Mazda Revives Rotary for RX-Vision Concept

Mazda has pulled the covers off of a new rotary-engined show car dubbed the RX-Vision at the 2015 Tokyo motor show, and it’s impressive.

The new two-seater is said to embody the spirit of Mazda’s ‘Kodo – Soul of Motion’ design language but it simultaneously references the last generation RX-7, the last rotary engined model produced before the company decided to incorporate half doors to ease rear seat access on the 2+2-seat RX-8.

Mazda RX-Vision Concept (2015)

The RX-Vision’s front-engined, rear drive layout allows for classic RX-model proportions, maintaining a sense of lineage and authenticity. Its width to height ratio, short overhangs and generous dash to axle make the model immediately recognizable as a serious sports car, while its tumblehome is reminiscent of some luxury British sports cars and the headlamp treatment is near identical to that of the 2010 Citroen Survolt concept.

“The design aim was to shave away all but the essentials, giving birth to the dynamic tension and ambience of a machine that is all business,” says Mazda.

Mazda RX-Vision Concept (2015)

The company’s clay modelers have carefully created the RX-Vision concept’s body to ensure light reflections subtly change the car’s appearance depending on the viewing angle, conveying motion without relying on character lines or other elements. It’s a tactic Mazda’s recently employed on production cars such as the MX-5. The red color choice also highlights the contrast between light and shadow that encapsulates the RX-Vision design.

“Weaving specific design motifs that reflect the history of Mazda sports cars into the styling of the RX-Vision reinforces the company’s unchanging passion for the sports car,” Mazda notes.

Mazda RX-Vision Concept (2015)

The interior is a blend of the contemporary and the traditional. The design team pursued an ultimately simple yet powerful image, fusing the tactility of painstakingly handcrafted work with a sophisticated, machined-finish ambience.

Intricate instrumentation gives the cockpit a true mechanical appeal, which, in combination with the simple instrument panel and leather trim incorporating a saddle motif on the center tunnel, creates an interior atmosphere that speaks of handcrafted warmth and quality.

Mazda RX-Vision Concept (2015)

It turns out my speculative assumptions about the MX-5 Coupe were incorrect after all.


Founded in 2012, Form Trends tirelessly covers the automotive design industry in all corners of the globe to bring you exclusive content about cars, design, and the people behind the products.