Mazda MX-5, 2009
The Exterior Design: A Fusion of New Mazda Elements and an Unmistakable MX-5 Look
The front grille has been enlarged and changed from an oval shape to the five-point grille that forms part of the well-known Mazda family face. Combined with tautly styled headlights and lowing fog- lamp bezels, the new grille creates a reined and athletic expression.
The five points of the grille are slightly rounded the new shape of the front bumper, with corners that extend downwards, enhances the dynamic look and improves the aerodynamics.
The rear bumper has a new design that makes the rear look wider, sportier, and more integrated into the body. The rear combination lamps inherit the traditional MX-5 elliptical motif, and protrude further outboard for greater aerodynamic efficiency.
The Roadster Coupe's more Upscale Identity
The Mazda MX-5 Roadster Coupe, which features a groundbreaking powered roof system, also incorporates several design changes that further emphasize its more upscale identity and distinguish it from the soft-top version.
* Front grille: Whereas the soft-top version has a in-type grille, the Roadster Coupe has a mesh grille that is framed by a chrome ring.
* Headlamp inner bezels: The headlamp inner bezels are painted silver on the soft-top version, but have a chrome finish on the Roadster Coupe.
* Fog-lamp inner bezels: The fog lamp inner bezels are black on the soft-top version, but are painted silver on the Roadster Coupe.
* Outer door handles: The outer door handles are body-coloured on the soft-top version, but have a chrome finish on the Roadster Coupe.
* High-mounted stop lamp: The high-mounted stop lamp has a red lens on the soft-top version, but a clear lens on the Roadster Coupe.
The New Wheel Designs
The MX-5 is available with 16-inch and 17-inch aluminium wheels. The 16-inch wheels have five sets of twin spokes for a lightweight look. The 17-inch wheels have 10 twisted spokes for a stronger impression of power and dynamism.
The Interior Design: Higher Than Ever Quality and Driver- Friendliness
The interior design delivers the Mazda MX-5's traditional combination of comfortable snugness below shoulder level and openness above shoulder level. It also reflects customer feedback in the form of enhanced quality and driver-friendly features.
The decorative surfaces on the instrument panel have been changed from glossy piano black to dark silver, which has a subtler, higher- quality look befitting a sports car. The meters have new graphics for higher legibility. The climate-control dials on the centre stack have each been given a silver-coloured ring for a higher-quality look. A protrusion has been eliminated from the outer surface of each door pocket to create more leg space. And the door and centre-console armrests have each been given a soft pad for a better feel.
Recaro seats designed exclusively for the MX-5 are available in certain regions. They are upholstered in leather and perforated Alcantara for a sporty look, and they combine excellent support with easy ingress and egress.
Evolved Jinba Ittai for Enhanced Fun-To-Drive
The Jinba Ittai feeling on which Mazda has always focused with the Mazda MX-5 defines the kind of spontaneous car-and-driver interaction that anyone can experience whether they're driving the MX-5 in town, on twisty roads, or on an open highway. With the latest facelift, Mazda engineers evolved the attributes in the "driving", "cornering", "braking", and "listening" categories in the fishbone chart to realize performance that lets drivers enjoy the feeling of oneness with the car to an even greater degree.
A 500 rpm Higher Rev Limit Maximizes Engine Potential for Greater Enjoyment
The powertrain has been enhanced to enable the driver to enjoy the full potential of the engine's performance (a key "fun to drive" aspect of the MX-5). Specifically, the speed at which the engine delivers maximum power has been raised from 6,700 rpm to 7,000 rpm (2.0-litre M/T version) and the rev limit has been raised from 7,000 rpm to 7,500 rpm (all 2.0-litre versions). Without these enhancements, the engine feels smooth and linear right up to the rev limit, even with the throttle wide open. With them, however, the driver can really experience the sensation of extracting every single horsepower out of the engine (the enhancements described here apply to the 2.0-litre grades with a manual transmission). The crucial 500 rpm increase in the rev limit is enabled by greater precision in the engine, namely: a forged crankshaft (this ensures the required rigidity at high engine speeds), fully floating pistons and newly designed valve springs.
A Sportier Engine Sound that Responds More Crisply to Accelerator Inputs
The engine sound (a key element in the "listening" category of the MX-5 fishbone chart) is a big part of the sports car experience. With the latest facelift, Mazda engineers made the Mazda MX-5 engine sound even better without causing aural discomfort for people outside the car. Notably, they increased the rigidity of the plastic surge tank in the intake manifold. The optimized surge tank combines with the new forged crankshaft to realize a clearer engine sound throughout the rev range. In vehicles with the six-speed manual transmission, the engineers also adopted a newly developed device called an Induction Sound Enhancer (ISE). This amplifies the pulses that occur when an accelerator input opens the throttle valve to increase air low into the engine, thereby delivering a more exciting sound to the cockpit. The intake sound created by the ISE feels synchronized with the driver's accelerator inputs, so the driver enjoys a crisp, thrilling engine sound even when using the accelerator pedal gently to adjust the revs for a downshift.
The Newly Evolved and Reined Transmissions
With the six-speed manual transmission, the meshing surfaces of the 1st-4th triple-cone synchronizers are now carbon coated, and the 3rd-4th synchronizer diameter has been increased. These improvements enable smoother shifts up to the engine's heightened rev limit of 7,500 rpm.
A six-speed Activematic automatic transmission that's newly available with the MX-5 for Europe incorporates two new control technologies. One is Direct Activematic (DAM), which allows the driver to quickly change gears using paddles on the steering wheel while still driving in the "D" range. It was developed to enable quick downshifts for three common situations: decelerating using engine braking on a downhill road; accelerating after decelerating into a corner; and overtaking another vehicle. (The driver does not need to select the "M" range before shifting down.) Since Direct Activematic enables engine braking and acceleration more quickly and easily, it makes driving easier and more fun. The other new technology is Active Adaptive Shift (AAS), by means of which the transmission control system evaluates the driving situation from factors such as the road's gradient and twistiness and the accelerator and brake inputs. When the system recognizes enthusiastic driving, it actively promotes upshifts and downshifts to realize a linear and sporty response that matches the driver's intentions.
An Athletic Design that Heightens Aerodynamic Performance
To improve handling stability, quietness, and high-speed fuel economy, the MX-5 development team drew on Mazda's expertise in incorporating aerodynamic improvements into styling that's faithful to a design theme. The main aerodynamic improvements are as follows:
* air guides that protrude downward from the left and right corners of the front bumper
* specification vehicles, except some specific markets)
* protruding rear combination lamps
* wider front tyre deflectors
The Quieter Ride in the Roadster Coupe
Given the Roadster Coupe's more upscale positioning, the development team produced a quieter ride by reducing wheel resonance and adding damping and sound-insulating materials, such as urethane filling in the front suspension crossmember and damping material in the front part of the roof. Thanks to these improvements, road noise in the cockpit on a coarse road surface with the roof closed is 2.1dB lower than before. Quietness is further promoted in the Roadster Coupe and soft-top version by stiffer door modules and by newly added reinforcements on the No. 2 crossmember.