The next generation Mazda3 just broke cover at the Los Angeles International Auto Show, revealing Mazda’s plan for its design language. But most importantly, it heralds the introduction of the all-new Skyactiv-X engine.
First, the new design. Little did we know, when Mazda debuted the Mazda Kai Concept at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show, we were actually looking the 2019 Mazda3. Everything from the concept car’s exterior design, minus the exposed headlights and tail lights will make it to production. When I saw the original concept at the 2018 NYIAS in person, its smooth, minimalist, character line-less design stood out from the crowd. Park the new Mazda3 next to the Civic Type R – with all its facets, edges and intakes, it’ll look a though the Honda is still downloading. Still, if Mazda really wanted to go all the way with its glass-smooth “single motion” design concept, they wouldn’t have ruined the flow with such sharply contrasting flat-spotted wheel arch sections seen here.
The second act of the 2019 Mazda3 show is under the hood. There, the Skyactiv-X engine ingeniously combines the best characteristics of diesel with the best of a regular gas engine. The new engine runs on regular gas but, using a bowl-shaped piston, it’s able to get a higher compression ratio, igniting the fuel to combustion through pressure and heat rather than with just a spark plug alone. Mazda says this combination returns better fuel efficiency without sacrificing power. Don’t worry, though, if you’re not the experimental type, the 2019 Mazda3 will still come with old-fashioned 1.5-liter, 2.0-liter and 2.5-liter engines as well as a 1.8-liter diesel.
As Mazda continues its push to incorporate a more luxurious owner experience, the Mazda3 has clearly ben upgraded, but it’s also focused on attraacting new drivers. Though Mazda hasn’t announced MSRP for the new sedan lineup, hopefully, in a bid to attract new and younger drivers, the price tags stay where they are: low. The Skyactiv-X might land itself at the top of the line, but it’s safe to assume the most affordable 1.8-liter model won’t be far off from the current $18,000 tag.
Editor’s Note: This post was, in error, published earlier than a previously agreed-to embargo time. We’re proud to share the news but regret the mistake.
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