Mazda has confirmed a pair of concept cars for the Tokyo motor show later this month, one likely previewing the next-generation Mazda 3 small car, and the other giving a glimpse of the company's next instalment of its 'Kodo' design language.
- shares

The company says its theme for the 2017 event is "Celebrate Driving", hinting at the company's plans to continue offering fun-to-drive cars in the wake of the push for autonomous vehicles.

While not officially confirmed as the Mazda 3 concept, the company says the first show car (above) in Tokyo is a "product concept model" in the form of a compact hatchback that "fuses next-generation technology and design".

The concept will feature Mazda's next-generation technologies - though all the company has said so far is that these systems will apply a "human-centred design philosophy" - and the upcoming SkyActiv-X compression-ignition petrol engine. With the all-new Mazda 3 expected in the next 12 months, it's logical to assume this concept will preview the company's next small car.

Meanwhile, the second show car (above) is pitched as a "design vision model" that will "define the next-generation of Mazda design".

The shadowy teaser image doesn't give a lot away, but it does bear a resemblance to the 2015 RX-Vision concept, which was initially thought to preview the rumoured RX-9 rotary sports car.

Other headlining models bound for the Tokyo show include the new Mazda CX-8 SUV (above), along with a special-edition MX-5 with a dark cherry red canopy and auburn nappa leather.

Stay tuned to CarAdvice for our coverage of the 2017 Tokyo motor show later this month.