Mazda showed the new Miata’s bare chassis at the 2014 New York Auto Show, but was previously coy about when the whole car would appear. Early reports suggested an unveiling sometime next year, but this way the new car will arrive in time to celebrate the Miata’s 25th anniversary.
It’s never easy remaking a car as beloved as the Miata, but so far it looks like the new model will maintain the quintessentially Miata characteristics of lightness, simplicity, and nimbleness.
An engine from Mazda’s Skyactiv-G line of efficient gasoline motors will power the 2016 Miata, the only question is: Which one?
Either the 2.0-liter or 2.5-liter four-cylinder engines seen in several current Mazdas seems logical, but reports have also suggested a 1.5-liter four with just 99 horsepower could be offered, in Japan at least.
Meanwhile, the styling could become more expressive, adopting the familial “Kodo” look of the Mazda3, 6, and CX-5, which wouldn’t be a bad thing.
Whatever it looks like, the 2016 Miata will have to hold its own against a resurgent field of small sports cars.
The current model was the only game in town at its price point when it launched back in 2005, but now it will have to contend with the Subaru BRZ/Scion FR-S twins, and possible competitors from Chevrolet and Nissan as well.