Mazda Expands & Updates Mazda 3 Range
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(Left to right) The updated 3 hatch (blue), the
new 3 MPS (red) and the updated 3 sedan (grey).
on this page,
1st March, 2006
Mazda Motor Corp has taken the wraps off an updated and expanded Mazda 3 range, at the Geneva Motor Show, with the all-new Mazda 3 MPS taking its place as the flagship of the line up.
Mazda 3 MPS becomes the second Mazda Performance Series model following the launch of the Mazda 6 MPS last year.
The Mazda 3 MPS has a distinctly MPS design that combines a refined, yet strong and sporty road presence that is carried over into the interior with a look and feel that evolves Mazda craftsmanship and quality even further.
Powered by Mazda’s 2.3-litre direct injection, spark ignition engine the front drive Mazda 3 MPS boasts more than 184 kW at 5,400 rpm and 380 Nm of torque at 3,000 rpm.
Installed in a lightweight and compact body, the engine propels Mazda 3 MPS to a top speed of 250 km/h, and from 0 to 100 km/h in 6.1 seconds. These figures make the Mazda 3 MPS one of the world’s most powerful front-drive sports compacts.
To handle this level of performance, torque characteristics are carefully controlled to improve driveability.
Torque delivery from first through fourth gears are optimised to deliver appropriate drive power from take off. Torque control is also linked to the steering angle, and the stiffness of the left and right drive shafts is balanced with the angles optimised to control torque steer.
A newly-developed limited slip differential is also adopted to provide ample torque to the inner wheel during hard cornering for smooth, predictable driving.
The body, suspension and brakes are specially tuned as part of the vehicle’s all-round optimisation. The result is outstanding performance and agile handling that deliver high levels of driving pleasure.
The new Mazda 3 MPS employs the six-speed manual transmission introduced with the Mazda 6 MPS that provides the driver with the pleasure of having full control over the vehicle’s high power, while contributing to a quiet ride and better fuel economy.
Since its launch in 2003, Mazda 3 has become Mazda’s best-selling vehicle and the company has had to increase production to meet global demand.
To further enhance its global popularity, Mazda has refreshed its compact star’s line-up in a 2006 version with enhanced design and comfort, optimised performance and even higher levels of interior quality feel.
New exterior enhancements to both the modern and elegant sedan and the sporty hatchback further support a standard Mazda 3 line up with two distinct models for customers to choose from.
The Mazda 3’s MZR 2.0-litre engine now features sequential valve timing and an electronic throttle, boosting power and torque, while the 2.3-litre engine that powers the popular SP23 models also gets an electronic throttle.
A six speed manual or five-speed automatic will be offered on the SP23 sedan and hatch.
The Mazda 3’s class-leading dynamics have been further improved. Changes include upgraded damper performance and improved aerodynamics for even better handling, stability and driving fun.
Overall comfort has also been significantly upgraded with more insulation against road noise, revised tyres and reduced suspension vibration.
The Mazda 3 MPS and the updated Mazda 3 range will arrive in Australia during the second half of this year. Specification and pricing will be confirmed at launch time.
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