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Mazda marking centenary in style

Mazda marking centenary in style

Despite being a hundred years old, Mazda only made its first ‘proper’ car in 1960. From its inception on January 30 1920, the company that would become Mazda made cork, engines, three-wheeled cars, bikes and trucks before making its first passenger car.

That first car was the R360 Coupe. A four-wheel, two door coupe with a tiny 356CC engine making 16 hp. It used an air cooled motorcycle engine placed in the rear and it worked very well. It had a very cute design, was light, fuel efficient and cheap to manufacture and buy. That made it an instant hit.

Then Mazda went shopping in Germany and made a deal with a company called NSU. They made the Felix Wankel rotary engine. Mazda tweaked it, improved it and then put it into a Cosmo 110S in 1967. From then, Mazda continued making cars and we thank them for it.

Mazda 100th Anniversary Special Edition collection

To celebrate their centenary, Mazda are releasing special editions of the Mazda2, Mazda3, Mazda6, MX-5, MX-5 RF, CX-3, CX-30, MX-30 and CX-5.

All cars will have a similar look and feel to that original R360 with a Snow Flake White Pearl Mica paintjob. There will also be 100th Anniversary badging, burgundy carpeting and interior trim to echo that first car. Each will also have a special key with unique fob and presentation box.

As an extra, the MX-5 will also have a burgundy soft top which reflects the roof colour on that original R360. All models look good but the MX-5 with the burgundy roof even more so!

It’s all about those looks

This is an appearance package only and doesn’t include any mechanical or technological upgrades. That said, the white paint on the cars in the image look amazing. I’m not usually a fan of white cars but that version with its pearlescent finish looks superb.

This new special edition is great to see but also tinged with sadness. There was speculation for years that Mazda were planning to unveil a new rotary-engined sports car for its centenary. The Mazda 100th Anniversary Special Edition collection proves otherwise. That’s not to say it won’t happen, it just won’t happen right now.

The Mazda 100th Anniversary Special Edition collection is available across the world. Considering the situation right now, you can order online but deliveries may be in a few months’ time. Once Mazda of Hamilton reopens, we may be able to give you a better idea of timescales.

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