With its most recent entries, the mid-sized 6 and sub-compact 2, Mazda has demonstrated that new generations of cars don't necessarily have to get heavier. Each of the recently introduced new models are at least 100 lbs lighter than the predecessors. For its next generation of new cars, Mazda intends to step up its game even more, aiming for reductions of over 400 lbs. Mazda engineers will completely re-examine the structural design of the cars. One of the areas of focus will be to direct crash forces through the floor pan rather than the body. The large surface area of the floor apparently requires less reinforcement to achieve similar load bearing capacity than the upper body structure. New aerated plastics will also help reduce the weight of the components that dominate the interior of the car. New powertrains, including continued development of the Wankel rotary engine, will also contribute to weight savings.

[Source: AutoCar]

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