Details of the hotly-anticipated next-generation Mazda MX-5 have surfaced in Japan this week, with Holiday Auto magazine getting a hold of one very telling patent drawing.
The new MX-5 looks set to continue the design themes of the original 1989 roadster, steering clear of Mazda's new Kodo styling language - just as the current 'NC' model adopted very few of the previous Nagare language's traits.
The current updated version of the NC MX-5 does offer one nod to the family face however, in the form of Mazda's familiar trapezoidal 'smile' grille and eye-like foglight bezels.
For the new model, a dashed outline suggests Mazda will return to the simple ellipse grille and round foglight recesses of the MX-5's predecessors - including the first series of the current MX-5.
The original MX-5's pop-up headlights will stay relegated to the history books however, with modern pedestrian safety requirements making the style illegal in most countries.
The new roadster will reportedly utilise a 1.5 litre SkyActiv-G petrol engine in the Japanese market, producing around 95kW, while the US market will get a 110kW 2.0 litre version of the SkyActiv-G engine.
Its power figures may not be awe-inspiring, but then that has never been the MX-5 way. As with previous generations, Mazda is focusing on lightweight construction and handling, and it is known that the company is shooting for a kerb weight below 1000kg.
An unveiling for the new MX-5 has yet to be announced, but with a 2013 debut expected, we should see more details surface over the coming year.