Ever since the third-generation MX-5 appeared in 2005, we’ve been pleading with Mazda to build one worthy of being the hot-hatch killer that so typified its 1989 forbearer.
But perhaps it’s indicative of just how far the MX-5 has drifted from its roots, that this 205bhp road-going MX-5 GT is only a concept.
Mazda say they’d like to ‘test customer reaction’ at the Goodwood Festival Speed, but what do they need to test? It’s not as if they’re suggesting an all-wheel drive four-seat version..
The Mazda MX-5 GT Concept will be on display throughout the festival on Mazda’s stand, as well as taking part in the hillclimb in the ‘First Glance’ category. Built by race specialists Jota Sport, the MX-5 GT Concept produces 205bhp from a normally aspirated 2.0-litre Mazda petrol engine – up from the standard MX-5’s 158bhp – which is mated to the car’s standard manual gearbox.
Suspension has been uprated to improve handling and is adjustable for different track conditions, while aerodynamic assistance comes from a carbon front splitter, a rear diffuser and boot spoiler.
The MX-5 GT Concept is inspired by Mazda’s podium winning MX-5 GT race car, so it would be rude if they didn’t up the volume of its exhaust note with a sports system – complete with central tailpipe.
Recaro seats have been added to pin the driver (and passenger) more securely on twisty roads, and together with a number of carbon enhancements they contribute to a slight reduction in the MX-5 GT’s weight.
If that’s not quite serious enough, Mazda is also offering R-rated (semi-slick) road tyres and body-coloured roll hoops behind the seats, for turning your MX-5 GT into a purpose-built track car.
Is there really any question over whether Mazda should put it into production?