The Mazda Kabura is a concept sports car shown by the Japanese manufacturer Mazda in 2006.
The Kabura, introduced at the 2006 North American International Auto Show, is a sport compact which shows styling themes and technologies which could appear in future production models. It was designed in Irvine, California by Mazda of North America design chief Franz von Holzhausen, whose past projects have included the Audi TT and Pontiac Solstice.
Kabura incorporates the front-engine, rear-drive layout similar to the Mazda MX-5 and the Mazda RX-8 and hints of physical design characteristics similar to the Mazda RX-8 and the discontinued Mazda MX-3. Instead of a typical 2+2 layout, the Kabura has an unusual 3+1 arrangement, giving greater passenger space versus a traditional coupe, without increasing weight or size. All passenger seats fold flat to make additional room for cargo.
“Kabura” is a Japanese term taken from kabura-ya, an arrow that makes a howling sound when fired, and was historically used to signal the start of a battle. This “first arrow into battle” is meant to represent Mazda's pursuit of unique styling themes and technologies - such as the rotary engine. Kabura represents the first Mazda compact coupe for the 21st century. Mazda has not announced plans to build a production version of the Kabura, but the design embodies several innovations that Mazda could implement when a compact sports coupe is ready for production. One of Kabura’s roles is exposing a possible future design direction for a new model.
Power is supplied to Kabura concept's rear wheels from a 2.0 L version of Mazda’s MZR DOHC 16-valve engine. The Kabura uses 245/35R19 Bridgestone Potenza front tires and 245/35R20 tires at the rear. While this concept has been assembled with several MX-5 chassis components, the basic dimensions fall between the MX-3 and the RX-8. As a sport compact, it would have slotted below the RX-8 in the Mazda lineup.