New Mazda MX-5 Launched in Japan

New Mazda MX-5 in Japan
New Mazda MX-5 in Japan

Mazda launched its new MX-5 car in Japan, giving some parts of its appearance a makeover and altering pieces of the powertrain, and it is set to release outside Japan sometime early next year.

The MX-5 sports the Activematic electrically-controlled transmission system and now has shifting buttons reminiscent of those in the RX-8. Mazda also adjusted the front center roll for more responsive steering and reduced body roll. The gearbox for the 6-speed manual version has been modified for precision, too. The engine features new crankshafts, pistons, and newly-designed valve springs, and is capable of 168 horsepower at 7500 rpm.

The look updates feature a restyled front with a mesh grille and chrome surrounds for the top-down version, so people will be able to differentiate between it and the hard-top. The 5-dial instrument panel has been redesigned, as well. The seats have also been given sturdier support along with new designs. There is also a nice selection of colors available for prospective buyers.

While the 2009 MX-5 is basically more of a facelift than an upgrade, buyers will be happy with the fine-tuned pieces and the higher rev limit. The MX-5 is also set to be released in Europe for the first time.