With the entire automotive industry shifting towards alternative propulsion methods as a response to the tightening emissions standards worldwide, it seems that even the purest sports cars can’t escape the wrath of electrification. According to a report by Japanese outlet Kuruma News, Mazda has confirmed that the MX-5 roadster will be electrified by 2030, and it’ll most likely be a hybrid.
The news comes from a media roundtable session following the brand’s announcement of its electrification plans last week – which will see all Mazda vehicles offer some form of electrified option by the end of the decade.
Mazda R&D and Cost Innovation Supervisor, Takeji Kojima said during the session that the MX-5 roadster is included in the “scope of electrification in 2030”, and while he did not expand further on the form of electrification, Kojima says that Mazda wants to retain the values and DNA of the MX-5 as a lightweight sports car, despite electrification.
That statement strongly suggests that the upcoming electrified Mazda MX-5 will carry a hybrid powertrain, rather than a significantly heavier fully-electric one. Although, there are no indications on whether it’ll be the 24V/48V mild hybrid set-up, or a more powerful series-hybrid or plug-in hybrid powertrain.
In addition to electrification, Mazda R&D executive Takeji Kojima also brought up the use of biofuel, such as e-fuel, in internal combustion engines as part of Mazda’s plans to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.
Not much else has been said about the upcoming Mazda MX-5, which should be making its global debut sometime between 2022 and 2025, judging by a standard eight to 10 year lifecycle for the model. The ‘ND’ MX-5 was unveiled globally in 2014, featuring a 2.0-litre naturally-aspirated inline-four engine that pushes 184 hp and 205 Nm to the rear wheels.
While Mazda may not be considering a fully-electric MX-5 for now, it seems like a proper EV MX-5 will soon become an inevitable fact, no thanks to the ever-tightening emissions regulations and market restrictions all over the world over the next decade. At least, we do know that Mazda still has plans for its combustion engines, at least for the next 10 years.