motor Show 2017 also marks the launch of Mazda CX-8 in Japan and the debut of a special edition Mazda Roadster (MX-5) Red Top featuring a dark cherry red canopy and auburn Nappa leather upholstery. That is something to look forward to.



“In August, we announced our Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030 long-term vision for technology development, setting out how Mazda hopes to use driving pleasure, the fundamental appeal of the automobile, to help solve issues facing people, the earth and society. The vision commits Mazda to make substantive cuts in CO2 emissions, and we believe the best way to achieve this is to reduce emissions under real-world conditions while offering a mix of combustion engines and electrification technologies in consideration of each region’s energy situation and energy mix,” said Masamichi Kogai, Mazda’s Representative Director, President and CEO. “Our stand this year marks the beginning of a new era for Mazda. We will showcase a concept model with the design and technologies that will define a whole new generation of Mazda cars. Among them is SKYACTIV-X, a gasoline engine that realizes a long-held dream of the global automotive industry.”

The post Mazda at Tokyo Motor Show 2017 – Two Important Concepts appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda 767B

The Mazda 767 was developed for the 1986 season…

Mazda definitely lives up to the whole “zoom-zoom” branding thing its got going for it. With a variety of sports cars to its name, including the indispensable MX-5, plus a solid dose of fun instilled in just about every model it produces, this is the go-to manufacturer if you’re looking for an enjoyable experience behind the wheel. Per tradition, much of that driving engagement can be traced back to competition on the track, a place where Mazda boasts a long resume of experience and success. Looking over the list of Mazda’s accomplishments, one of the most impressive bullet points is an outright win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, something no other Japanese manufacturer can claim. Clinching that victory was the 787B, the culmination of years of trial and error. Featured here is the preceding 767B, one of the most important components to the development of Mazda’s Le Mans-winning 787. As an advanced prototype racer, the 767B was designed for competition in the IMSA-spec GTP class, where it saw a good deal of success.

Introduced in 1988 by Mazdaspeed, the Japanese manufacturer’s performance division, the 767B replaced the outgoing 757 prototype racer, another GTP-class 24 Hours of Le Mans competitor. Not only does this otherworldly speed wedge look the part of a top-notch competitor, but with an innovative four-rotor engine providing motivation, it was also one of the best-sounding race cars ever made. If you love triangle-shaped engines, this is one of the all-time superstars.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mazda 767B.

History And Background


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727904

Mazda and the rotary engine go way, way back, all the way to the late ‘60s with the original Mazda Cosmo. Introduced at the height of the space race, the Cosmo mated out-there styling with a strange new engine designed by the German engineer Felix Wankel. For good or ill, Mazda has championed the powerplant configuration ever since.

By 1970, Mazda was getting serious about taking the rotary racing, offering up the 10A R2 powerplant in the British-built Chevron B16. By the time ‘80s rolled around, Mazda had recruited the talents of English designer Nigel Stroud, who worked with Mazdaspeed to create the Mazda 757 for competition in the 1986 season of the IMSA race series. Two years later, Mazda replaced the 757 with the 767, upping the ante with a new engine and a whole lot more power.


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727923
“In 1988, Mazda replaced the 757 with the 767, upping the ante with a new engine and a whole lot more power.”

The 767’s first outing was at the Suzuka 500 KM race in April of 1988. Only one of the two 767’s entered managed to finish, although the racer that remained ended up with a seventh-place finish overall. Following the Suzuka race, the 767’s went to the Silverstone World Championship, managing a first-place finish in the GTP class and a 9th-place finish overall.

Later that year, the 767’s went to the 24 Hours of Le Mans to complete alongside an older 757. Unfortunately, both finished towards the back with a 17th and 19th overall, even failing to overcome the older 757, which managed a 15th overall.


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727913
“Heading into the 1989 season, Mazda equipped the 767 with a new side exhaust and addressed the car’s reliability issues, and thus, the 767B was born.”

