Mazda and the MX series
...a story in the story.
In 2020 Mazda celebrated its first hundred years (here the episode of the poadcast in which we talked about it), consecrated with a significant launch, that of the MX-30, the first model of the 100% electric series production house, and that in Italy it will be marketed from September.
And it is certainly no coincidence that this "first" has the prefix "MX", better known certainly for the small roadster bearing the number 5 and that from the nineties onwards has contributed to rewriting the rules of fun, sporty models, with an attractive design but above all cheap.
MX, which stands for vanguard
The MX prefix, however, appears on the models of the Japanese brand already in the early eighties with the MX-81 Aria. It was a very bright and wedge-shaped sedan, a distinctive sign - this - of Bertone's design: but it was also a concept, which gave carte blanche to Marc Dechamps' fantasy which drew a unique piece from it really particular. In addition to the wedge line, in fact, what impressed most of the MX-81 when it was presented at the Tokyo show was the (digital) instrumentation and the steering wheel, the latter being rectangular and recessed; then there were the swing seats and famous retractable headlights, which will also be taken up later by the first series of the MX-5, the NA.
For Mazda MX therefore meant - and still means - avant-garde, break of conventions: so in 1983 the MX-02, a five-door steering rear wheels and head up display on the windshield, then again the MX-03, coupe concept long-nose with 315 hp triple rotor engine. This, with futuristic interiors, even presented an airplane cloche and not a real steering wheel. Then it was the turn of the MX-04, a sports car with front engine and rear-wheel drive and with removable glass panels, which transformed the coupe into a beach buggy roadster with one shot.
MX-5, the icon
In 1989 the MX-5 appeared on the scene, known by amateurs also with the sole name of Miata and which last year, on the occasion of the 30th anniversary, was presented in a limited edition. The Miata, launched just when the automotive industry was abandoning the idea of a fun and inexpensive roadster, also paved the way for series production of the "MX" models, so that the MX-3 and MX- 6 both successive, are two different proposals of the MX-5 coupé: on the one hand the elegant 4-seater hatchback, on the other a premium and larger version of the coupe.
The 2000s and SUVs
The "cataloged" MX concepts have returned since 2001, with the Sport Tourer and then the Flexa in 2005, both preludes to the Mazda5, but also with the 2002 MX-Sport Runabout preview of the second generation of the Mazda2, while the MX-Sportif of 2003 it was the concept that prefigured the first generation of the Mazda3.
But it was the MX-Crossport of 2005 that marked Mazda's new course from that moment on: a sports-inspired concept (from the RX-8), a sport utility that was going to announce the CX-7 and then the whole lucky CX family.