A weak yen and a slew of new models has Mazda within sight of profitability. With Mazda heavily dependent on exports, the yen’s 16 percent decrease in value relative to the U.S. dollar could not have come at a better time for Mazda, as it readies a whole slate of new products for sale.
Last year, carmakers sold more than 1.8 million midsize sedans in the United States. That’s 155,000 per month; 5,095 per day; 212 per hour. It’s 3.53 per minute, even when the dealers are closed, the lights are off, and the salespeople are fast asleep, dreaming of silk ties and customers who show up in rental cars.
The five-door hatchback, long a staple of world markets, is enjoying a resurgance in a big way. While hatchbacks were once regarded as symbols of poverty in the eyes of most Americans, the premium segment is the vanguard of the hatchback today, with everything from the Audi A7 to the Porsche Panamera sporting a “fifth door”.
The first leaked pictures of the BMW 3-Series GT drew more than a few comparisons to the very first Hyundai Elantra GT (shown above). Unlike the two-box GT on sale now, this one looked more like a pseudo-sedan and was part of a sporadic line of five-doors that tried their hand at the American marketplace and ultimately failed.
TTAC readers, this is the one you’ve been waiting for; a fun-to-drive, lightweight, stick-shift sports sedan that doesn’t require a home equity loan to purchase. Now, the question is, will anyone buy it?
If you were to read certain outlets, you may have the mistaken impression that Mazda is making a move upmarket. More than one industry gadfly took Mazda CEO Takashi Yamanouchi’s assertion that he wants to see Mazda become a “premium” brand as evidence of managerial incompetence. How could the world’s last independent auto maker have the gall to gun for the Germans and upscale Japanese marques when they are currently a bit player in the global auto sector?
A reader tip pointed us to an issue with Mazda’s recent Skyactiv-D diesel engines in Australia. Apparently, the vehicle’s particulate filter may be the source of some engine oiling issues.
Despite embargoes keeping things under wraps, journalists found another way to break this bit of information early; by going to the display stand and looking at the information.
And that’s how we confirmed that the 2.2L Skyactiv diesel engine will power the 2014 Mazda6. With 173 horspower and 310 lb-ft, the oil burning Mazda should be an interesting alternative to the VW Passat TDI. And apparently, you can get it with a manual as well.
The words “Mazda” and “premium” will be forever linked with the stillborn Amati brand in the mind of car enthusiasts. Cancelled at the 11th hour, Amati was supposed to be Mazda’s luxury brand that would go head to head with Infiniti, Lexus and Acura. All we got out of it was the Millenia.
The 2014 Mazda6 wagon was shown in the buff today, causing the American contingent of journalists to spontaneously ejaculate in their pleated Wal-Mart trousers. Meanwhile, Europeans yawned with the sort of withering ennui that would have made Derrida blush. Predictions of the Mazda6 Skyactiv-D wagon 6MT selling 400,000 units have been running rampant today, mostly from “Top Auto Writers” who don’t own cars – let alone new cars.
Mazda has released official pictures of what will likely be the best-selling car in the United States, should it ever be sold here; the 2014 Mazda6 Wagon, which will be available with the new Skyactiv-D engine and a manual transmission.
Now that we’ve finally got real pictures of the 2014 Mazda6, powertrain details have emerged as well. For anyone who thought the 2.0L Skyactiv 4-cylinder was underpowered, there’s good news.
Mazda recently began production of the upcoming Mazda6 mid-size car, and a promotional photograph, seen above, reveals the look of the station wagon variant.
Mazda released first pictures and a teaser video of its brand-new Mazda 6, known in Japan as the Atenza. According to Automotive News [sub], the car will arrive stateside early next year as a 2014 model, equipped with a 2.5 liter Skyactiv engine. If you want to see and touch the car now, you have to go to Russia. (Read More…)