Heading into the 1989 season, Mazda equipped the 767 with a new side exhaust and addressed the car’s reliability issues, and thus, the 767B was born. Results for the Japanese automaker started to improve, including GTP-class wins at a variety of races. First tested in the IMSA 24 Hours of Daytona, the 767B finished 5th overall. Mazda once again went to the 24 Hours of Le Mans that year, this time with a duo of 767B’s and a first-gen 767. The 767B’s managed 7th and 9th overall, while the 767 got 12th overall. Mazda followed it up with a 12th-place finish overall in the All Japan Sports Prototype Championship.

In 1990, Mazda created the 767’s replacement, the 787. After a bit of teething issues, the 787 finally managed an outright win at Le Mans in 1991. The 787 was followed by the MXR-01 in the early ‘90s, which became the very last Mazda in sports car racing to date.

These days, you can find the 767B racing at historic events like the Monterey Motorsports Reunion and Goodwood Festival of Speed, among other events, as well fetching upwards of seven-figures at public auction.

Exterior


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727926
“It’s purposeful yet graceful. No wonder we love Mazda’s design schemes.”

Outside, the Mazda 767B looks like a traditional race car should. It’s impossibly low, impossibly wide, and curvaceously designed. The fenders jut high over the large, deep-dish, roller-pin shaped wheels and tires, flowing back into straight side panels and an enormous rear wing. The intakes are massive, gulping in atmosphere to feed the powertrain and keep it chilly. The cockpit is a single, center-mounted bubble, while side view mirrors are mounted on tall, slender composite stalks. Glorious noises are emitted just ahead of the rear wheels from a large-mouthed side exhaust.

Further features include large aero tunnels in the side panels, a feature made possible by the inboard suspension set-up, plus a carbon fiber and Kevlar composite material for the exterior body panels.

It’s all quite functional, but at the same time, it looks fantastic. It’s purposeful yet graceful. No wonder we love Mazda’s design schemes.

Interior


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727917

Sitting inside the all-business interior, the 767B’s control scheme looks like it was plucked from a spaceship. Drivers sit on the left-hand side of the cabin in a fixed-back bucket seat made from fiberglass, while a digital readout is mounted behind a detachable three-spoke steering wheel. Gear shifts are performed via a sequential shifter placed to the right of the driver. A variety of buttons and fuses adorn the dash, while a fire suppression system is mounted to the left of the driver. Carbon fiber and bare metal pervade throughout.

Drivetrain


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727920
“At full chat, the 767B makes as much 600 horsepower, far more than the outgoing model’s paltry 450 horsepower.”

Providing the motivation in the 767B is a mid-mounted Wankel rotary engine, which was updated to offer both more output and more displacement. Dubbed the 13J, the powerplant is an evolution of the Type 13 rotary engine, with the preceding iteration being a three-rotor 13G. By comparison, the 13J is a 4-rotor design, with all four combustion chambers adding up up to about 2.6 liters of displacement. Converted into “normal” cylinder engine displacement, that comes to about 5.2-liters. Redline is set at a head-spinning 9,000 rpm.

At full chat, the 767B makes as much 600 horsepower, far more than the outgoing model’s paltry 450 horsepower. Oh what a difference that extra rotor can make. Peak power hits 8,500 rpm, while peak twist (all 390 pound-feet of it) arrives at 7,000 rpm.

Like the previous 767 model, the newer 767B uses a five-speed sequential transmission from Porsche, which was obviously modified specifically for the rotary application.

Providing the go-juice is a 26.4-gallon fuel tank, the right spec for an endurance racer.

Chassis And Handling


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727919
“The inboard springs and dampers make room for those larger aero tunnels.”

Under the sponsorship-laden composite exterior, the Mazda 767B utilizes a monocoque construction with aluminum skin over a honeycomb core. The chassis was modified over the preceding iteration to incorporate the longer, four-rotor engine.

