Official: New Alfa Romeo Spider to be Based on the Next Mazda MX-5!

In a surprise announcement that is bound to excite Alfa Romeo fans, the Fiat Group and Mazda revealed today that they have signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the development and production of a new roadster model for the Mazda and Alfa Romeo brands based on the rear-wheel drive architecture of the next MX-5.

"The study calls for both Fiat and Mazda to develop two differentiated, distinctly styled, iconic and brand-specific light weight, roadsters featuring rear-wheel drive," the two automakers said in a joint statement, adding that each car will be powered "by specific proprietary engines unique to each brand".

According to the plan, the next Mazda MX-5 and Alfa Romeo's successor to the Spider will be manufactured at Mazda’s Hiroshima plant in Japan, with production for the Italian model to begin in 2015.

With the exception of the limited production 8C Competizione Spider (2008-2010) and the RZ (1992-1994), the last time Alfa Romeo had a roadster with a front-engine, rear-wheel drive layout was the classic Spider built from 1966 to 1993. This particular model was featured in the 1967 movie The Graduate with Dustin Hoffman.

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