Showcased at the Tokyo Mobility Show, the Iconic SP is an EV - though uses a two-rotor engine serving as a generator for a single, rear-mounted electric motor. Total power comes in at 370bhp - a significant increase over the current 2.0 ND’s 181bhp.
Granted, it’s carrying some extra weight - Mazda quotes a 1,450kg kerb weight, around 350kg more than the current car. As well as the more complex powertrain contributing to that, growth in dimensions is partly the cause. At 4.2m long, 1.9m wide and 1.2m tall, the Iconic SP is closer to an Alpine A110 than a current MX-5 in size.
Mazda is keen to highlight the green credentials of the Wankel. As well as running on carbon-neutral synthetic fuels, it says the ‘highly-scalable’ unit can also run on hydrogen - giving a hint that the rotary’s future could just be beginning. Of course, it’s not the first rotary range extender - that honour goes to the recently introduced MX-30 REV.
Of course, you can charge the onboard battery in more conventional manners - and even use it as a generator for other electronic devices. Handy if you’re on a remote camping trip, or there’s a power cut at home.
Interior touches include the body-coloured trim flash like the ND has, as well as two screens serving as an instrument cluster and infotainment system. Note the Ferrari-like gear selector too.
Masahiro Moro, Mazda's president and CEO, said: “Mazda will always deliver vehicles that remind people that cars are pure joy and an indispensable part of their lives. As a car-loving company that mass-produces the inspiring mobility experience, we are committed to shaping the future with our partners sharing the same goal, as well as our fans, where everyone can proudly say, 'we love cars.' With such a strong will, Mazda is committed to enrich life-in-motion for those we serve.”
It’s not the first time Mazda has conceived a rotary MX-5 concept - take a look at the Cosmo 21 - but it’s the closest it’s come to reality yet.