All posts by mazdaclub

Mazda Might Give the MX-5 Miata 26 More Horsepower For 2019

from RoadandTrack.oom

Regulatory documents suggest the 2019 MX-5 Miata will go from 155 horsepower to 181, a huge power increase for the lightweight sports car.

The Mazda MX-5 has been widely hailed as a return to the original formula: a great-handling, lightweight car. It’s also been criticized by some for only having 155 horsepower. Mazda has repeatedly stated that it will focus on making the car faster by cutting more weight, but a new VIN filing shows that the MX-5 might also get a significant horsepower bump for the 2019 model year.

A document filed with NHTSA on February 27th shows that the MX-5 will continue to offer the trim levels we’re familiar with and a 2.0-liter engine, but the power rating has changed from 155 horsepower to 181. This would constitute a power increase of 17 percent—the biggest jump for any version of the naturally-aspirated SkyActiv-G motor.

The horsepower increase is shown on Page 3 of the document, embedded here:

Naturally, we’re a bit skeptical that such a power increase is possible: currently, the most powerful version of the 2.0L SkyActiv-G produces 162 horsepower in some overseas versions of the Mazda3; the VIN document that references the assumed Miata power increase does not list any power adders such as a turbo or supercharger. Our first thought is that the MX-5 might be getting the SkyActiv-X engine which Mazda states will make in excess of 180 horsepower in 2.0-liter form, but Mazda has said in the past that the MX-5 would not get this innovative compression-ignition gasoline engine anytime soon.

This gap in deployment of the SkyActiv-X engine might actually explain the power bump. The MX-5 will be due for a refresh soon, and engineers might be working on squeezing out a bit more power if they plan to continue using the SkyActiv-G engine. Adding 26 horsepower to that engine will be no easy task: it will likely require changes to make the motor breathe easier while staying emissions compliant. The most common aftermarket upgrades to intake, exhaust, and computer only add about 12 horsepower to the current engine. There are a few tuning packages that bump the engine over the 180 horsepower mark, but they require extensive mods including new camshafts and intake manifolds.

Mazda has done similar upgrades to previous generations of engines, like the 2.0-liter MZR of the last-generation MX-5 which debuted at 136 horsepower in some models but was tuned to go as high as 167 horsepower in others. Mazda has stated it doesn’t plan to offer a turbo version of the current car, as it would require significant weight-adding drivetrain alterations that would deviate from the current car’s lightweight formula. This might be another reason for a breathed-on version of the current engine, as the jump to 181 horsepower would likely not require upgrades to the transmission, rear differential, or wheel bearings—the weight increase would be minimal.

We asked Mazda for comment on the document but their representative stated that they could not speculate on future products. While this is a common response for products that have not yet been revealed, it gives us some hope that the number in the document is not a mistake, since it was not immediately pointed out as such.

While most of us here at R&T believe that 155 horsepower is plenty for a car as light as the MX-5, we can all appreciate that this apparent power bump would make the Miata even more fun on the road and the track.

New Turbocharged Mazda6

The Mazda6 never needed much. It looked awesome, was a lot of fun to drive and even came with a manual gearbox. It only ever really lacked one thing: power. Now the 2018 Mazda6 is here with the turbocharged 2.5-liter turbo engine from the CX-9, and it may just be the best front-drive midsize sedan on the market now.

In addition, it’s more “premium” now. That’s a buzzword that gets thrown around way too much, but Mazda’s doing this for a reason. It’s a tiny company, all things considered. It’s hard for Mazda to compete with giants like Ford and Toyota and Honda. So the answer is to go more upscale, to make cars more profitable by making them nicer and, yes, somewhat more expensive.

So the result is that the updated Mazda6—as well as the CX-9 and others—occupy a weird space between a mass-market brand and a true luxury one. But there’s nothing wrong with that, especially when the cars look great and cater to enthusiasts

Here’s what’s new. The updated 6 isn’t a new car, but a heavy update. Improvements include a retuned chassis for a better ride and less noise, vibration and harshness, more tech features and a heavily revised interior with available Nappa leather and wood accents.

