Mazda has today unveiled the third in its series of extreme cars, a modified version of the high-performance Mazda3 Mazda Performance Series (MPS), at the 2007 Sydney Motorshow. Based on the top-selling Sports Pack luxury specification, the Mazda3 MPS Extreme has received engine, suspension and exhaust upgrades that improve the performance of the world’s quickest hot-hatch by about twenty per cent.
Modified by Mazda Australia Motorsport Manager, Allan Horsley, this extreme makeover involves a recalculation to the car’s Powertrain Control Module (PCM), allowing its standard 2.3-litre DISI turbo engine to generate a massive 210kW of power at 5300rpm and 425Nm of torque at 4400rpm. Other modifications to the Mazda3 MPS include a free-flowing two-inch exhaust system and a sports muffler that will give this extreme car a suitability throaty exhaust note.
The car’s suspension system has been redesigned by one of Australia’s best suspension tuners, Murray Coote, and it now sits 25mm lower than the standard model, giving the car a more aggressive, sporty stance. Coote, whose suspension systems sit beneath some of Australia’s leading rally and racing cars, configured a suspension package that maintains the sharply responsive handling of the Mazda3 MPS while complementing its new found power boost.The luxury hatch’s standard 18-inch alloy wheels have been upsized to 19-inch BBS Motorsport wheels with Dunlop Sports (225/35ZR19) complete with a MPS monogram on the wheel centerpiece.
Cosmetically, its aggressive extreme look is created by a True Red body colour with black stripes, mimicking the white stripes seen on Mazda’s Targa racing cars, and a black roof and rear spoiler. Other alternations include extended black wheel arches to accommodate its larger wheels and tinted windows.
Inside the Mazda3 MPS Extreme’s Sports Pack brings black leather trim is accentuated by exclusive red leather trimming. The red theme continues with red highlights in the dash, gear-shift knob and steering wheel and doors trimmings.
The car’s stopping power is generated through the state-of-art braking system found on the standard Mazda3 MPS. Its front disc brakes are 320mm in diameter and are ventilated, while the rear brakes are 280mm in diameter. An 8-9 inch tandem booster, along with a larger master cylinder, four-channel ABS, electronic brake distribution (EBD), electronic brake assist all contribute to the Mazda3 MPS Extreme’s effective braking performance.
Other safety features on the Mazda3 MPS Extreme include six airbags (dual front, front side and head protecting curtain airbags), a collapsible brake pedal and front and rear passenger seatbelt reminders as well as Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) with a Traction Control System (TCS).
“Creating an extreme version of our signature hot-hatch really is a case of making a great car even greater,” says Horsley, the brains behind Mazda Australia’s formidable RX-7 SP and MX-5 SP variants. “As proof of the standard car’s abilities it finished a stunning tenth outright at this year’s Targa Tasmania rally and first in the event’s Showroom category, needless to say the Mazda3 MPS Extreme lifts the performance bar on an already outstanding vehicle.”
Other extreme vehicles produced by Mazda Australia include a turbo-charged version of Mazda’s signature sports car, RX-8, in 2004 and a rally-ready Mazda2 in 2005.
“Mazda Australia, under the direction of Allan Horsley, has an excellent reputation of pushing the envelope in the design and modification of high-performance cars,” says Mazda Australia’s managing director Doug Dickson. “To build an extreme version of our signature hot-hatch is very fitting as it builds on the company’s racing heritage as well as celebrating the sales success of the current car.”
Also making its Australian premiere today was the next example of Mazda’s second generation Zoom-Zoom product, the all-new Mazda6, while the company’s first seven-seat crossover CX-9 made its first Sydney motor show appearance.