January 6, 2004
Mazda shows sporty small car, hydrogen RX-8
Detroit, Michigan – There’s no word whether the sub-compact Mazda MX-Micro Sport
concept will make it to North America, but the company did say a production version
of the MX-Micro Sport concept will be launched into a key automotive market during
calendar year 2004.
At 3980 mm (156.7 inches) in length, the MX-Micro Sport concept is compact in size,
505 mm (19.9 inches) shorter than the new Mazda3 five-door. At the same time, it is
nearly as wide as the Mazda3 and 85 mm (3.3 inches) taller, so the cabin feels open,
spacious, and offers room enough for four adults. The luggage compartment comes
equipped with a detachable partition for flexible stowage arrangements. Fitted at
floor level, the partition allows use of the area beneath the floor as a sub trunk.
Fitted in the upper position, the partition can function as a rear shelf and a cover
to conceal luggage from view.
The MX-Micro Sport concept is equipped with Mazda’s 148 horsepower 2.0-liter four
cylinder engine and a six-speed manual transmission. The suspension is a
MacPherson-type front suspension and a torsion beam rear suspension, and tires are
standard 17 inch. With 148 horsepower and a relatively light curb weight, the
MX-Micro Sport should offer quicker acceleration than the base Mazda3 sedan.
In addition to the micro car, Mazda showed a version of the RX-8 that runs on
hydrogen. According to Mazda, the new Renesis rotary engine was developed to run on
either hydrogen fuel or gasoline.