Fiat and Mazda Team Up for New Roadster

Mazda MX-5 Spyder Concept

Fiat, the parent company of Chrysler, announced an alliance with Mazda to develop a rear-wheel-drive roadster, according to the Detroit News. The car is expected to be based on Mazda's MX-5 Miata and will be sold under the Mazda and Alfa Romeo brands.

The non-binding memorandum of understanding between the two carmakers, which was announced today, comes after Mazda's partnership with Ford fell apart. Mazda has been in the red the past four years, and earlier this year, the company said it was looking for an alliance partner to share development costs. Meanwhile, Fiat, along with other European carmakers, has been scrambling to cut costs and find partnerships as Europe's economy struggles.

"By partnering with Mazda, we will be cooperating with the recognized leader in compact rear-drive vehicle architectures in order to deliver an exciting and stylish roadster in the Alfa Romeo tradition," Chrysler and Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said in a statement. "We are appreciative of this collaboration with Mazda and look forward to maintaining a fruitful and continuous relationship."

At the SEMA show in November, Mazda showed off a Spyder concept of the MX-5 Miata (pictured above) and said some elements may be used in future production cars.

Final agreement is expected to be signed later this year, and production of the car is expected to start in Japan in 2015.

Fiat Announces Alliance With Mazda (Detroit News)

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By Dave Lee | May 23, 2012 | Comments (0)

Mazda To Show MX-5 Miata Special Edition at Chicago Auto Show

2012 MX-5 Crystal White (front 3-4)
Chicago holds a special place in Mazda's heart where the MX-5 Miata is concerned. The automaker unveiled its first version of the popular roadster at the show in 1989. This year, Mazda is using the 2012 Chicago Auto Show to debut a special-edition version of the compact droptop.

More 2012 Chicago Auto Show Coverage

The limited-production 2012 MX-5 Miata Special Edition will feature a black-only power-retractable hard top, a first for Mazda's convertible. So far, only a body-colored top has been offered. Other specific features include 18-inch black-gunmetal alloy wheels, black exterior accents, heated seats in black leather and piano-black interior trim. 

By Jennifer Geiger | February 6, 2012 | Comments (1)

Mazda MX-5 Spyder Concept: SEMA Photo Gallery

Mazda MX-5 Spyder Concept
Mazda rolled out a Spyder version of its iconic MX-5 Miata at SEMA, and while it’s clear that this is only a concept, Mazda says some elements may be used in future production cars. 

The idea behind this Spyder is to turn a Miata into a lightweight racer that you can drive to the track on a sustainable fuel.   

In the front, you immediately notice the Mazda “smile” is a little different. A black bar across the top of the grille disrupts the regular “smiley” face you get on the production version. Two aero humps adorn the rear of the car, nearly identical to the Porsche Boxster Spyder.

By Patrick Olsen | November 2, 2011 | Comments (5)

Cars.com Reviews the 2010 Mazda MX-5 Miata

2010 Mazda MX-5 Miata
The Mazda MX-5 Miata has been a top-selling roadster in America for nearly two decades now. The reason for that isn't just because of the Miata’s apparent lack of competitors — the Miata feels just right doing what it was intended to do, according to Cars.com editor Mike Hanley. The Miata has sharp and connected steering and shifting feel, and it likes to be flung in corners. Continue reading to see how this little Mazda can make even the most mundane of trips exhilarating.

2010 Mazda MX-5 Miata Review 

2010|Mazda|MX-5 Miata

By Colin Bird | October 25, 2010 | Comments (4)

Affordable Convertibles Put to the Test

Some highly anticipated new luxury convertibles will hit the market this summer in the Lexus IS and Infiniti G37, but what about droptops for the masses? Isn’t everyone entitled to some wind in their hair?

With the sun shining and the breeze cool, we took three popular, affordable convertibles out for a spin to see how they’d fare as a chariot for a weekend getaway. The cars tested were the 2009 Mazda MX-5 Miata, 2010 Ford Mustang and 2009 Volkswagen Beetle convertible. We considered cargo space, comfort and cool factor. Check out the video above to see how they fared in those categories, and read on to see how we felt about these topless wonders as driving machines.

In the end, our five staffers arrived at a split decision, but not before some heavily spirited debate. What follows is the conversation that ensued after a day of driving the three vehicles over a large chunk of northern Illinois:

By Stephen Markley | July 8, 2009 | Comments (17)

Cars.com Reviews the 2009 Mazda MX-5 Miata

09Miata Do you like fun? Do you enjoy enjoying things? If so, Cars.com reviewer Joe Wiesenfelder has the car for you. The Mazda MX-5 Miata pretty much gives Wiesenfelder a reason to get out of bed in the morning, and he makes no bones about the fact that it’s one of his favorites. Check out his full review to find out why the Miata puts such a smile on his face.

2009 Mazda MX-5 Miata Review

2009|Mazda|Miata MX-5

By Stephen Markley | June 30, 2009 | Comments (1)

2009 Mazda MX-5 Miata Video

Cars.com reviewer Joe Wiesenfelder steps into one of his favorites, the Mazda MX-5 Miata. In this case, Wiesenfelder’s gotten his hands on a top-of-the-line model with a retractable hardtop and the company's new smiling grille. Beyond those perks and drawbacks, he explains just why the MX-5 Miata is so fun to drive. Watch the video to see if you too could become a fan.

2009|Mazda|MX-5

By Stephen Markley | June 22, 2009 | Comments (1)

Through Ian's Lens: 2009 Mazda MX-5 Miata

Miata500

As roadsters go, there are very few cars in the current market that make my head spin. I could whittle that list down to two vehicles in particular, and when I get my hands on a 2010 BMW Z4, it will also grace the pages of Through Ian’s Lens. But until then, I will be quite happy with the new 2009 Mazda MX-5 Miata.

Cat-like headlights, pronounced fenders and Mazda's new smiling grille are the first things that catch my attention on the MX-5. From there, the stamped hood, trunklid curve and new taillights give this traditional-looking MX-5 Miata a modern upgrade. The best thing about this roadster? The designers over at Mazda created a great-looking car even with the top up — a rarity in modern roadsters.

Let me know what you think in the comments section below. As always, feel free to use the full-screen mode on the photo browser.

By Ian Merritt | June 17, 2009 | Comments (4)

2009 Mazda MX-5 Miata Video

The Mazda MX-5 Miata made its debut at the Chicago auto show 20 years ago. For this special anniversary, the redesigned 2009 Miata gets a thorough look from Cars.com’s Joe Wiesenfelder. He scrutinizes everything from the so-called “smiley” grille to the interior seating and explains why he thinks the Miata might still have a decent shot at being a Recession-era winner. Check out the full video above.

By Stephen Markley | February 20, 2009 | Comments (1)

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