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September MX-5 launch confirmed

Mazda to reveal the all-new MX-5

Mazda will be taking the wraps off the fourth generation of its wonderful little roadster at a special event in Barcelona on September 3.

No one could have predicted how successful the MX-5 (or Miata as it's known in the US) would become when Mazda launched it back in 1989.

With its curved edges, pop-up headlights and classic combination of front-mounted engine and rear-wheel drive, it epitomized affordable fun, and disproved the stereotype once and for all that Japanese car companies don't know how to design cars with character and personality.

Ok, it looked suspiciously like a Lotus Elan and handled like one too, but neither of those things are bad and over the last 25 years and two reimaginings, the car holds the Guinness World Record for the best-selling two-seater roadster of all time -- 945,000 models and counting.

So as not to alienate non-European MX-5 fans, Mazda has organized simultaneous satellite events in Japan and the US too.

"The MX-5 is the product that best epitomizes Mazda's convention-defying spirit and our love of driving," says Mazda Motor Europe President and CEO Jeff Guyton. "It has been grabbing people's attention for 25 years, and with the new-generation model we're aiming to share this passion with yet another generation of drivers."

The new car, which is expected to stick to the tried and tested formula of poise before power, is also eagerly anticipated because it will also serve as the platform for a new Fiat roadster.