Mazda's first EV has brought back the RX-8's doors

By topgear, 28 October 2019

This is Mazda’s first fully electric car. And look! It’s got the rear-hinged back doors of an RX-8. A nice, quick, visual clue that this is an EV that’s about a little more than its lack of emissions.

Straight off the bat, Mazda says the MX-30 “has been developed for customers who don’t want to sacrifice driving pleasure when they buy an electric car”. The use of ‘MX’, whose previous appearances have all been on the back of coupes and roadsters, is yet further evidence us driving geeks should be seeking this out over a Leaf.

So the battery is fixed in a way that improves stiffness across the whole car. Mazda’s nifty torque vectoring control has been advanced further to accommodate an e-motor. There’s even a sound package fitted “which is synchronised to motor torque in sound frequency and sound pressure”, though we’ll reserve judgement until we hear it in action for ourselves…

Sure, it’s a high-riding crossover thing, but that – sadly – is what cars must be to grab buyers’ attention at the moment. And by the standards of such things it’s quite chiselled and handsome, though one healthy ’n’ safety conscious member of the TG office has voiced concerns about what impact the almost blade-like bonnet overhang might have on errant pedestrians. Maybe that’s why Mazda’s fitted some actual sound.

You want stats? They are… modest. Its 35.5kWh battery helps serve up 141bhp and 265Nm, figures in the same ballpark as an MX-5, though fully charged range is just 200km. Enough for most commutes, but this isn’t a car for the long haul.

This is the production-spec car, too, and will be launched in late 2020.

STORY Stephen Dobie

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