Mazda and Fiat have finally signed the deal which will see the Japanese giant build Alfa Romeo's next sports car.

Originally announced back in May 2012, the signed deal now means Mazda will be producing an Alfa Romeo version of its new MX-5 at its Hirsohima plant in Japan from 2015.

The new MX-5 will have a global platform suitable for different markets around the world, and each car will have different styling attributes.

In a press release, Fiat said: "Through this contractual agreement, Mazda aims to enhance development and production efficiency and revitalise enthusiasm for open-top two-seater sports cars around the world.

"For Fiat, this collaboration will permit the company to deliver a modern interpretation of the classic Alfa Romeo roadster utilising the latest technical solutions, helping Alfa Romeo to achieve its stated goals by 2016."

Sports car fans will be delighted to here both cars will be rear-wheel drive, allowing Alfa Romeo to have a roadster powered by the rear wheels in their model lineup for the first time since 1994.

That car was the Series 4 Spider – the 1990s version of one of Alfa's most iconic cars: the Spider Duetto made famous by Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate.

Fiat and Mazda have also stated both cars will have different engines. Considering the feisty powerplants already used in the MiTo and Giulietta models, the new Spider could be a real treat to drive.