The suspension includes double wishbones at all four corners with inboard springs and dampers, which helps make room for those larger aero tunnels and downforce-making components. Maximum weight is set at 800 kg (1,764 pounds), with ballast mounted in the right spots for optimum weight distribution.

Finally, the steering is a rack-and-pinion set-up, while Rays Volk stopper discs haul it down in the braking zones.

Prices


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727905

1989 Mazda 767B - image 727907

Only three examples of the 767B were produced in 1989. If you would like to own one, they occasionally appear in auction, with one recent example selling at the Gooding & Co. event in Amelia Island for $1.75 million.

Competition

Nissan GTP ZX-Turbo

While the 767B raged for glory, fellow Japanese manufacturer Nissan was also in the mix campaigning the ZX-Turbo in the IMSA championship. Running between 1985 and 1990, the GTP ZX-Turbo utilized a turbocharged VG30ET V-6 engine, the same powerplant Nissan equipped in the street-worthy 300ZX sports car. Nissan ended up clinching the constructor’s championship, after which the ZX-Turbo was replaced by the NPT-90.

Porsche 962

With a debut in 1984 at the 24 Hours of Daytona, the Porsche 962 was a hugely dominant force in the world of IMSA racing, clinching a staggering 21 constructor’s championships throughout its career. Power comes from a 3.0-liter Type 935 flat-six engine, and funny enough, a few road-going iterations of the racer were built in the ‘90s.

Conclusion


1989 Mazda 767B - image 727928

There’s a lot to like about this racer. Superficially, it’s a rather pretty thing to look at, and it makes an absolutely breathtaking noise when unleashed. More concretely, it represents Mazda’s unwavering commitment to making the rotary engine configuration work at the highest levels of competition. It’s because of cars like the 767B that Mazda wants to bring the Wankel powerplant back to its production lineup, and for that, we’re grateful.

  • Leave it
    • Experienced a good deal of teething issues
    • Not the car that won at Le Mans

References

Mazda 787b


1991 Mazda 787B - image 10239

Read our full review on the Mazda 787.


Petrolicious Profiles The Ferrari 250 LM: Video - image 736677

Read more race car news.


2018 Mazda CX-8 - image 731556

Read more Mazda news.

PostHeaderIcon Donut Media Takes A Hard Look At The Mazda RX-7: Video

Arguably one of Mazda’s most important models ever, the RX-7 offered a unique combination of low weight, sexy good looks, impeccable handling, and a funky engine configuration. Indeed, from anime to Hollywood movies, this superstar of the zoom zoom has cemented a bona-fide cult following for itself, and enthusiasts across the globe have been busy scooping up examples to get a taste of that Japanese-bred Wankel goodness. And just in case you’re drawing a blank on any of this, we found this seven-and-a-half minute explainer on everything you need to know about the RX-7, courtesy of our friends at Donut Media.

The video begins with a little background on the rotary engine, including the basics on how it works and where it came from. The video then dives into the model history, including the genesis of all things RX, the Mazda Cosmo Sport 110 from 1967. Other things of note include lots of the love for pop-up headlights, racing highlights, and quick scenes from an endless number of TV shows and Internet memes. All told, it’s a fun, relatively fast watch filled with info and loads of entertaining edits.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda3

The Mazda3 has been generating solid sales for the Japanese automaker ever since it was introduced in 2003, but it was the third-generation model, launched in 2013, that established the nameplate as a strong competitor in the compact market. Selling more units than ever, the third-gen car received a mild update in 2016, but Mazda is already working on the next-generation model. Not much is known about the fourth-generation version, but Mazda’s North American design director, Julien Montousse, has recently unveiled that its design will borrow styling cues from the gorgeous Mazda RX-Vision concept.

