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Mazda MX-5 Redux

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2009 Mazda MX-5

2009 Mazda MX-5

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The purveyor of zoom-zoom is taking notes from the founder of Lotus, Colin Chapman, who famously claimed that weight is the enemy of performance. Never a porky car, the MX-5Miata has nonetheless grown in size and weight as buyers and the industry have demanded more safety, more equipment, and greater performance.

But no more, according to AutoCar, who claim that Mazda program manager Takao Kijima insisted the next-gen vehicle weight less than 2,200 pounds. Today's MX-5 weighs nearly 2,500 pounds, while the original Miata tipped the scales at around 2,100 pounds.

AutoCar reports that the MX-5 will retain a front engine/rear-drive architecture, and will also stick with steel construction to keep the vehicle affordable. Another goal of the program is reduced fuel consumption and emissions, which will be made possible by downsized engines and possibly an extremely efficient turbocharged engine of around 1.4 liters.

Mazda intends to slash curb weights from its entire lineup by at least 10 percent by model year 2011.--Colin Mathews

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