Archive for November, 2012

Diesel-powered Mazda6 going racing in Grand-Am Series

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 30th, 2012

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Diesel-powered Mazda6 Grand-Am Series racer - artist's rendering

The diesel version of the 2014 Mazda6 won’t be hitting North American showrooms until the middle of next year, but we won’t have to wait that long to see the car in action. Mazda will enter its midsize sedan in the new Grand-Am GX class with a Skyactiv-D clean diesel engine under the hood, and the car will make its racing debut at the Rolex 24 at Daytona on January 26. This will be the first time in the race’s 60-year history that a diesel-powered car has competed in the 24-hour race.

We first heard about the 2.2-liter turbocharged Skyactiv-D race engine back in June, but we now know it will used in the Mazda6 and we have a little bit better of an idea of power output. Developed in conjunction with SpeedSource, the clean diesel racer is said to produce more than 400 horsepower using many of the same components that will be found on the passenger version of the car.

The newly created GX class will race against the Daytona Prototypes and GT class cars, and its goal is to provide a race class for alternative fuels and technologies. In addition to the Mazda6, the Lotus Evora GX will also compete in the this class, which will be composed of 13 models from 12 automakers – including Audi, Hyundai, Ford and Scion.

Scroll down for Mazda’s press release, and be sure to check out the Grand-Am link for more information.

Continue reading Diesel-powered Mazda6 going racing in Grand-Am Series

Diesel-powered Mazda6 going racing in Grand-Am Series originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 30 Nov 2012 16:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda CX-5 Wins Car of the Year Japan

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 30th, 2012


2013 Mazda CX-9 gets all Kodo-fied

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 30th, 2012

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2013 Mazda CX-9

Introduced in 2007, the Mazda CX-9 is a seven-passenger full-size crossover sharing its platform with the Ford Edge. Now entering its seventh year in showrooms, Mazda has again treated it to a mild mid-cycle facelift (it was also updated for the 2010 model year).

Physically speaking, the front and rear fascia receive familiar Kodo design enhancements that better align the CUV with its siblings (namely, the CX-5 and Mazda6). Inside, the cabin is the automaker’s next-generation infotainment and audio package with a 5.8-inch touch-screen display, Bluetooth connectivity (audio and phone) and navigation (based on TomTom technology). Other audio enhancements include HD Radio, a Pandora interface and SMS audio receipt and delivery.

The 2013 Mazda CX-9 is in showrooms today. Scroll down for the official press blast.

Continue reading 2013 Mazda CX-9 gets all Kodo-fied

2013 Mazda CX-9 gets all Kodo-fied originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 29 Nov 2012 18:21:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda announces diesel engine for Mazda6, larger 2.5L for CX-5

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 29th, 2012

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2014 Mazda6 Skyactiv-D

As we reported earlier, Mazda is making some waves at the 2012 LA Auto Show by announcing the 2014 Mazda6 sedan will bow with a 2.2-liter clean-diesel engine under its hood in North America. The Skyactiv-D engine will show up on the option sheet after the Mazda6 sedan goes on sale in January with its 2.5-liter gasoline four-cylinder engine. The move makes Mazda the first Japanese manufacturer to offer a diesel engine in the mid-sized segment in the US (the Volkswagen Passat also offers one), and the company says the Skyactiv-D-powered Mazda6 will also benefit from the manufacturer’s brake energy regeneration system, i-Eloop.

The vehicle will be available with either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission, and Environmental Protection Agency fuel economy estimates are still pending, as are official power figures. Expect to hear more solid details once the the vehicle launches in January.

Meanwhile, the 2014 CX-5 will offer buyers a larger 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine in Touring and Grand Touring models, in addition to the current 2.0-liter four-cylinder offered across its entire range of trim levels. The new engine delivers 184 horsepower and 185 pound-feet of torque (up from 155 hp and 150 lb/ft for the 2.0-liter) and shuttles power to the ground via a six-speed automatic transmission. The EPA expects to see 25 mpg city and 32 mpg highway from front-wheel-drive models. Those numbers slip to 24 mpg city and 30 mpg highway on all-wheel-drive models.

Continue reading Mazda announces diesel engine for Mazda6, larger 2.5L for CX-5

Mazda announces diesel engine for Mazda6, larger 2.5L for CX-5 originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 29 Nov 2012 12:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda Production and Sales Results for October 2012 (Flash Report)

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 29th, 2012


LA display confirms diesel Mazda6 for US

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 28th, 2012

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Mazda Skyactiv-D placardCat’s out of the bag, kids – your first diesel-powered Mazda will be the 2014 Mazda6 sedan that arrives at dealers early next year. While scanning the floor here at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show, we spotted this 2.2-liter Skyactiv-D engine with an information card (pictured right) stating that it will be “arriving [in] 2013 on the all-new 2014 Mazda6.”

This is the same engine that we had a chance to sample in the Euro-spec 2013 Mazda CX-5, good for 173 horsepower and a magical 310 pound-feet of torque. Mazda has yet to release details about fuel economy, but the automaker for now just states that the numbers will be “excellent.”

