2.0-Litre Mazda MX-5 Dead In Europe, But Not The UK

Emissions rules have led to the dropping of the bigger-engined MX-5 on the continent, but it remains available in the UK
Mazda MX-5 2.0 - front
Mazda MX-5 2.0 - front

The current Mazda MX-5 is a fantastic car, no matter if it has the little 1.5-litre, 130bhp four-pot engine or the bigger 2.0-litre, 181bhp lump. If you’re in mainland Europe, making that choice has just become a lot more straightforward, as the larger engine’s just been dropped.

Its discontinuation is – surprise, surprise – the result of ever more stringent European Union emissions rules. Despite offering a number of hybrids and one full EV – the MX-30 – it seems that the raspy, naturally-aspirated motor had to go to keep Mazda’s fleet emissions down and avoid hefty fines for the company.

Mazda MX-5 2.0 - interior
Mazda MX-5 2.0 - interior

The news was confirmed to Car Throttle in a statement from Mazda’s UK division, which confirmed that “the 2.0-litre will be dropped from EU markets due to changing emissions regulations.”

But wait – Britain’s not in the EU anymore, so what about us? Well, for all the, erm… complications the country has faced as a result of Brexit, there is some good news here: “[The 2.0-litre] will continue to be sold in the UK for the foreseeable future, as we are not affected by this regulation change.” Take some solace in that next time you’re stood in a painfully long passport queue at an airport.

Mazda MX-5 2.0 - rear
Mazda MX-5 2.0 - rear

This isn’t the first time Brexit has kept a performance car around in the UK while it’s been dropped in the EU, though. On the continent, the only versions of the Porsche 718 Boxster and Cayman available are the high-performance, low-volume GT4, Spyder and RS models, as the rest don’t meet new EU cybersecurity rules. In Britain, though, the whole range will stick around until the end of the model’s lifecycle.

The bigger-engined MX-5 now joins it as a post-Brexit UK market oddity, and with the next-gen MX-5 likely a few years off yet, we should still have a while to enjoy it.

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