The mainstream compact car segment is the perfect example of the infamous “driving appliance.” The Corolla and Civic sell in enormous volume because they are the middle-of-the-road “white bread” option, not in-spite of the vanilla. Unlike many in the automotive press, I don’t find anything wrong with that. In fact, I love me some Wonder Bread. But sometimes you feel like a pumpernickel, and that’s where the 2014 Mazda3 comes in. Mazda was so excited about their new loaf that they invited me to spend the day with them in San Diego. Want to know if you should spend 5+ years with one? Click through the jump.
Citing what they say is a need ”to accommodate final emissions testing and certification,” Mazda confirmed that the U.S. launch of the diesel powered Mazda6 will be delayed from the end of this year until late April 2014.
Whenever I talk to car shoppers, the Mazda6 comes up. No, it’s not because people are confused if it’s a “Mazda 6″ or a “Mazda6″ or a “Mazda Mazda6.” Although, it does top the Land Rover Range Rover Sport Autobiography for the strangest name on the market. (I prefer to call it a Mazda6.) The reason Mazda’s mid-sized sedan comes up, is because it seems to be a car often shopped, but rarely purchased. In June, it scored 14th in sales for the segment. Surprised? I was. Even the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Avenger (9th and 12th place) outsold it by a wide margin. The low sales numbers piqued my interest enough that I hit Mazda up for a cherry red model to see why.
The spyshots were right all along. This is the hatch version of the 2015 Mazda3. We’ll get an official look at the car today at 2:30 PM EST, along with technical details. Europe will get 1.5L and 2.0L gasoline SKYACTIV motors making 99, 118 and 163 horsepower respectively. Expect the 2.0 to make it here, along with the 2.5L engine in the CX-5 and Mazda6. Europe will also get the 2.2L diesel used in the 6, which would be a real treat, and a nice rival to the Golf TDI. No weight figures have been announced, but the new 3 should be a good deal lighter than the current model. No word on a sedan model either.
EDIT: The North America spec 2.0L makes 155 horsepower. No word on a North American diesel. The i-ELOOP regen braking/capacitor system will power the car’s entire electronics, as well as an all new HUD system. Production will take place first in Japan, then in Mexico starting in Spring, 2014. Sales start in September. Sedan to debut in 2 weeks. Weight should be down by a couple hundred pounds, wheelbase is up 2.4 inches while overall length is down by 1.8 inches.
Mazda, the favorite car brand of enthusiasts that few seem to actually buy, looks set to become profitable for the first time in five years.
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.
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.
Mazda is remedying the biggest complain regarding its wonderful CX-5 crossover; the lack of power. Starting next year, the 2014 CX-5 can be ordered with the new 2.5L Skyactiv engine offered in the new Mazda6.
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 Mazda/Alfa Romeo sports car collaboration was best described by one industry reporter as “the first slow dance, where they leave room for Jesus”. Now it looks like Fiat is definitely trying to cop a feel.
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.