Now, the real goodness is under the hood: a 2.5-liter turbo four with 250 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque from just 2,000 RPM. Those are the power figures we’ve always craved from the 6, a superb driver’s car in every aspect but its anemic engine—until now. A six-speed automatic is standard there.

The base engine is still a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four with 184 HP, and that can still be had with a manual. Sadly the more powerful turbo engine cannot. That’s a shame, because this car would be rad as hell with the beefy turbo motor and a stick. Oh well.

The 2018 Mazda6 goes on sale in spring 2018 and pricing has not been announced yet, but expect a bump over the outgoing car’s $21,495 base price.

Auto Insurance

The auto insurance industry is not easy to navigate. There are so many factors to consider when shopping for a provider that car owners often get lost in (or cheated by) the fine print.

On behalf of consumers, a team of researchers at set out to identify the auto insurance providers that rise to the top, “based on their ability to serve customers and actually pay out claims; not just on premium cost.” Take a look at their helpful guide here:

They started with 41 of the nation’s top auto insurance companies. These are the factors they considered in their comprehensive review:

  1. Financial solvency
  2. Claims processing
  3. Coverage options
    1. New car replacement
    2. GAP insurance
    3. Uninsured motorist coverages
  4. Discounts
  5. Customer support

Their guide not only provides their overall favorite auto insurance providers based on the above considerations, but also offers recommendations tailored to your personal needs – whether you’re a pet owner, veteran, on a budget, or…a classic car owner! (They recommend Grundy) Find their research process, recommendations, and purchasing tips here.

2017 Mazda CX-9

We all want a luxury SUV but the fact of the matter is, not all of us can afford one. The 2017 Mazda CX-9 however, happens to offer the very thing you want but without the expensive price tag. Of course, nothing is really perfect and some things have to be sacrificed to get what you want most. Here’s what you should know about the 2017 Mazda CX-9.

Here’s the deal, the 2017 Mazda CX-9 is built on the same Kodo “Soul of Motion” platform as its CX-3 and CX-5 siblings. This gives the 2017 Mazda CX-9 a gorgeous look starting with its open-mouthed chrome grille along with LED grille accent lighting that makes it standout during the night. In addition, it also has expensive fog lights and LED headlights that basically give the front section a seductive look. According to Forbes, the 2017 Mazda CX-9 also has a strong shoulder that extends from the front to the rear section. Simply put, the 2017 Mazda CX-9 has an elegant look that satisfies any pair of eyes that look at it.

The interior of the 2017 Mazda CX-9 is just as attractive as the exterior. The 2017 Mazda CX-9 Signature in particular has all sorts of luxurious inputs from genuine rosewood that envelope the dashboard and other finishing touches that simply make the 2017 Mazda CX-9 scream luxury. As for the control panels, Mazda has kept things rather simple, which is probably a good move because it simply makes the luxuriousness stand out more. Reading about it may not seem very impressive but sitting in the cabin tells a different story.

The power aspect of the 2017 Mazda CX-9 would probably be something you will not be very excited with. According to report, the 2017 Mazda CX-9 is equipped with a new SKYACTIV-G 2.5-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine that is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission with Sport and manual-shift modes. This engine is capable of putting out 250 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. Compared to the other SUVs in the market, there are certainly a lot with more power but you will also have to pay a higher price for them.

1990 Anitique MX-5 Miata of Paul Heaney

1990 Antique Mazda MX-5 Miata
1990 Antique Mazda MX-5 Miata

1990 Anitique Miata Paul Heaney2In 1991 I wrote to Vince Tidwell, President, Mazda Club of America to tell him about my unbelievable experience with my 1990 Mazda Miata.  My letter was printed on page 71 of the “Summer 1991” issue of MIATA MAGAZINE.  The previous fall I lost control of my Miata and slid into the remains of a stone wall causing the Miata to roll over onto its roof.  (Luckily the convertible top was up.)  My son and I were in the car and, primarily due to the solid design of the vehicle, escaped unhurt.  After the accident and all of the assorted police and emergency actions were over I enlisted the help of a few spectators to roll the car back onto its wheels.  Miraculously it started and I was able to drive it home.