Believed to preview the next-generation Mazda RX-7, the RX-Vision concept is also expected to inspire several vehicles in the company’s lineup in the future. The Mazda3 will become the first model to make use of the concept’s sporty lines and we just created a rendering of how the hatchback model may look like. The new Mazda3 won’t see the light of day until at least 2018, but having seen the company’s evolution in recent years, it’s not too difficult to predict what the next compact will bring to the table. As a result, we also put together a speculative review to go with our new rendering. Keep reading for all the info and make sure you stay tuned for updates.

Updated 09/01/2017: The next-gen Mazda3 was caught testing for the first time and, as you can see from the stickers on the prototype, it will feature Mazda’s new Skyactiv-X engine technology!

Continue reading to learn more about the upcoming Mazda3.

PostHeaderIcon Don’t Believe the Hype – Mazda’s New SkyActiv-X Engines Aren’t Really Sparkless

Let’s look at the big picture for a moment. EVs are coming in full force, and the internal combustion engine will slowly fade away (unfortunately) with a number of nations already talking about banning new car sales on anything that’s not electric within the next 20 years. Mazda had previously said that it wasn’t jumping on the EV bandwagon and, despite its recent partnership with Toyota to develop EVs, we can now see why. See, Mazda is so sure its newly developed SkyActiv-X engine will be so efficient, that the company won’t really need a whole lineup of EVs to meet the stringent emissions and fuel economy regulations of the future. It seems pretty crazy to think about, but Mazda has managed to take the basis of diesel engine ignition and applied it to gasoline engines. Apparently, this can improve efficiency by as much as 30 percent over that of Mazda’s current engine lineup and increase overall torque delivery by anywhere between 10 and 30 percent, depending on the application.

This new engine lineup will start making its way into Mazda’s cars starting in 2019, but what vehicles will get the technology first remains to be seen. Mazda doesn’t have too many new models on the docket for 2019, with the most prominent one being the new Mazda3, so if I were a betting man, I’d put my money on seeing it in that car first, with it eventually trickling over to the Mazda6, CX-3, CX-9, and maybe even the new successor to the classic and iconic RX-7. So, between this new gasoline engine technology, and the plan to build hybrids and EVs (with gasoline-powered range extenders,) Mazda should be able to maintain a low emissions footprint for the foreseeable future without having a full lineup of EVs. It’s all part of the brand’s Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030 vision and isn’t likely to go away anytime soon.

So, what exactly can we expect from the SkyActiv-X range of engines? A lot of folks seem to think it’s a truly sparkles gasoline engine, but is that the truth? Let’s move down the page and talk a little more about it.

PostHeaderIcon New Sports Cars Could Take The Tokyo Motor Show By Storm

Just as news is coming out that nine major automakers are skipping the Frankfurt Motor Show, there appears to be growing rumblings that the Tokyo Motor Show will play to not one, not two, but three sports car debuts. It’s already been rumored that the return of the Toyota Supra will take place in Tokyo, but according to Autobild, the Supra will also be joined by the Mazda RX-9 and the Nissan 390Z.

Obviously, this is pretty big news seeing three separate automakers launch three separate performance cars. They may be different in presentation, but the fact that all three automakers – major ones at that – are going to present sports cars that could turn into rivals of the others is making the Tokyo Motor Show a must-see event. To be clear, though, neither Mazda nor Nissan have confirmed their plans for their local auto show. Likewise, we’ve heard very little about the RX-9 at this point and even less about the Nissan 390Z. If these two cars do show up in Tokyo, it’s going to catch a lot of people off-guard. Even Toyota hasn’t confirmed its plans for Tokyo, even though all signs point to its next sports car making its world debut at the event. It might be best to taper off the excitement for the time being, or at least until we know something more concrete. That said, it is tempting to get a little excited about the possibility of three Japanese sports cars all showing up and debuting in the same event. And they said those days were gone.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Toyota Partners With Mazda to Develop EVs

