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Posts Tagged ‘2014 mazda3’

Little Mazda’s Big Breakthrough Could Revolutionize Engine Manufacturing

Japanese maker uses flexibility to compensate for economies of scale.

by on Oct.11, 2013

The new Mazda3 delivers up too 41 mpg with its 2.0-liter SkyActiv engine.

With its highway fuel economy estimated at 41 mpg, the new Mazda3 is one of the most efficient models in the U.S. compact segment, the maker giving much of the credit to its new SkyActiv-G powertrain.

Mazda is quickly shifting most of its products to the new SkyActiv engine family and is even on track to become the first Japanese maker to offer a diesel in the U.S. market when the SkyActive-D powertrain debuts early next year.  But while the Japanese maker is quick to point out the various technologies that help the various SkyActiv engines deliver the seemingly conflicting benefits of better performance and improved mileage, the real breakthrough may be in the way that the new motors are being produced.

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Untethered from its long-running relationship with Ford Motor Co., Mazda has had to completely rethink its business strategy, particularly at the manufacturing level. And when it comes to building engines it abandoned a traditional approach that required massive investments and yielded little flexibility.


First Look: 2014 Mazda3

Some big news out of a small package.

by on Jun.26, 2013

The 2014 Mazda3 is the maker's newest model to use Skyactive technology and the Kodo design language.

It might not come as a complete surprise considering the number of recent leaks emerging from inside Mazda, but the first official images of the new Mazda3 nonetheless live up to expectations as the maker rolls out its latest Skyacti model.

The 2014 Mazda3 also becomes the latest in the Japanese maker’s line-up to adopt the new Kodo, or Soul of Motion, design language, following such recent entries as the Mazda6 sedan and CX-5 crossover. That includes the oversized grille – which conceals wind-cheating grille shutters — headlamps that flow back over the front fenders, and subtle sculpting of the side panels. The profile gives the hatchback an almost coupe-like curvaceousness.

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The 2014 Mazda3 adopts a 2.4-inch longer wheelbase than the outgoing model but it’s actually two inches shorter, nose-to-tail.  Meanwhile, those active grille shutters help deliver a claimed best-in-class drag coefficient of just 0.255.

The new hatchback reportedly weighs in about 200 pounds lighter than the old model, in part due to a focus on so-called lightweighting – one of the key elements in the maker’s Skyactiv strategy.  Nonetheless, by switching to high- and ultra-high-strength steel in key locations the new model also is 30% stiffer, Mazda notes.