Stay tuned for the full skinny as our LA Auto Show coverage continues.

LA display confirms diesel Mazda6 for US originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 28 Nov 2012 12:25:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 20th, 2012

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In what could have been my final time reviewing a current-generation Mazda MX-5 Miata, I’ll have to say it was like saying a bittersweet farewell to an old friend. You see, the third-generation Miata (NC) is my favorite iteration of the fun little roadster, and with the next Miata being co-developed with Alfa Romeo, I fear the car might lose some of the “jinba ittai” that has made it incredible track car for the last 23 years. If this was to be my last extended drive in the MX-5 Miata, I couldn’t have asked for a better send-off with it being a black-on-red tester with a soft top, manual transmission and the all-new Club trim level.

Perhaps as a tip of its proverbial hat to the car’s cult following among club racers, the 2013 model year for the MX-5 Miata sees the new Club model replace the Touring trim level in the middle of the car’s lineup. This new model should also be a welcomed sight for buyers who were late in snagging one of the 450 Miata Special Edition units that were sent to the US this year, and with a starting price of $26,705, it is substantially less than the Special Edition car. Like the Special Edition, though, the Club comes with black wheels and black door mirrors, and other key elements helped give the car an eye-catching look that got the car noticed almost everywhere I took it.

Driving Notes

  • The first thing I notice every time I drive a Miata is how balanced the car feels. A low curb weight (less than 2,500 pounds) and an almost perfectly even weight distribution make the car fun to drive in just about any conditions.
  • More fun, of course, is driving with the top down, and the Miata’s manual soft top has to be one of the simplest tops to operate in the history of convertibles. One central latch holds it in place, and it is light and hassle-free to raise and lower. You can even just reach back while at a stop light and raise the roof in about five seconds with one hand.
  • The six-speed manual transmission not only makes the Miata more engaging to drive, it also gives the car more power. Cars equipped with the automatic transmission are rated at 158 horsepower and those with the manual get 167 ponies under the hood, and while I’ve yet to drive an automatic Miata, at no point does the manual’s power feel insufficient. Even better, it is still decent on gas with fuel economy numbers 21 miles per gallon city and 28 highway; I had no problems hitting either number even with a healthy dose of spirited driving.
  • Aside from maybe a Tesla Roadster, there are few cars on the road that feel as small as the Miata. To some, this might be a good thing, but when the average SUV bumper is at face level and getting into and out of the car feels like it should be a part of the Insanity Workout, the Miata might not be an ideal primary vehicle.
  • The 2013 Miata Club represents a slight price increase ($875) over the 2012 Miata Touring, but what you get is a truly unique look without having to make any modifications yourself. The Gunmetal Black 17-inch wheels do a lot for the car, but the Club also gets black side stripes, black headlights, a front lip spoiler, rear diffuser, “Club” fender badges and chrome trunk brackets; inside, the instrument panel gets a new body-color-matching insert and red stitching to accent the black seats.
  • In today’s tech-savvy world, the Miata’s option list is devoid of many options available on most entry-level cars, but for a car that shouldn’t even have cupholders (especially on the manual-equipped models), the lack of technology inside the Miata makes the car feel even more raw and refreshing.

2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 20 Nov 2012 15:02:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda Launches All-New Atenza

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 20th, 2012


Mazda to build small Toyota in Mexico for US consumption

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 9th, 2012

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Mazda2 - White - front three-quarter view

Mazda and Toyota have announced a partnership to produce a new vehicle for our market. Mazda will build a subcompact economy car for North America based on its own Mazda2 at its soon-to-be-finished facility in Mexico for sale under the Toyota banner. The plant will build around 50,000 units per year once production begins in during the summer of 2015, leaving a further 90,000-unit capacity for Mazda vehicles.

Toyota has invested a proportional amount of funds in the plant’s production equipment to offset the cost, and hopes to have a more competitive North American lineup as a result of the collaboration. Mazda, meanwhile gains the benefit of spreading production costs over a greater number of vehicles per year.

The move certainly makes sense as Japanese manufacturers look to send more manufacturing out of Japan in the face of the stronger yen. In addition, last year’s earthquake and tsunami disasters underscored the need for a production network capable of flexibly responding to localized disasters, leaving many Japanese automakers with production delays and thin supply.

Mazda, meanwhile, has increasingly sought outside assistance with its manufacturing and engineering efforts as it looks to turn a profit again. The company recently courted Italian automaker Fiat in a tie-up that will see Mazda develop the platform for the next-generation MX-5 Miata and an Alfa Romeo roadster. As for the new partnership, while Toyota isn’t saying what this subcompact model will be called, we have to wonder if it’s a next-generation Yaris. Last we heard, the subcompact was slated to be built in France and imported into the US. Check the brief press releases from both automakers below for more information.

Continue reading Mazda to build small Toyota in Mexico for US consumption

Mazda to build small Toyota in Mexico for US consumption originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 09 Nov 2012 10:17:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda to Produce Toyota Vehicle at Mexico Plant [PDF format]

Published by Mazda Blogs on November 9th, 2012


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