Toyota and Mazda just announced a new partnership wherein the Japanese automakers will jointly develop electric vehicles. The partnership also includes a forthcoming $1.6 billion assembly plant at an as of yet unannounced location, with production scheduled to ramp up by the year 2021. The plant will create upwards of 300,000 vehicles annually and employ roughly 4,000 U.S. workers, prompting a Tweet from President Trump, who praised the announcement as a “great investment in American manufacturing.” The plant will initially build models of the Toyota Corolla and a new Mazda SUV, with the possibility for EVs sometime in the future. The partnership includes a 5 percent stake in Mazda for Toyota and a 0.25 percent stake in Toyota for Mazda, with the possibility for expansion in the future. Toyota and Mazda will also work together in developing infotainment tech and autonomous driving tech.

The partnership is framed as a major step forward for EV development for both companies. “There will be new rivals appearing – Apple, Google – these are IT companies, we also need to compete with them, too,” said Toyota President Akio Toyoda, according to Reuters. “What’s different from the past is that there are no nautical charts for us to follow. It’s without precedent,” he added with regards to EV tech and alternative vehicle power sources. Without a doubt, this new partnership marks further expansion of the EV segment as a whole and the expectation of widespread EV adoption in the near future.

Continue reading for the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda Introduces Virtual Reality Test Drives At U.K. Dealers

Mazda is giving its U.K. customers a chance to wring some zoom zoom out of the new CX-5 on the Longcross test track in Surrey, no helmets required. Sounds like a lawsuit waiting to happen, right? Not when the experience happens via virtual reality.

“With virtual reality our aim is to create a sense of oneness with the car through an immersive experience,” says Kim Crawford, Mazda U.K. Marketing Communications Manager. “You literally get a test drive experience on a track, whilst sat inside the all-new Mazda CX-5 without leaving the building.” U.K. residents are encouraged to check out the new tech at four select Mazda shopping centers, including Bullring, Birmingham, August 5th and 6th, Trafford Centre, Manchester, August 12th and 13th, Bluewater, Kent, August 19th and 20th, and Braehead, Glasgow, September 2nd and 3rd. And while the 175-horsepower SUV isn’t exactly the Japanese automaker’s most adrenaline-inducing model on offer, the virtual experience should be a big step up from the normal test drive routine on public roads. Which begs the question – how will technology change the car buying experience in general? Read on for our take.

Continue reading for the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda3

Standing out in the world of compacts is no easy feat. The corner-cutting measures it takes to offer a product at a competitive price in this segment can quickly demote a car to drab background filler. Throw in the customer’s demand to “do it all,” from sporting fun to commuting practicality, and what you’re left with can often feel like too much of a compromise. That’s not the case with the Mazda3, which combines standout styling, top-notch safety, cutting-edge interior appointment and fantastic driving dynamics into one cohesive package, all for an aggressive price. For 2016, Mazda kept all those characteristics, but upped the ante with a variety of new features, both standard and optional.

Mazda3 was originally introduced in 2003 as a replacement for the Protégé, with a second generation unveiled five years later. Now in its third generation, the 3 continues to be one of the best compact cars on the market. With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that Automotive News reports annual U.S. sales of the Mazda3 have overtaken gains in the compact market as a whole, with growth of 5.2 percent compared to a 3.1 percent average for all other segment models. So then – what makes it so good?

Updated 08/02/2017: Mazda just released info on the 2018 model year Mazda3. Check it out below!

Continue reading to learn more about the Mazda3.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda CX-8

In a world where SUVs have pretty much taken over the automotive market, Mazda is actually coming up quite short in its offerings, with its current lineup consisting of no more than the CX-3, CX-5, and CX-9. Over in the brand’s home market, Japan, things are even thinner with just the CX-3 and CX-5 making up Mazda’s entire SUV lineup. All that is about to change in the near future, however, as Mazda has just announced a new SUV. It will be called the CX-8 and is apparently designed with the Japanese market in mind. Details are pretty scant as of this writing, but it will be just a tad bit smaller than the CX-9 we know here in the U.S. and is said to be powered by a 2.2-liter diesel that’s paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. It will offer three rows of seating and, depending on configuration, will offer seating for six or seven people.

