The new platform will obviously be more rigid and the displayed chassis holds a nice clue to that - notice the backbone element running from the front to the rear of the vehicle.
This is not the only elements that puts the Mazda MX-5 on par with much more advanced machines, such as the Mercedes SLS AMG. More importantly, the longitudinally-mounted engine sits extremely low over the front axle. Just as impressive is the way they’ve placed the engine in a perfect front-mid position. Since we're here, we'll also mention the use of an electric power steering.
While the lowering of the engine brings the center of gravity lower, the mid-positioning means the MX-5 will know no understeer. Then again, the Mazda6 and Mazda3, which are front-wheel driven, already keep this in check pretty well.
All that remains to be seen is how they’ll tweak the suspension bits you see here and we’re hoping for a setup that allows for some tail happy moments - as you can see in the image there are quite a few cast aluminum parts used to keep the weight in check.
Mazda’s Skyactiv platform will also be used by the 2015 Miata’s nonidentical twin. This will be released by a Fiat Group brand and while Alfa Romeo was the most likely company in the past, Abarth is now the expected badge.
Nonetheless, each car will have its own engines and for the 2015 Miata, the game will start with an updated version of Mazda’s 1.5-liter petrol unit - note that the carmaker’s current Skyactiv-G petrol engine range currently only includes naturally-aspirated units. At the other end of the scale, we should find a tweaked incarnation of Mazda’s 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.
Literally on top of this tech package, the MX-5 will probably feature a cloth roof, as the solution is lighter, more compact and more affordable. Mazda could return to the current foldable metallic hardtop later on in the Miata’s lifecycle.