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Conceived under the directorship of Toshiko Hirai, godfather of the MX-5 (Miata), the AZ-1 comes with A1 credentials. Finally 3 years after the Tokyo motorshow the car went into production with a rear midship 660 EPI twincam 12valve intercooler turbo engine based on the street version of AZ 550 prototype. But Why so long to put it into production? Because, says Mazda, there was the need to change the car's internal skeleton frame to steel. The final AZ-1 model has a controversial look and is not everybody taste. But it attracts people with sharp modern shape and gull-wing doors andlooks like a Scaletrix version of a group C race car.