For now, Mazda has released just one image of the interior and has decided to keep exterior design filed away in its top-secret database. But, given the nature of Mazda design, you can rest assured that the exterior will likely mimic that of the CX-5 and CX-9 with a few little changes here and there to make it stand out from the rest of the models in the lineup. For now, there’s no word on whether or not it will come to the U.S., but given every other automaker’s attempt to offer as many SUVs as possible, it’s not outside the spectrum of potential possibility. With that said, we’ve decided to speculate a little more about this upcoming model, and what it might bring to the table.

Update 7/25/2017: Mazda has released a single image of the new CX-8 prior to its debut. Check out the special update section below to learn all about it.

PostHeaderIcon New Rumors Point To 2019 Release Of Mazda RX-9, Tokyo Motor Show Debut

When you get right down to it, Mazda’s lineup is just begging for a new RX. Never mind the demands from the fan boys – here we have an automaker that infuses each and every model its got with a little “zoom-zoom” magic, from its sedans to its SUVs. At the moment, the sportiest Mazda on the market is the MX-5, one of the most epic compact drop-tops that money can buy. But in an age of four-figure hypercars, the 155-horse MX-5 can’t always cut the mustard, no matter how well it handles. What Mazda needs now is something bigger, faster, and more powerful, a coupe with the soul of the Miata, but the beating heart of a high-end performance machine. Something like, I dunno, a new RX? Welp, rumor has it that’s exactly what we might get in October at the Tokyo Motor Show, with an on-sale date sometime in 2019.

That’s the news from our friends over at Motor 1, who cite “several Web sites in Asia” claiming Mazda might introduce a new generation of its rotary sports car this year. Of course, Motor 1 is quick to point out that the rumors are flimsy at best, and to take them with an appropriately sized grain of salt. But hey, hope springs eternal, especially amongst RX fans, so read on for some of the juicy details.

Continue reading for the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda MX-5 RF – Transfagarasan Experience

Transfagarasan – one of the most beautiful mountain passes in the world. It’s rated as one of the best road trip by Top Gear and was recently featured in a Lamborghini commercial. Now, Mazda has gotten in on the action by showcasing the Mazda MX-5 RF on the famous road. This video only runs about 2.5 minutes, which means you actually get to see very little of the 56-mile mountain pass, but it’s still a sight to see, whether you’re a fan of the MX-5 or the gorgeous scenery afforded by these grand mountains in Romania.

Unfortunately, we don’t get to see the MX-5 actually put in work. For the most part, it is driving slow and creeping along as most people usually do. Most of me just wants to scream “punch it” already. I mean, after all, this would be a fun road to go all fast and furious on, don’t you think? Maybe do a little drifting? Well, at least when the road is empty like in the video. Anyway, keep reading to learn a little more about the road and check out Mazda’s latest video.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda MX-5 “Ultimate MX-5” by Long Road Racing

Suppose you have a 2016 or 2017 Mazda MX-5, and for whatever reason, you’re not feeling that it’s given you your money’s worth. Do you stick with it and appreciate it for what it is? Do you try to sell it and be done with it? Or do you look for an aftermarket tuner that can give you the MX-5 of your dreams? Three doors. Three different options. One choice. No one’s going to begrudge you if you pick either of the first two options, but before you decide on those two doors, MX-5 tuner extraordinaire Long Road Racing has an offer that could help you change your mind.