As a practicing Design Engineer and Department Head at Eastman Kodak, I thought that Mazda might be interested so I send a detailed letter to Mr. Tidwell with the request that he forward a copy to the design area at Mazda.  I never heard a word from Mazda but I did receive a complementary copy of the “Summer 1991” issue of MIATA MAGAZINE that is in my hand right now.

My Miata was built in 1989 as an early model and I was told my John Love at Roger Burdick Mazda in East Rochester that this particular car had been shipped around the country to show dealers what the new Miata was like.  (I do not know if this is true but it makes a nice sales story.)

Well, my Miata turned 25 years old and I contacted a person at the New York State Dept. of Motor Vehicles to see if I could register it as a historic vehicle using New York State “HISTORIC VEHICLE” license plates that I have in my possession.  He was agreeable but said I could not register until after 1 JAN 2016.  He did say that he would hold my application if I provided all of the required documentation and a picture of the historic plates that I had.  I did this and shortly after the first of January I received my Historic Vehicle Registration.

I NOW AM DRIVING AN ANTIQUE MAZDA MIATA !!!!!  Perhaps this is the first in NYS or perhaps first in the US !!!

This January I did send a letter to Mazda North America but there was no response.

Today I found my copy of the “Summer 1991” issue of MIATA MAGAZINE and reread the printed copy of my old letter on page 71.  That prompted me to send this letter to you just FYI.  My Miata is still a great little car.  It has been remarkably reliable and still is a lot of fun to drive.  I have to say that since the day that I rolled it over I have not had any other incident where I tested the structural safety of the vehicle but I do have lots of other “fun” stories, like the time that my wife and I were driving north, with the top down, from the southern tier of NYS when the skies “Opened up with pouring rain.  Holding 60 MPH on back roads the wind kept the rain from coming in!!!  But … We came to a town with a stop light.  You can guess the rest!!!

I hope that you enjoy your Miata as much as I enjoy mine,

Paul Heaney

PS: My Daughter and Son-In-Law live in Libertyville, IL

Mazda CX-3 moves you like never before

by Adolf Kaure at

Mazda CX-3 moves you like never beforeThere’s never been an SUV that can move you like this. For the first time, new generation Mazda thinking combines with enhanced capability and a city-friendly size. This SUV comes in front with or all-wheel drive and is available at Novel Mazda in Windhoek.The Mazda CX-3 comes in 3 models namely the Neo, Maxx as well as the sTouring. The Mazda CX-3 Neo comes with 16-inch rims, Halogen headlamps, cruise control and rear parking sensors. Mazda CX-3 Maxx has a reverse camera, satellite navigation as well as leather wrapped gear shift knob and steering wheel.

The Mazda CX-3 sTouring comes in 18-inch alloy wheels with front fog lamps as well as front 2-speed wipers with a rain-sensing function. The Mazda CX-3 is available in a variety of colours. These colours include red soul, crystal pearl white, ceramic metallic, meteor grey, titanium flash, jet black, deep crystal blue and dynamic blue.

Under the hood of this SUV comes two types of engines, which are powered by lightweight SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY. Responsive power is enjoyed with exceptional fuel consumption, no matter which form you choose; be it the punchy 2.0 litre petrol or the keenly muscular 1.5 litre turbo diesel.

The 2.0 litre petrol 4 cylinder engine delivers a sporty 109 kW of power and 192 Nm of torque; using as little as 6.1 litres of every of fuel for every 100 kilometres.

