When Mazda’s next-generation Mazda5 debuts later this year, it will mark the high-water point for the brand’s Nagare design language. Named for a 2006 concept that first showed off the dramatically flowing (some might say overwrought) look, Nagare has not been a stunning success, and Mazda announced several months ago that the Mazda5 would be the last car to use the design language. At that time, Mazda said it intended to reposition itself as “The Japanese Alfa-Romeo,” but lines like that could mean literally anything. Today, with the debut of the Mazda Shinari Concept, it’s clear that Mazda’s new look is headed in a far more conservative direction. In fact, to our eye, the sleek four-door looks quite a bit like the meeting point between the Tesla Model S and the Fisker Karma. In any case, it fits the “Japanese Alfa-Romeo” billing quite well. Plus, it doesn’t look like a deranged Pokemon. Now that’s progress!
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