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Mazda MX-5 news - Fresh light - 2008

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There’s a new Mazda MX-5 out in Japan. Well, not new exactly, but certainly substantially revised. Well, not substantially, but… OK, it’s only a bit different.

Visually, there’s a new corporate ‘five-point’ front grille, with revised rear lights and a new diffuser round the back.

If you’re really, really into your MX-5s (though if you are really, really into your MX-5s, you’ll probably insist on calling it a Miata instead), you’ll notice the new alloys and exciting new colours.

Inside (if you’ve got the roof up, that is, otherwise it’s just a slightly warmer sort of outside) there are revised gauges and new seats that’ll keep your posterior toasty warm.

But the more exciting changes are in the engine department. A new crankshaft and revised valve springs help lift the rev limit (for manual models) by 500rpm to 7500rpm. Power remains at 168bhp for Japanese versions, though it remains to be seen whether Brit-spec cars will get any extra grunt.

If you go for the six-speed auto’ gearbox (and really, why would you?) you now get steering wheel buttons for up- and downshifts. There’s also a slight drop in ride height, meaning less roll through the corners.

And, er, that’s about it. We’ll see the new MX-5 in the UK in the spring: expect prices to remain very similar to the old one.

Just one more thing, though: look at that front numberplate in the middle of the grille. Fine as it is, but imagine it with a white UK-style plate. That’s going to look like a proper buck-toothed yokel, isn’t it?

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