No big surprise here, but Mazda has given its popular MX-5 Miata sports car a refresh for the 2013 model year, which is now on sale over in Japan.
A few days ago, photos of the refreshed Miata leaked out onto the Internet, showing off its new CX-5-ey front end. The Japanese automaker has now made the changes official, announcing that the MX-5 Miata not only got aesthetic adjustment, but also a new pedestrian safety feature, and a few performance tweaks.
The new MX-5 front end benefits from a more pointed black mesh grille, while the foglight housings and lip spoiler have been altered for a sportier and more sleek appearance. Buyers who opt for the power-retractable hardtop also receive new 17-inch wheels while Dolphin Gray Mica will replace Metropolitan Gray Mica as a color option. A tan interior option is also available to buyers.
Mazda also decided to differentiate its hardtop models from its soft top models; the soft top variant has its headlights black-tinted, while the wheels are dark gray, while the interior door handles get a black treatment, and the gauge surrounds are finished off in a dark gray. The hardtop version has all of its accent pieces painted in silver rather than a darker shade.
While no modifcations were done to the powerplant, Mazda did retune the ECU on the manual transmission MX-5 to provide a more linear throttle response. Braking performance has also been altered, with the brake booster being modified to better modulate braking performance on the roadster. Lastly, the MX-5 went on a tiny diet with the redesigned 17-inch wheels, new front bumper, and wiring harness.
Most notable of all the new features on the 2013 MX-5 however is the Active Bonnet. When the vehicle senses a frontal impact under certain conditions, the rear edge of the hood will prop up in order to create more space between the hood and engine compartment. The automaker hopes this reduces the risk of injury if a pedestrian is hit by the car.
Unfortunately there’s no confirmation if the American Miata’s upcoming facelift will resemble the changes seen on the Japanese model, but we highly doubt that the automaker would deviate from what works.