The new Mazda 3 will be released in the month of April 2019 in France with two engines. The new SkyActiv-X will arrive in the second half of the year.
With the new Mazda 3, the japanese manufacturer presents a generation desired premium in all its aspects. To the point of almost eclipsing the prowess of the engineers of the brand and their Skayctiv-X, gasoline engine, potentially as efficient as a diesel.
Mazda revealed at the salon of Los Angeles 2018 its all-new generation Mazda 3, the car overall is in its 4th generation since 2003 and has sold over six million copies. It launches here at the same time a new technical platform, a technology engine new with the Skyactiv-X, a design of new generation but also a conception of the relationship between the vehicle and its owner thought of as a single and on several levels. This is done through the interfaces and the overall experience on board, desired… premium, the word is out.
And as soon as the first sentence of the press folder, the message is clear : Mazda wants to become a premium manufacturer. This holy Grail that is a dream many of its competitors, but that is one of the most complicated to accomplish, it is enough to see the time that it took to Audi before finding its current place. But most importantly, while a small revolution seems to be prepared under the hood (read our test of the prototype of the Mazda 3 with the Skyactiv-X), the manufacturer shall first, before the overall experience of conduct available to the driver and passengers rather than the performance in fuel consumption and emissions of its new block.
The premium as a leitmotif
The Mazda 3 embodies for the first time in the series the last evolution of the language Kodo design, seen on the concepts RX-Vision (2015), Kai (forerunner of this generation 3), and the spectacular Vision Cup which has had its hour of glory at the Festival International Automobile in the beginning of the year 2018. With such genes, it is not surprising that his appearance on the scene of NeueHouse Los Angeles, it puts in full view of journalists from around the world gathered for the occasion. In all simplicity, its design theme is summed up in a sentence-concept is typical of japanese designers : make it an object of universal desire… all with a theme quite daring : Because as Art or the car as a part
“Mazda wants to become a premium manufacturer“
Julien Montoussé, the head of the design studio of Irvine, California, us, explained how everything is in the play of shadow and light that is reflective on the side panels, very decorative, giving the impression of living matter.
Against the current blunt lines adopted by number of competitors, it does not show character lines, only subtle inflections, curves, rounded edges desired as changing with the light… The result is amazing, very round and subtle, with a general appearance râblée, almost compact in the absence of glass of the rear quarter while it is still a great car : 4,46 m long, 1.80 m wide and 1.44 m in height in version 5-door, who loses 11 mm in length but gains 25 mm in wheelbase. The version with 4 doors going to 4,66 m length. Side chest, this is mitigated because the 5-door is limited to a small 295 l (in regression) while the 4-door wins a total volume of 444 l.
We note also the exclusive color Polymetal Grey developed for this body and presented in the annex of the scene, or the minimalist work successfully at the level of the rear lights. The 4-door version is intended for more mature and elegant.
Life on board
In the cabin, the precept “less is more” (which could be translated by ” less is better “) applies and the designers have played on the minimalist maximum, which gives a particular atmosphere to the car. New grains of unique leather-have been developed and a leather dark red of the specified color is in the seats of some of the versions. Among the new ways to try to raise the level of perceived quality inside, there are coatings playing on the transparency on the console, or the very beautiful grilles in a brushed metal.
“Quality printing is in progress, but Audi is still far ahead“
Quality printing is in progress, that’s for sure, but Audi is still far ahead. The dashboard is designed very minimalist, with no major place reserved for a screen, a modest size of 8.8 inches. The system of info-entertainment, one of the weaknesses of Mazda current, operates here with a more refined, a control knob very neat (the screen is no longer touch), and a haptic feedback neat.
Beyond the design aspect, the Mazda 3 wants to be centered on the human character (Human Centric) in all its aspects, both in design, driving performance, with a soundproofing worked in detail, of the environmental performance of the treated and the level of quality is rising. Extensive program, which is not always reflected very clearly in the manner in which the work on the car is described – we look forward simply to try to make us an opinion. For example, one of the ideas developed by the engineers is to design a chassis able to respond to the most subtle impulses of the driver…
But how ? Every detail seems to have been redesigned, with, for example, a driving position more adjustable with + 20 mm adjustment telescopic in addition to on the column. The central console, the gear lever and the armrest have been moved to the front, while the seats are designed to keep the pelvis in place and the spine in the ideal position. The space is very comfortable, while at the rear, knee room is okay.
On the dynamic plan, the elements contributors are a cash more rigid, a rear suspension with torsion beam in place of the axle multi-link axle of the previous model (hopefully she doesn’t lose effectiveness the way), with the promise of improving the pleasure of driving for the driver and the passengers, in a feeling natural.
A single engine new generation
Under the hood, we find the petrol engine 2.0 Skyactiv-G 122 hp derived from the previous model will be the entry-range (1.5 is not intended in France) in a form a little review, at the level of the shape of the intake and pistons, injection and with the addition of a valve to adjust the cooling. Upon his arrival in April 2019, it is expected a base rate increase slightly to 24 100 € whereas the previous generation started at 23 600 €. At this rate, the equipment is on the rise also, with LED lights, digital counters on a 7-inch display), a head-up display projected, the emergency call, etc
You can also see the diesel 1.8 Skyactiv-D 115 hp, but the one that attracts all of the questions is, of course, the all – new 2.0 Skyactiv X SPCCI (Spark pop-up Controlled Compression Ignition) and its promise of a 20% gain in consumption in real conditions. To use this engine given to 181 hp at 6,000 rpm and 222 Nm at 4 000 r/min should give a better initial response, more torque, more linear and mounted in the free spins. A system of micro-hybridization in 24 volt named Mazda M Hybrid system is also part of the experience, both on the engines Skyactiv-X as the Skyactiv G, the time to offer a bit of boost and regenerate braking.
“The all-wheel drive system i-Activ AWD is announced with a 60% loss in the mechanical less“
At this stage, it is difficult to gauge the effectiveness of the whole. It will be a little bit patient, because the Skyactiv-X not going to happen to him in the second half of 2019. Also of note is the system of all-wheel-drive i-Activ AWD is announced with a 60% loss in the mechanical less, while the distribution active torque G-Vectoring Control Plus is part of the. The transmissions are all 6-speed manual as automatic.
Driver under surveillance
Finally, the aspects related to active safety passive are of course mentioned. We find, in all logic, a speed controller adaptive with function active in the caps and active monitoring of the queue. The more original, the driver is monitored by an infrared camera to detect any sign of fatigue, and thereby prevent further upstream in case of danger detected. There is also a function of Front Cross Traffic Alert, useful to the first of an intersection blind, which should operate in the manner of similar features on maneuvers in reverse. Finally, the new Mazda 3 is the first Mazda to integrate an airbag for knees of the series.
Balance sheet discovery new Mazda 3 (2019)
In the end, here’s a car ambitious in terms of design, embedded technology, positioning the same, a bet that one can only wish him to win.