The tuner calls it the “Ultimate MX-5,” and as the name obviously implies, it’s a program that features a wealth of upgrades on just about every corner of the roadster. It’s too early to say if this is the most comprehensive aftermarket kit for the Mazda sports car, but let’s just say the list of upgrades it’s offering runs long and complicated. Then again, “long and complicated” are small prices to pay if your MX-5 is going to end up as a car that can reach its full potential as a bonafide performance beast. Remember, there’s a lot more to the Mazda MX-5 than meets the eye. The key in this sense is to find the right people to help you unlock the car’s unbridled capabilities, and as far as its offerings are concerned, that might just very well be Long Road Racing.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Mazda MX-5 by BBR Motorsport

The Mazda MX-5 Miata is considered one of the most popular sports cars in the business, regardless of segment. The Miata’s popularity has lasted for almost three decades and the recent release of the fourth-generation MX-5 shows that its status in the business is showing no signs of abating. In fact, the MX-5 is so popular that British tuner BBR has made a good business out of developing and building aftermarket programs for the Japanese sports car since its inception in 1989. Fast forward to 2017 and BBR is at it again with a new kit for the MX-5 that helps the roadster attain power levels in the neighborhood of 248 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque.

Before those figures get lost in the scope of BBR’s tuning kit, consider that the tuner actually presented a similar program for the MX-5 not too long ago. Yep, back in September 2016, the British tuner unveiled two programs for the roadster: the Super 200 and the Super 200+. That “+” meant it peaked with an output of 214 ponies and 183 pound-feet of twist. It certainly didn’t take BBR long to outdo what it did only seven months ago, but the best thing about this new kit is that it may not be the last one that BBR has up its sleeve as far as the MX-5 Miata is concerned. This program does, after all, come with a “Stage 1” level so expect higher stages to come in the coming months.


PostHeaderIcon Here’s How the Mazda Miata’s Retractable Hardtop Works

So the Mazda MX-5 Miata RF is here – hallelujah! This is the hard-top model Miata loyalists have been wanting for four generations now. The RF, or Retractable Fastback, combines the closed-roof quietness and all-year functionality mixed directly with an open-air driving experience on warmer days. But how did Mazda squeeze a folding hard-top into the impossibly small Miata?

The answer: very smartly. In fact, the mechanical bits and electric motors that operate the top, along with the actual aluminum top section and rear glass, all fold neatly into the space already reserved for the conventional soft top. That’s impressive.

What’s more, the Miata RF only compromises 0.1 cubic feet of trunk space over the soft-top model. And no, your luggage runs zero risk of getting smashed by the retracting mechanicals. The trunk is completely separate from the top’s storage compartment. Of course, don’t expect to haul home a bulk purchase of mega-roll toilet paper; the trunk only has 4.6 cubic feet of space.

Operating the top only takes about 13 seconds. A dash-mounted toggle switch does the deed. The car just has to be rolling below six mph. Want to see it in action? Keep reading for the full step-by-step process.

Continue reading for a video of the Miata RF’s Targa top.


PostHeaderIcon Buyer's Guide: Mazda 3 vs Honda Civic Hatchback

SUVs have the world by storm, getting a second wind after the high-priced fuel crisis of years past, and ultimately forcing automakers to rethink their whole strategy. But, SUVS aren’t the only popular models on the market, as hatchbacks are still a big-ticket item as well. There are so many to choose from – models like the Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus, and even the Mini Cooper have found their way into the hearts of many, but there are two other players in this game that are worth your consideration, and those are the Honda Civic Hatchback and the Mazda3. Both offer aggressive styling, decent power output, and the ability to haul a decent amount of cargo or a few friends with ease.

The Honda Civic has been around for a long time, being introduced back in 1972. It was originally offered in a number of configurations, including three- and five-door hatchback form. The Civic itself has survived well over the years with the tenth-gen model being introduced for 2016. The Mazda3, on the other hand, is relatively a baby in comparison, being introduced just back in 2003. It saw its third generational shift for the 2014 model year and went through a minor revision for the 2017 model year. With Mazda’s latest design language and range of SkyActiv engines, the Mazda 3 is always ready to do battle with the other great hatchbacks in the world, but today we’re going to compare it directly to the Civic Hatchback and help you decide which one you should buy when it comes time to pull the trigger on your next big purchase.

