The current generation ND Mazda MX-5 has been around since 2015, which means the next generation model is likely due in two years time. While Mazda has been keeping the development of its next-gen lightweight roadster under tight wraps, here’s a neat rendering of what we could expect from the new model.
Courtesy of Japanese publication Clicccar, the realistic rendering of the 2022 Mazda MX-5 shows the next-gen model adopting an evolutionary design – which isn’t a bad idea considering how sweet the current model looks – with a sharpened front fascia and more prominent rear haunches.
Inheriting design cues from the Mazda 3, the next MX-5 is shown featuring a wider front grille, flanked by slenderer headlights for a more aggressive look. The contoured surfacing of the doors is also resemblance of the Mazda 3.
Its proportions appear to stay largely similar to the current model, albeit with larger wheels pushed out to sit flush with the bulging wheel arches.
While little information is currently available regarding the 2022 Mazda MX-5, it’s reported that Mazda R&D Senior Managing Executive Officer Ichiro Hirose said in an interview with Autocar that the new fifth generation model will remain compact with a lightweight body, and that ‘big changes’ will have to happen to ensure the MX-5’s survival in the shrinking sports car market. He hinted that ‘hybrid powertrains are a great option to meet the ever stricter emissions regulations’.
He also acknowledged the impact of hybrid systems on vehicle weight and the need to offset it by trimming weight in other components. He added: “we will consider the best powertrain to keep it lighter and we will consider a variety of options as conditions and preferences diversify”.
It’s likely that Hirose was referring to Mazda’s new 2.0-liter four-cylinder SkyActiv-X mild hybrid powertrain, which will make its first application in the Mazda 3 next year bringing 177 horsepower (132 kilowatts) and 165 pound-feet (224 Newton-meters) of torque. Expect this powertrain to be available in the next-gen MX-5.