Kodo design flows on to the third-gen Mazda3
Mazda has just taken the cover off the all-new 2014 Mazda3 on an event in Manhattan. Other launch events were also concurrently held in Melbourne, Istanbul, St. Petersburg and London. The unveiling was also shown online via XBOX Live.
The third generation Mazda3 is now lower and leaner than its predecessor with Kodo's design language flowing from panel to panel up to the provoking tail lamps. The 2014 model sits on a 2700mm wheelbase, 45mm shorter in length at 4460mm with a height of 1455mm and a width of 1796mm. The interior is now more comfortable with 985mm rear legroom and a shoulder room on the front and rear at 1453mm and 1382mm, respectively.
The interior was redesigned to be a more driver-oriented cockpit, driver distractions are also minimized by the repositioned A-pillars that was moved rearwards to offer a greater range of vision for the driver.
"With more than 3.5 million vehicles sold globally, the Mazda3 is the brand’s best-selling and most recognizable name plate, and its redesign for 2014 shows just how much attention to detail and care we put into this important vehicle," said Jim O’Sullivan, president and CEO, MNAO.
One of the all-new feature is Mazda's next-generation Human-Machine Interface (HMI) system that is based on the heads-up cockpit concept that aims to help drivers maintain proper posture, and focus more on the road ahead even while handling larger amounts of information. Another new feature is the Active Driving Display that's a clear pop-up panel that display vehicle speed, navigation directions, and other important driving information.
Mazda's infotainment was overhauled as well, it now has a new operating system that is voice-controlled and is equipped with a text-to-voice technology that can read out emails and sms.
The 2014 Mazda3 was also reengineered to take in the SkyActiv technologies that starts with the i-ELOOP that features an active grille shutter that automatically opens and closes depending in the driving conditions to improve aerodynamic performance and fuel economy. Another feature is the Brake Energy Regeneration system that employs a capacitor that stores electricity generated during the vehicle's deceleration. Energy stored will be used to reduce the drag created by the alternator.
Globally, the 2014 Mazda3 will be offered with engine choices that ranges from 1.5 to 2.5-liter SkyActiv-G engine as well as a SkyActiv-D 2.2-liter diesel engine. With transmission options available in a SkyActiv-MT six-speed manual or a SkyActiv-Drive six-speed automatic.
Safety is taken care of by Mazda's proactive system called i-Activsense that's comprised of:
- High Beam Control (HBC) that automatically switches the headlights between high and low beams.
- Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM) that detects object located in the vehicle's blind spot areas and issues a visual alert on the car's outside mirrors to warn the driver; an audible warning will be made by the car if the turn signal is activated.
- Lane Departure Warning system (LDWS) monitors lane markings on the road and issues a warning to the driver if it predicts that the vehicle is departing from its lane.
- Forward Obstruction Warning (FOW) monitors the vehicle ahead and issues both audible and visual alerts to help the driver avoid collision. The FOW is only activated when the vehicle is travelling between speeds of 9 and 92 mph.
- Smart City Brake Support (SCBS) issues a warning when the car is in a high risk for collision with an object ahead, if the warning is ignored, the system will activate an automatic braking function. THis feature is active only on speeds of less than 19 mph.
- Mazda Radar Cruise Control (MRCC) is a cruise control system that detects the car ahead and automatically adjusts speed to maintain a safe distance from it.