With that said, let’s dive on in and take a good look at each one. Both come to the party with a lot to offer, so we’ve got our work cut out for us. Join me down the page, and we’ll get started.


PostHeaderIcon Mazda MX-5 RF Custom Style

The Mazda MX-5 Miata has earned its place in automotive history as arguably the most successful compact sports car in the industry. It’s never had insane amounts of power, but its combination of size, performance, and versatility has turned into an all-time great. The model is over 25 years old and has seen four generations worth of changes; that longevity is another one of its most notable claims to fame. This year though, Mazda did something to the MX-5 that it hasn’t done in the model’s long and proud history. It reconfigured the sports car with a targa roof, christening it as the MX-5 Miata RF, and giving it an extra jolt life that it probably didn’t need on its way to becoming an all-timer. Not content with just introducing the MX-5 RF, Mazda is taking it to another level with the introduction of a special edition version of the Miata RF, called the RF Custom Style.

Scheduled to make its debut at the 2017 Tokyo Auto Salon in early Januaryk, the MX-5 RF Custom Style is the first special edition treatment given to the new Miata variant. We all know that Mazda’s not bashful about giving the MX-5 special edition varieties – the just-announced MX-5 Arctic Edition is proof of that – so it’s not a surprise that it’s giving some of that love to the MX-5 RF.

In true Mazda fashion, the exclusive features of the Miara RF Custom Style aren’t just cosmetic by nature. It’s not just about making the car look racier than it already is. It’s about enhancing the performance credentials of the rear-wheel-drive, compact sports roadster and make it even more hellacious to drive on the track. It’s true that the RF variant of the Miata is heavier than the standard version on account of the retractable roof panel and the lift-up flying buttresses. Mazda didn’t specifically mention it, but there’s a good chance that added aerodynamic components on the RF Custom Style is Mazda’s way of addressing the extra weight and improve the car’s performance to “standard” Miata levels.

There’s no way of confirming that at this point because the automaker did not release the performance figures of the MX-5 RF Custom Style. The puzzle pieces fit though and in the absence of anything concrete, it’s worth establishing that there’s really more to the MX-5 Miata RF Custom Style than meets the (naked) eye.

The numbers should be impressive, but there is a always a downside when it comes to special edition MX-5s. More often than not, they don’t make their way to the US market and unless Mazda specifically says otherwise, don’t expect the MX-5 Miata RF Custom Style to find its way here too.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Mazda MX-5 Miata Custom RF Style.


PostHeaderIcon Mazda MX-5 Arctic Edition

Special edition versions of the Mazda MX-5 Miata aren’t exactly a rare breed. In the sports coupe’s life span, we’ve seen one unique iteration after another, each more unique than the other. The current-generation MX-5 isn’t immune to this lavish treatment as Mazda has prepared SE versions like the Recaro Limited Edition, the Icon Special Edition, and the just-announced Arctic Edition. Each one of them had one thing in common: they were all MX-5 Miatas at heart.

The MX-5 Miata Arctic Edition follows in a long line of special edition Miatas. It’s got a special body color that matches the mood of the season it’s celebrating. It also has complementary trim accents and an interior that’s dressed to the nines. And let’s not forget about the cool name. “Arctic Edition” looks and sounds like a boss, which is probably why Mazda decided to use it again after first bestowing the name to, you guessed it, the MX-5 Miata 12 years ago.

The automaker has scheduled a February 2017 release for the special edition model, with only 400 units set to be made available. It’s not a big number by any means, but it suits the Arctic Edition well because all 400 units are likely to be scooped up faster than it takes Santa to make his own snow angel.

The only downside to all of this is that the Arctic Edition will be exclusively sold in the U.K. market, which means us folks here across the Atlantic are once again out of luck.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Mazda MX-5 Miata Arctic Edition.


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