The Mazda MX-5 Cup Car will start at $53,000.
The Japanese automaker put its newest track car to the test at the NASA 25 Hours of Thunderhill race, purposely entering them in the “E0″ class so it wouldn’t compete with other Mazda teams.
Mazda had no intentions of scoring a victory with the new MX-5 Cup Car but wanted to use the 25-hour race to gather data with real world testing. Essentially, the 25 Hours of Thunderhill race is the equivalent of 33 1/3 45-minute Battery Tender MX-5 Cup races, far more than what’s in a normal season.
Despite being overclassed, the MX-5 Cup Cars found themselves lapping at speeds much faster than the majority of the field in the rain, including the fastest classes.
The 2016 Global MX-5 Cup season will start during the IMSA weekend at Mazda Laguna Seca Raceway on April 29 – May 1. Production of the Mazda MX-5 Cup Car is being handled by Long Road Racing, which already has over 70 orders in-hand.
“While not as well-known as the Rolex 24 at Daytona, the NASA 25 Hours at Thunderhill is just as tough on equipment,” said John Doonan, Mazda’s motorsports director. “With over 70 orders for the new car, we wanted a way to further showcase the quality, durability, and reliability of the race car in true Mazda fashion. Our drivers were Mazda employees and dealers. Our pit crew was made up 100% by volunteers, mainly Mazda employees taking vacation time to do this. “Driving Matters” isn’t just a slogan; it’s a way of life for Mazda.”