As for the 1.5 litre turbo diesel 4 cylinder engine, it produces 77 kW and a muscular 270 Nm of torque, using as little as 4.8 litres of fuel for every 100 kilometres.

The SUV’s interior is easy on the eye with plenty of tech features. By putting key information such as current speed and navigation into your line of sight, Active Driving Display helps you focus on what’s ahead by minimising road distraction.

There are no complaints in terms of space as Mazda describes this vehicle as “comfortable, clever and capable with a roomy, well-crafted cabin that works with whatever you are doing”.

The rear seats split 60/40 to allow for a large oddly shaped items. Folding down both creates a large, virtually flat floored space. A handy two-way flor lets you customise carrying capacity even more. It can hide a handy extra compartment, or be lowered to expand the cargo bay. Of course your personal stuff is well looked after, with plenty of useful storage.

The Mazda CX-3’s has a style with an exterior which is stylish and stands above.
Mazda describes its interior as “something out of the ordinary”. The vehicle is a creation of KODO Soul of Motion’ design. It is has balancing athletic presence, streamlined simplicity and elegant detail and brings a rare imagination to the small SUV.

Other exterior features which this SUV comes with include; body coloured power mirrors, rear spoiler’ front LED fog lamps and LED tail-lamps. The Mazda CX-3 comes at a cost of N$ 285 000 with a 3-year unlimited warranty.

Meet the New Members

Meet the New Members

New members that have joined since the last issue.  More recent members may appear in the next issue.

Leon L Reister
Ionia, Michigan
Leon has an ‘81 RX-7.

Barbara Ballard

Venice, Florida
Barbara has a ‘95 black MX-6.

Kenichi Obara
Sendai-City, Miyagi, Japan
Kenichi has a ‘94 PT NA8.

Mark Knox
Cincinnati, Ohio

Sparkle Jones
Kentwood, Michigan


RX Vision Concept

from by Justin Cupler

When Mazda revealed its RX Vision concept, jaws across the automotive world dropped. This stunning concept embodied everything enthusiasts wanted in a new RX, sans the “concept” suffix. Recently, Mazda rightfully brought home the “Most Beautiful Concept of the Year” at the 31st Festival Automobile International for its work on this sleek, Wankel-powered rig. Though the RX was an undeniable beauty, this award was by no means automatic. It had to stand up to the likes of the Bentley EXP 10 Speed 6, the Peugeot Fractal, and Porsche Mission E—none of which were deficient in terms of sexiness. In the end, however, the RX Vision designers’ tweaks to the KODO language were enough to bag the prize.

RX Vision ConceptThe big question now is whether Mazda will actually use this design in producing a road-going RX. In recent years, Mazda has been pretty good about avoiding useless concept cars, but this one seems more of a stretch for several reasons.

The first issue is that the RX will have to come with some form of rotary engine, or fans will revolt. This requirement leads me to the next issue; the rotary, while capable of big horsepower numbers from a small displacement, has always had three flaws: fuel economy, oil consumption, and lack of low-rev torque.

Since their inception, the Rotary engines were little more than a novelty, as they allowed for a nearly limitless rev band that gave engineers more freedom to extract serious horsepower from them. Horsepower is great for bragging rights, but torque has always been one of the Wankel’s shortcomings—the RX-8’s embarrassing 152 pound-feet at 5,500 is a key example of this—and the only way Mazda saw to fix it was turbo, which compounded the oil- and fuel-consumption issues (sigh). And don’t even get me started on the apex seal issues…

According to Mazda, it is continuing to tweak the Skyactiv-R rotary in the concept to make it friendly for production. Rumors have swirled about this engine, ranging from it being a generator for an electric powertrain to it being a diesel engine. Recently, the rumormill has rested on a report that Mazda engineers want the rotary to stand alone—no electrification—and run on diesel. Instead, the last reports claim that Mazda is looking to go back to turbocharging for the new engine.

Stay tuned for details.

RX Vision Concept