Mazda Will Get Its Mojo Back With Spirit Racing Sub-Brand


Things are hotting up at Mazda with the announcement of a new sporting sub-brand. The name Mazda Spirit Racing is set to feature on higher performance editions of the Miata and Mazda3 if two concept cars get the go-ahead for production.

The Japanese firm showed Mazda Spirit Racing versions of the Miata and Mazda3 at the Tokyo Auto Salon, where new president Masahiro Moro pronounced his intent to bring back the glory days. “For the first time in 25 years since MazdaSpeed we have established a factory motorsports division—Mazda Spirit Racing,” he explained.

Mazda has been competing in Japan’s Super Taikyu series since 2021 and is expanding its race program for 2024. Through a partnership with Gran Turismo it will give e-sports players the opportunity to race for real and will also enter carbon-neutral race cars in the form of a bio-diesel powered Mazda3 and an e-fuel Miata.

Those cars are the inspiration for the two concepts which Mazda says it is evaluating for production, to bring the Mazda Spirit Brand to the road as well as the track. The Roadster (Miata) Spirit Racing RS Concept features a modified two-liter motor and uprated suspension, while the Mazda Spirit Racing Mazda3 show car boasts cool carbon accessories including a new front spoiler and rear wing. The car’s final specification is still under discussion but design boss Ikuo ‘Speedy’ Maeda said it will provide a “sense of motorsports connected to the No 55 car competing in Super Taikyu.”

In addition to special edition vehicles Mazda Spirit Racing will launch a range of merchandise, including watches, aimed at Mazda motorsports enthusiasts.

Why the sudden change of heart for Mazda, which has been pushing its SUVs ahead of all else? It can’t be any coincidence that new boss Moro-san is both an experienced engineer and marketeer who presided over Mazda’s racing program in the U.S.A., while design guru Maeda is a handy club-level racer. With these two in charge the future of faster Mazdas is looking promising.

Click below for more about
Read next Up next: Would You Toss Your Trailer for a Custom Citroën Car Hauler?


    As a former owner of a 2006 Mazdaspeed 6 and a 2017 Mazda 3, I would love to see Mazda re-embrace the Mazdaspeed ethos. Especially the Speed 6, I loved that car. Miss it. I understand the reason why it went away, given their upmarket push, but I think there is still room for go-fast versions that don’t detract from the classy/refined image they clearly want. The Speed 6 was very low-key and classy looking for its day while being an absolute hoot. Much more mature looking than its contemporary STI and Evo equivalents at the time.

    Agreed! Back before I bought my VW GTI Mk5 I had test driven both the Speed 3 and Speed 6. The Speed 3 was very similar to the GTI but less refined, lots more torque steer. The Speed 6 would have been my choice but I couldn’t find one optioned the way I wanted and all the local dealers were pains in the rear to deal with. VW dealer was super easy to work with so got my business.

    I currently own a 2009 Mazdaspeed 3 and have had the privilege of tracking every generation of Miata. I am so excited to see Mazda re-embrace their racing heritage from where we fell in love with the company. The trickle-down from their racing divisions have produced some of the most engaging and thrilling drivers cars to date. Thank you Mazda for deciding to “Zoom-Zoom” again, its good to see you’re back.

    Doesn’t feel like they’re trying enough. No mechanical performance improvements, locked ECU as per usual. Very anti modding typical arrogant Japanese culture. Their way or no way mindset. Like come on, merch?

    It’s about time, I should have never sold my 2003 Mazdaspeed Protege or Mazdaspeed MX5! I do still have my 2004 RX8 that I sold the Protege for! I still can’t believe nothing has come since!

    Great news indeed!

    They need to fix the 6-speed manual transmission reliability issues. Increase the negative camber adjustment range. Add factory suspension, wheel and tire upgrades for autocross and HPDE track use. Provide factory warrantee for track use. Add lightness.

    A few errors.
    -Author called the 2 liter engine a 2 liter motor.
    -Author mixed up the speed3 terms.. Said front spoiler and rear wing. They’re the same thing, either both spoilers or accurately, anti-wings
    -It’s not a change of heart. They will continue to sell and push their excellent crossovers. Having sportscars just adds to their portfolio. They need to survive, and that won’t happen without the crossovers

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *