• Nov 3, 2010
Hipster sneaker Mazda2 – Click above for high-res image gallery

We got a good look at the two funked-up Mazda2s brought to SEMA by the Zoom-Zoom gang, and at least one of them we sorely need to see on the streets. After happening upon a color and materials designer who worked on this and the Mazda Miata Super20, we asked for the details on the whats and the whys. We were told that the slight gray wundercar with the superfine metallic was created to showcase a hipper, in-house side of the 2, à la a Puma sneaker. That means a rich base coat cut by bold graphics and harmonized details that don't detract from the big picture.

For us, it works. And in fact, it works so well that it's just the kind of thing we think Mazda needs to do to introduce some more entry-level Zoom-Zoom to proceedings. Scion has lost its way, but the Focus ST is coming and the Fiesta is selling loaded up with options, so there's no reason the Mazda2 needs to sit in the bargain fuel economy corner. The wheel and tire combo might need a bit more attention, but it'd be a shame for this car to remain a unicorn.

On the other side of the stand was its "Evil Track" twin racing version, with a set of slicks and a roll cage. We certainly wouldn't mind seeing that one, either... but Mazda, come on – the Sneaker2 is the way to go. Bring it. Until that happens, check out this pair of 2s in the galleries of high-res photos below.

Photos copyright ©2010 Jonathon Ramsey / AOL

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Are these JDM or EU models? Projector headlamps, manual boxes...

      Mods are great :-)
      • 4 Years Ago
      Look like some functional 15x8 or 15x9 949 6UL wheels with some apropriately wide/sticky tires.
      • 4 Years Ago
      hot. hot. hot.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Zoom, Zoom, Zoom
      • 4 Years Ago
      When I first saw the Mazda2's I was underwhelmed, but after having seen the Evil Trackcar, I'm quite impressed.
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is still an econo-box tin-can underneath.

      Mazda thinks this is a good idea, but doesn't build a fixed-roof Miata coupe sports car with the turbo engine, or a variant between Miata and RX8 with 2-doors, a liftback, and a fixed roof? (piston or rotary engine, or the choice of either one...)

      Color me unimpressed. Painting up and bolting on some wheels onto a sardine can does not a performance car make.
        • 4 Years Ago
        BoxerFanantic you don't get it. It's not about you and your buddies going our to run moutain passes or GT touring at 150+mph. This is just the type of car I would expect a young person going to the autocross on the weekend but needing some practicality to purchase. It's fun but doesn't cost so much to get into and doesn't have to spend it's time during the week sitting in a garage on jack stands. Actually reminds me of the Civics of a few years back that I see at autocross with small cheap sticky tires and the drivers laughing there way through the timing lights.
        • 4 Years Ago
        top of the line miatas are already as expensive as RX-8's... the next gen miata will be smaller and i assume cheaper, so the next gen rx7 may have some more breathing room as far as price goes. dont hold your breath for a piston option.

        judging by your name, youre either a fan of sti's or 911's.... both were glorified economy cars at some point. your dismissive attitude is funny. bolting on some wheels/tires onto a sardine can usually makes for a good performance car. low weight and high grip is a good combination under any circumstances.

        not that SEMA is about performance in any respect anyways.
        • 4 Years Ago
        STIs are based on Impreza, but they have a WHOLE LOT more done underneath than this mazda 2, and starts off with a longitudinal AWD drivetrain from the start, not FWD.

        The Porsche 911 was NEVER an economy car, and has NEVER shared any parts with VW economy cars, despite a layout similarity. The 356 was never an economy car, either.

        This is still designed to a price point, then modified.

        This still probably has less than 170 horsepower, even tuned up for the SEMA show.


        And it still has un-neccessary doors for a sports car.

        Mazda HAS a sports car, that they barely do anything with, it is almost all aftermarket. They did not sell the NB Miata fixed-roof coupe anywhere outside of Japan.

        This is neither a sports car, nor particularly practical. A Mazdaspeed 3 is what people buy if they want a daily driver that combines practicality with sporty dynamics, and speed, and even THAT is still FWD, without getting the AWD that the short-lived Mazdaspeed 6 had. I considered a Mazdaspeed 6. I ended up buying a 5-speed turbocharged Subaru Legacy, because it was MORE powerful, and the AWD was a better system. And it IS practical and sporty at the same time. Far more than ANY Mazda 2.

        Mazda has a sports car. yet they leave that mostly alone, and come up with this econo-box with bold graphics and chunky tires, and call it "tuned."

        I care less and less about what people TUNE, if it isn't based on an inherently solid premise, and technically well-suited platform. It isn't as if Mazda has nothing else in it's catalog with sporting credentials.

        USE THE SPORTS CAR AS A SPORTS CAR. Leave the econo-box to the penny-pinchers, it will NEVER be a sports car.
        • 4 Years Ago
        BTW, I have two Subarus, and.... A MAZDA MIATA.

        I wouldn't trade the 1999 Miata in my garage for this facade on a Mazda 2 if you paid me to take it. I have seen the Mazda 2 in person, and it is tall, short-of-length, narrow, and stumpy. It is no performance car, no matter how it is dressed.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Sure, the Mazdaspeed3 is great and all, but at a curb weight of 3272 lbs, it's hardly a featherweight.

        Can you imagine how much MORE fun this car could be, at 1000 pounds less!? That's a major advantage. With go-cart handling, and pretty much ANY bump in power from stock and this would be a seriously fun car. I'm sure it would be a great autoX car.

        Oh and leave the back doors on. They are how you get into the back seat.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The Evil Track is my favorite car of the show so far. The designers really nailed it with the design and color scheme.
        • 4 Years Ago
        But how come they couldn't fix the "smile" on the "Evil" car? It just doesn't match.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Agreed; that color/wheel combo looks great on the car.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Mazda, are you listening? I will buy one of these the day it goes on sale if you throw some extra oomph underhood to go with it. I want to replace my NB and the current 2 almost hits every box I want, but it needs more power...and these just look awesome.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Geo. - Go to the epa site and compare the 2 and Fiesta with both having the 5 speed manual. The mileage is a wash. and at that spec the Fiesta starts at $1,000 more.

        Its only when you add the 6 speed to the Fiesta that it gets the highly touted incredible milage but that goes with a package that takes it up 18k - which is 3k more than the 4spd auto Mazda.

        You get a lot for the price in the Mazda. The Ford- if you run the numbers cost vs fuel cost- is a tougher sell. of course the higher gas prices go the better that will look.
        • 4 Years Ago
        looking at the times, I'd say it came down to rowing the extra gear but yes, the Mazda does seem to outpace the Fiesta. though interesting that C&D's fiesta time is about 1/2 sec slower than anyone else's test and their Mazda time is a 1/4 second faster than others.

        experienced "actual" fuel mileage seems to vary depending on who you read. so for now, I'd go with the constant of the EPA. anything else is really anecdotal since its nigh impossible to match a test scenario in the real world.

        • 4 Years Ago
        and that is the problem. the company that goes zoom zoom shares this platform with Ford yet Ford is the one with the better fuel economy AND more oomph. I'll grant Mazda did a better job with weight mgmt but the power/weight ratio is better on the Fiesta.

        dump the Fiesta engine in and go! better yet, shoehorn in the 2.0EB
        • 4 Years Ago

        In Car & Driver's comparison test, the 2 was a full second *faster* to 60 than the Fiesta, and combined real-world MPG was *better* in the 2.

        Check it out, at your leisure:
      • 4 Years Ago
      Whatever they are, I want a set for my Miata.
      • 4 Years Ago
      When is autoblog going to publish a "Booth Professionals" story that focuses on the fairer sex?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Diggin' the Evil Track. Imagine a 2 door!!
      • 4 Years Ago
      What size are those wheels? They look just like 13s with 205/60s.

      I love it.

      (I bet they're 15s, though, and small cars have just become enormous)
      • 4 Years Ago
      The wheel size (15x7 or 8 - hard to tell) is a great "real driver" option - lots of sticky and inexpensive tires to pick from, not too heavy, lightweight (and light unsprung weight is important for handling). Just because everthing else at SEMA has 20"+++ shoved under the fenders with 20 ~ 30 profile rubber doesn't mean that style is practical...(and let's face it, big wheels and low-profile tires are really a style decision - unless you are running a track monster in endurance events and need mammoth brakes to slow you down from 140+ lap after lap...)
        • 4 Years Ago
        agreed, cheap and sticky. I'll be tracking this weekend with a friend who runs 13s, they're about 1/4 the cost of my tires. O.O
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