Next Mazda MX-5 may not be rear-wheel drive

Mazda Motor Europe chief operating officer Philip Waring
Mazda have not yet decided whether the replacement for the iconic MX-5 – due in two year time – will retain rear-wheel drive.

Mazda Motor Europe chief operating officer Philip Waring said that there were conversations currently taking place about what size and characteristics the new model would carry over.

Ditching rear-wheel drive – one of the MX-5's core attributes – would be seen by many as sacrilege. Even the very fact the firm is discussing it will worry a huge number of roadster fans.

'We are considering what the options are at the moment,' said Waring. 'We all love the MX-5, but we need deep thought on it going forward. We almost are the entire segment. It's a great car; a popular car, but there are questions – and they are questions – as to what's right for the next generation of open top enthusiast.

'I'm certainly not talking about killing the MX-5 off, but we need to think about what size it should be and whether it retains rear wheel drive. It all needs to be considered.'

Waring explained that the next generation model would be a global sportscar, which is why the questions as to what attributes it should feature have cropped up.

He added: 'We need to go through the thought process about rear-wheel drive. It would be my argument that it has to have it, but there is the rest of the world to think about.'
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