Motoring / Motoring News

Charl Bosch
Online Motoring Reporter
2 minute read
26 Oct 2021
8:52 am

Mild-hybrid future again mentioned for next Mazda MX-5

Charl Bosch

Electrified powerunit could result in the incoming NE becoming the most powerful MX-5 ever made.

The current ND generation MX-5 is expected to last until at least 2024.

A new report from the United Kingdom has hinted that the next generation MX-5 will remain true to its roots by eschewing complete electric propulsion for internal combustion motivation, albeit with hybrid assistance.

In an apparent confirmation of comments made back in May by Hiroshioma’s R&D Managing Executive Officer, Takeji Kojima, Autocar claims the all-new MX-5, set to be carry the NE internal moniker, could potentially use the compression ignition SkyActiv-X engine rather than an all-electric setup in order to avoid the added weight brought on by the battery pack.

Despite Kojima confirming an all-electric MX-5 by 2030, the report claims the SkyActiv-X system will allow Mazda to continue with internal combustion engines for a while longer given the MX-5’s low offset that is unlikely to impact the brand’s corporate average emissions under the looming Euro 7 requirements.

ALSO READ: Mild-hybrid rather than full electric for next Mazda MX-5

In addition, the SkyActiv-X has been developed to function without a turbocharger, another factor that could prove crucial for the MX-5 that has gone without forced assistance in markets outside Japan since the original NA debuted in 1989, though it does feature mild-hybrid assistance in a form of a 48-volt belt-starter/generator.

Reportedly on course to debut in 2024 or 2025, at which point the current ND would be ten years old, the inclusion of SkyActiv-X could also result in the NE being the most powerful MX-5 ever made as it has the potential to up power by a claimed 30% over the current 2.0 SkyActiv-G.

It would therefore result in a 0-100 km/h time, according to Autocar, of below six seconds and outputs well up on the 135kW/205Nm made by the ND. While the entry-level 1.5-litre engine looks set to fall by the wayside, the manual gearbox will be retained along with an automatic.

For now, little else is known about the newcomer, though the report states it will feature a completely new and more modern interior, as well as styling from the Vision Coupe Concept that debuted in Tokyo four years ago.