It first made news in Japan, but the more powerful 2019 Miata is destined to hit the U.S. market as well.
We would have been terribly dismayed if Mazda’s news of a more powerful Miata didn’t make it across the Pacific to the U.S. The 2019 Miata will indeed see a power bump in the U.S. for the next model year as well, courtesy of a new dual-mass flywheel, reduced exhaust losses and internal friction within the engine. The upshot? Mazda bumped the power in the 2019 Miata from 155 in the current iteration to 181 – a 17-percent increase. Engineers also gave the new Miata a higher redline – up to 7,500 rpm from 6,800 in the current model. Torque is up as well, from 148 lb-ft to 151 lb-ft.
Power isn’t the only place Mazda has updated the 2019 Miata either. The roadster will be available with a brown canvas top, new 17-inch wheels, and – finally – a telescoping steering wheel. That ought to help out with taller or shorter drivers by making the driving experience a bit more comfortable. The 2019 Miata will also come standard with a rearview camera, as required by government mandate, Traffic Sign Recognition and Smart City Brake Support, which works up to about 20 mph.
A gram here, a gram there
Despite the extra equipment and tweaks to the powertrain, the new Miata only gains seven pounds over the current model. Mazda has long employed a “gram strategy” when it comes to designing the Miata. In essence, if engineers need to add any weight, they have to take it away from somewhere else. In the end, we end up getting a more powerful, rear-wheel drive roadster that’s still available with a six-speed manual transmission. That’s what car enthusiasts – particularly fans of the Miata – would call a win-win.
The 2019 Miata will go on sale this fall. Mazda hasn’t announced pricing information yet, but we don’t suspect the new Miata will cost much more than the current model, if it sees a price hike at all. Stay tuned to TFLcar and TFLnow for more news, views and real-world reviews!