Mazda’s first production model with the SkyActiv-X engine

After almost six years on the market, the current-generation Mazda3 will retire to make way for a redesigned model. The Japanese firm confirmed the new Mazda3 will make its global debut at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show and released a new teaser of the car.

Actually, Mazda previewed two vehicles, as the photo includes images of both the sedan and hatchback versions. Not much can be seen in the photo, but it gives us a glimpse of the sedan’s roof and the hatchback’s rear end.

The Design

2017 Mazda Kai Exterior
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10-30 percent more torque
Note: 2017 Mazda Kai concept pictured here.
The rear end looks pretty close to the Kai concept car.

The four-door model will continue to feature a coupe-style roof and a rather short deck lid, typical to notchback cars. Mazda made some changes to the rear window, which no longer includes a small quarter window toward the rear frame. It also seems to have a simpler, cleaner, and more elegant beltline.

As for the hatchback, the rear end sports a more aggressive design. The tailgate has a heavily raked rear window and a bigger spoiler, while the taillights are thinner. No shots of the front fascia yet, but it should borrow some cues from the Kai concept car. The rear end actually looks pretty close to the show car, so don’t be surprised is the Mazda3 shows up with an aggressive front end.

New SkyActiv-X Technology

2018 Mazda3 Grand Touring- Driven
- image 763095
Note: 2018 Mazda3 pictured here.
Mazda claims that cars equipped with this engine will be 20 to 30 percent more efficient.

Arguably the biggest highlight is Mazda’s new SkyActiv-X engine, which promises diesel-like fuel economy with the cleaner emissions of gasoline units. It uses very high compression to ignite a mixture of fuel and air, just like in a diesel, instead of a spark plug. However, the engine is equipped with a spark plug and will use it to ignite if ambient temperatures are too low and the unit is subject to a cold start.

When the car is cruising or during low-load situations in busy traffic, the SkyActiv-X will act like a diesel. Mazda claims that cars equipped with this mill will be 20 to 30 percent more efficient, while pre-production testing revealed a combined fuel economy of almost 40 mpg (with an automatic transmission). Unfortunately, Mazda hasn’t released much info as of this writing.

The Mazda3 will be the first to feature this engine, but the four-cylinder will make it into other vehicles too in the near future.

Further Reading

Next-Gen 2019 Mazda3 Headed for L.A. Debut Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
- image 689551

Read our speculative review on the 2019 Mazda3.

2018 Mazda3 Grand Touring- Driven
- image 763135

Read our full review on the 2018 Mazda3.

2017 Mazda Kai Exterior
- image 740424
Aggressive front end

Read our full review on the 2017 Mazda Kai concept.

Mazda Motor Corporation announced today that the all-new Mazda3 will make its world premiere at the Los Angeles Auto Show, open to the public Nov. 30 through Dec. 9.1

The all-new Mazda3 adopts a more mature interpretation of Kodo design that embodies the essence of Japanese aesthetics. Meanwhile, fundamental performance attributes have been raised to a new level. Next-generation Skyactiv-Vehicle Architecture enables people to make the most of their natural sense of balance and the latest Skyactiv engines offer responsive control of vehicle speed in any driving situation.

The arrival of all-new Mazda3 marks the beginning of a whole new generation of Mazda cars that will deliver new dimensions of driving pleasure to customers around the world.

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