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June 21, 2018

How Did Mazda Manage to Get More Power Out of the 2.0-liter Skyactiv-G?

Mazda has finally confirmed that their more powerful, higher-revving MX-5 won’t be a Japanese only offering. It’s going to be made available for overseas markets as early as the September of this year.

To recap, the changes for 2019 include the adoption of a tilt/telescopic steering wheel (42 millimeters of travel), easier opening doors with more stops, an available brown-colored soft top, niceties such as a rear-view camera and better cup holders, and more active safety features such as Smart City Brake Support and Traffic Sign Recognition.

Most importantly though, the MX-5 will gain 15 percent more horsepower (184 versus 160) and slightly better torque (205 Nm versus 200 Nm). What’s even better is that the redline has been bumped up to 7,500 rpm from 6,800 rpm. The best part? There’s a negligible 3.17-kilogram weight gain (kept in check mainly thanks to the adoption of an aluminum steering shaft in place of the steel unit).

How has Mazda managed all this trickery? Well, they’ve detailed all the changes:
  • Reducing internal mass and friction: Each piston has been reduced 27 grams in mass, thanks to a minimized skirt area. Connecting rods are 41 grams lighter than previous units.
  • Reducing exhaust loss: The upgraded engine carries an increased valve opening angle and valve lift height. The inner diameter of the exhaust manifold has also been increased. The net results are a 30-percent reduction in pumping losses.
  • Improved combustion: Reconfigured intake ports and new high-diffusion, higher-pressure fuel injectors improve the tumble and swirl of fuel in the cylinder and better-atomize fuel. The benefit is improved efficiency and torque at all rpm.
  • Dual-mass flywheel: Replacing the single-mass flywheel with a low-inertia, dual-mass flywheel improves smoothness and responsiveness.
  • A new exhaust system with richer sound quality.
  • New final drive ratio: The transmission’s final drive ratio has been increased from 3.454 to 3.583 in models equipped with an automatic transmission in order to improve linear response to match the driver’s intentions. Gear ratios are otherwise unchanged from previous models.

Naturally, the more powerful MX-5 will be made available in countries like Japan, North America, and Europe first. Plus, with Mazda Philippines just announcing the arrival of the 2018 MX-5 models (the one with the optional Dark Cherry top and the RF with a manual transmission), don’t expect these more powerful MX-5s to arrive this year. Likely, expect them sometime 2019, possibly with an additional price increase as well.


  1. I thought they would just improve the intake and header, boy I was so wrong. This might be my next car.

  2. What's all the fuss? the BRZ/86 has always had 200hp from a normally aspirated 2 liter since launch 5 years ago

    1. 200 hp yes, but 200kg heavier.that's a huge difference. And despite having 160 hp vs 200hp, the mx5 is still quicker than the brZ/86

    2. Of course I'm aware of that. We're talking about how much power can be derived out of a given displacement (hp/l), how far you can push the limits of technology, given that the press release pretty much focused on the changes they did internally to the engine. And in that sense there is nothing significant here

    3. Try using 91 ron on both cars?

    4. This isn’t a Mazda fanboy site. They’ve just been releasing more news and we’ve happen to be invited to more of their events.

      Agreed that the BRZ/86 produces more power but it also weighs more. At least 100 kg more.

      I think the difference between the BRZ and the MX-5 is that for the Mazda, the power is just right for the handling you get while for the BRZ, the chassis calls for more power to get a better balance. That’s my opinion.

    5. Mazda is good with PR and marketing. That's why you see numerous brainwashed fanboys who believe anything Mazda and other journalists say, lurking in these kind of website/forum.

    6. Lol, toyota is the best with marketing. Selling the most even with inferior products compared to the competition. Skyactiv really works, it's not just marketing and you can feel the difference in quality and driving feel if you drive a mazda compared to the others.

  3. We need to be happy that these rear wheel drive, light and affordable fun cars are here for us. More completion and choices is good for us customers! The only reason someone has to say negative things about the other choices is to validate their choice (ego trip). IF you are a true driving enthusiast, we will welcome more choices and more completion. Let's just hope and pray that they will always continue to make these cars, continue to make it affordable and available for us. Hope they bring back the S2000 and hope that we have more choices. Let's act a little bit more grown up please. Just a little advice, choose a car for yourself to have some fun and not for what others think. Forget about social status, looking cool, getting girls, having bragging rights with cars. All ego stuff, this is why sport car drivers have a bad reputation! This is like choosing a wife to show her off to others, stupid right? Choose a sports car or your wife that will make you happy and enjoy life! Buy a sports car for enjoyment and fun driving experiences. Buy the car that you fall in love with not the car that you feel others will think you're cool. Learn how to improve you're driving skills and driving techniques. This type of mindset will make you a happier! Once you do this, you will truly be part of real "driving enthusiast club".


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