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High Quality, Intuitive Interior
The interior design was no
less re-imagined than the vehicle's exterior, and was developed with the end
goals of a more inviting cabin and higher quality feel. Beginning with the
instrument panel - the largest landscape within the cabin - black is now used
throughout the center stack and shift gate to provide an even bolder look. Also,
silver-colored, satin-polished details were added to areas frequently operated
by consumers, such as the outer rings of the three climate-control dial switches
and the audio control panel, as well as the ventilation louvers on the center
panel. In addition to creating a feeling of higher refinement, the
silver-on-black color scheme further accentuates the location of these common
controls and switches, which increases legibility and lessens the amount of time
drivers take their eyes off the road, consequently reducing operating errors.
The Multi Information Display (MID) and liquid crystal display (LCD) also
received color adjustments, changing from the red text and graphics of the
current model to an easier-to-read white. On the 2012 MAZDASPEED3, the silver
touches also replace the current red-accented graphics and the silver decoration
atop the shift knob has been removed. The entire shift knob on the MAZDASPEED3
is now leather-wrapped. The parking brake knob also is wrapped in genuine
leather, establishing a unified coordination that lends the cockpit an even
sportier air and gives the MAZDASPEED3 interior additional sophistication.
The sporty twin-meter design of the instrument cluster itself remains
unchanged but is highlighted with new, continuous-lit white graphic meters,
which provide better readability, even in bright daylight hours. Backlight
colors also differ depending on the model: dynamic gray for standard and high
trim levels and a red gradation for the MAZDASPEED3. Skyactiv-equipped vehicles
will feature a blue gradation backlight as well as white-graphic meter panels.
Also offered will be a stylish shift knob adorned by satin-polish plating on the
lower section and a silver ring-surrounded Skyactiv-logoed plate on the upper
Proving that even on a mid-cycle refresh, engineers truly sweat the
details, the amount of the shift knob head's forward projection on Skyactiv-Drive
equipped models has been increased by nearly 0.16 inches over the current model,
resulting in a better grip feel and smoother shifts in both front-aft and
Improved visual designs also have found their way
into the comfortable, snug seats and create a stronger impression of
dimensionality with new three-dimensional fabric patterns. On the black seats of
non-leather models, gray cross-threads have been added to enhance contrast and
create a feeling of casual comfort. Dune-colored seats receive both bright and
dark-colored cross-threads to create a calm, mature interior atmosphere. Higher
trim levels (Touring and Grand Touring) receive a different three-dimensional
seat fabric pattern to create a richer expression of quality on the black
New Engine for Mazda3 5-Door
In addition to the
Mazda3's current MZR 2.0-liter dual-overhead-cam 16-valve four-cylinder engine
is the all-new high-efficiency direct-injection Skyactiv-G 2.0-liter gasoline
engine. Mated to a standard Skyactiv-MT six-speed manual transmission or
optional Skyactiv-Drive six-speed automatic transmission, Skyactiv will be
available in either the sedan or hatchback models.
The 2012 Mazda3
achieves a high compression ratio of 12.0:1 and delivers 155 horsepower at 6,000
rpm and 148 lb-ft of torque at 4,100 rpm.
Also, previously only available
with the MZR 2.5-liter engine, the Mazda3 five-door hatchback model will now be
offered in the U.S. with the Skyactiv-G 2.0-liter gasoline engine. This Mazda3
hatchback is estimated to deliver 27 city/38 highway (Skyactiv-MT) and 28
city/38 highway (Skyactiv-Drive AT).
Also available on the 2012 Mazda3 is
the highly-acclaimed Mazda MZR 2.5-liter engine. Providing 167 hp at 6,000 rpm
and 168 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm, the MZR 2.5-liter engine is available with
a six-speed manual transmission or a five-speed electronically-controlled
automatic with manual shift control. The MZR 2.5-liter engine achieves EPA
figures of 20 city and 28 highway with a manual transmission and 22 city and 29
highway with the automatic.
Mazda3 has earned a solid reputation for its sporty and exciting handling that
delivers an equally pleasurable driving feel which emphasizes consistency
between the driver's expectations and the car's response. Inheriting this
pedigree, the refreshed 2012 Mazda3 not only improves upon this sense of oneness
between driver and vehicle, but also offers a comfortable driving experience
that all passengers can feel and enjoy in various driving scenarios.
Referred to as Toitsukan, this linear and consistent feel is more specifically
about establishing smooth transitions between acceleration, lateral and
deceleration G forces in response to the basic aspects of driving, turning and
stopping. This idea is not simply about delivering sharp response to accelerator
and steering operations for a sporty ride, but instead delivering a consistent
linear feeling of the car's every response to control operations of the driver.
Toitsukan extends to making driving pleasurable and instilling drivers with the
sensation of excitement and control while at the same time offering passengers a
comfortable ride created by smooth and stable car movement.
efforts were made to ensure this Toitsukan is achieved throughout the car's
features, which also resulted in a stronger body, include the adoption of the
Electro-Hydraulic Power Assist Steering (EHPAS) system and optimized tuning of
the front and rear dampers. Mazda's EHPAS system employs a new setting for pump
flow characteristics that enables easier handling at slow speeds while also
achieving more positive feedback and a better feeling for the road at mid-range
through to high speeds. The overall result when compared to the current model is
lighter, more nimble steering feel.
Put simply: turn the wheel a little,
get a little change of direction; turn the wheel a lot, get a lot of change of
direction. It seems so easy, but so few manufacturers seem to be able to achieve
this level of intuition.
Mazda Mazda3: Photo Gallery, Review (1/2) and Specifications