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Rendered: The Mazda MX-5 Miata Shooting Brake & Coupe

A Spanish artist's imagination created this ND MX-5, which has hints of BMW's Z3 Coupe and lots of presence.

Alex Kierstein
Jul 9, 2020
Illustrator: Jose Antonio Aranda

On the whole, the automotive media has been enthusiastic about every Mazda MX-5 Miata derivative, no matter the generation. The smiles-per-dollar ratio has always been high across four distinct models, and for most the ability to stow all (or in the case of the MX-5 RF, some) of the roof is at least a bonus if not the major selling point. But there's always been a small, vocal contingent that has wished for the rigidity or looks of a permanently fixed top.

And Mazda has sometimes fed that fire. The M Coupe Concept of 1996 lit it, and the extremely rare production Japan-only 2003 Roadster Coupe fanned it white hot. Just 22 pounds heavier than the standard roadster, the second-generation NB production Coupe seemed like a car that could become a reality in the States. And given the relative success of the later Toyota 86 and Subaru BRZ, in retrospect maybe it could have. But instead, Mazda came up with a couple of compromises: the power-retractable hardtop version of the NC, and now the ND MX-5 RF with its fascinating targa roof.

Jose Antonio Aranda MX 5 Renderings Miata M Concept Photo 14/14   |   Rendered: The Mazda MX-5 Miata Shooting Brake & Coupe

But there's no factory fixed-top ND-generation MX-5, and there's not likely to be. That's too bad, because these renders by Spanish artist Jose Antonio Aranda are exactly the sort of thing that sets our imaginations ablaze. First, there's the look itself. The shooting-brake body style has a long history in non-American markets, so there's a bit of forbidden mystique about it. There's also the promise of extra rigidity to reward the driver and improve performance on a track or canyon road. And finally, that extra bit of utility in the covered cargo area makes a weekend getaway with a friend or partner easier and more comfortable.

There's more than a little of the car enthusiasts affectionately refer to as the Clown Shoe in the design, too: the Z3 and M Coupe, which never looked quite this sleek but have a rabid following particularly in M form. To be fair, Mazda would like to move its entire brand upmarket, and a shooting brake derivative could justify a higher price tag, fancier interior bits and mechanical components, and possibly a stouter drivetrain without influencing the regular Miata's carefully studied minimalism.

Jose Antonio Aranda MX 5 Renderings BMW Z3 Coupe Photo 14/14   |   Rendered: The Mazda MX-5 Miata Shooting Brake & Coupe

Update: Aranda has a new design he's excited to let us show you: A coupe—yes, a bit like the concept and production coupes we talked about a bit further up the page. In fact, while the C-pillar arrangement is modernized, there's a classic feel to the roofline that also reminds us both of the final RX-7 and maybe even the new Alpine A110. The artist sought to keep as much of the ND MX-5's lines intact as possible, and the end result is elegant and intriguing.

From the Editors of Super Street: Yes, to all of this. It's not wrong to want to see a platform as fun and with as much possibility as the MX-5's explored in different form factors, even if it is just a design exercise. Aranda's coupe in particular is a good look, and it one would be a kick to fling around, especially with the recent bump in power for the MX-5's 2.0L SkyActiv-G 4-banger.

Jose Antonio Aranda MX 5 Renderings Red Coupe Rendering Photo 14/14   |   Rendered: The Mazda MX-5 Miata Shooting Brake & Coupe

Don't hold your breath. Mazda's come this far without truly satisfying American fixed-roof fans, and we're not mad. The regular MX-5 is great. But we can daydream about what might be along with this particular artist.

Zoom-Zoom Bonus! More Miata Links:
Supercharged NB MX-5 Miata Widebody in Japan
Turbo Pandem ND MX-5 Club

Jose Antonio Aranda MX 5 Renderings Green Wagon Rendering Photo 14/14   |   Rendered: The Mazda MX-5 Miata Shooting Brake & Coupe

 

By Alex Kierstein
9 Articles

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