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900,000 Mazda MX-5s Now Sold

 

The world's most popular roadster, the Mazda MX-5, sets a new record this week when total production of Mazda Motor Corporation's iconic sportscar passes 900,000 units on 4 February, 2011.  This significant milestone has been achieved 21 years and 10 months after mass production of the first-generation MX-5 commenced in April 1989.

In Britain, the Mazda MX-5 has enjoyed 20 years of incredible popularity, owing to UK consumers accounting for over 10 percent of global sales and 40 percent of European sales, while receiving a host of ‘best sportscar' awards from motoring and consumer media. 

"For British motorists, the Mazda MX-5 is the ultimate expression of our Zoom-Zoom philosophy of creating cars that are fun to drive," comments Jeremy Thomson, Managing Director, Mazda UK.  "Over 20 years, the MX-5 has maintained its position as an affordable, lightweight sportscar that is responsive and rewarding to drive, while also proving itself to be ‘recession proof'.  We sold 10 percent more MX-5s last year than we did in 2009 and owners enjoy remarkably high residual values.  The introduction of the third-generation models meant that the MX-5 became much more than a ‘sunny weekend' car and the Roadster Coupe, featuring the electric folding roof, now accounts for the majority of sales as buyers look to use their Mazda sportscar all-year round."

Today, the Mazda MX-5 continues to be the most popular Roadster in the UK.  The regular 10-strong range for 2011 is priced from £17,975 to £23,205 (on-the-road).  Currently, the range is boosted by two ‘special edition' versions of the legendary sportscar called the MX-5 Miyako.  The 1.8i Miyako soft-top costs £18,769.68 (OTR) and the more powerful 2.0i Miyako roadster coupe has a £21,321.81 (OTR) price tag.

Back in 2000, the Mazda MX-5 was initially certified by Guinness World Records as the world's "Best selling two-seater sportscar" when production reached 531,890 units in May.  Since then, Guinness updated the record when production passed 700,000 and 800,000 units, respectively.  Currently Mazda is reapplying to Guinness World Records to have the record updated to acknowledge production of the 900,000th vehicle.

During the 1960s and 1970s, numerous lightweight and fun-to-drive sportscars offered nimble handling and free-spirited open-air motoring.  In the 1980s, Mazda decided to resurrect this spirit with a new roadster for the modern age.  Using the latest engineering techniques, Mazda developed the MX-5 and introduced it in February 1989 as a reminder that driving could still be fun despite ever-stricter safety and quality standards.  To this day, the Mazda MX-5 remains the longest-running model in Mazda's global line-up.

Nobuhiro Yamamoto, programme manager for the current MX-5, said, "Since Mazda launched the original MX-5, it has undergone two complete product redesigns and a series of upgrades.  Its enduring success is due to the strong support it enjoys from MX-5 fans around the world.  Going forwards, I will strive to keep the MX-5's spirit alive while evolving it into a car that will be loved by even more people."

Mazda's senior managing executive officer in charge of development, Seita Kanai, said, "More than 20 years have passed since the first-generation Mazda MX-5 was born.  During this time, society and vehicles themselves have changed significantly.  Responding to environmental issues has become increasingly important for all automakers.  As part of its environmental efforts, Mazda is pushing forwards with the development of future products that will incorporate SKYACTIV technologies.  Many of the elements that go into our SKYACTIV technologies are based on long years of development work that have gone into the MX-5.  Indeed, the guiding principle behind SKYACTIV - to build cars that are fun to drive - is perfectly embodied by our MX-5."

"As we head toward the next production milestone of one million units," Kanai continued, "Mazda is committed to further evolving the MX-5.  We will refine its fun-to-drive character and further enhance its environmental and safety capabilities.  As Mazda passes its 91st anniversary, we are turning our sights towards our 100th birthday.  In the years ahead, together with our sportscars loyal fan base, we will continue to cherish the MX-5 as a symbol of the Mazda brand."

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