Mazda3 To Set New Class Standards | Part Two

Mazda3 Sales

Mazda3 sales are expected to reach 8,000 units in 2004, growing to 12,000 in 2005. The hatchback will be the bigger seller with an anticipated 76 per cent of the mix, the saloon fulfilling the remaining 24 per cent.

Fleet sales will initially make up around 30 per cent of the total sales volume, increasing with the introduction of the 90ps Euro IV-compliant diesel in March 2005. The 1.6 TS petrol model is likely to be the most popular choice for company car drivers.

UK Pricing and Specification

The Mazda3 range offers great value for money priced from £10,650 to £15,500 on the road. Two body styles, a hatchback and a saloon, and four well specified grades – ‘S’, ‘TS’, ‘TS2’ and ‘Sport’ offer excellent choice for C-Segment buyers.

Three petrol Euro IV-compliant engines – a lively 1.4-litre 84ps, a highly balanced 1.6-litre 105ps and a more powerful 2.0-litre 150ps power the hatchback models which go on sale in the UK from January 2004, with the Euro IV-compliant 109ps diesel following in June and a 90ps Euro IV-compliant diesel in March 2005. Saloon models and Activematic – an electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission – are also available from June.

The Mazda3 S entry-level model has an on the road price of £10,650 for the 1.4 yet offers an exceptional level of standard safety and security features such as Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Emergency Brake Assist (EBA), dual stage driver and front passenger airbags plus front side airbags and a Category One alarm/immobiliser.

The top of the range 2.0-litre Sport model is priced at £15,495 with xenon headlamps, sports trim and body styling kit and interior finishes for a strong sporting look. Additional speakers, 17-inch alloy wheels and front fog lamps and a back lit dashboard, first seen on the Mazda RX-8 add to the appeal.

In addition, an "intelligent" auto light system improves headlight longevity and helps the driver better adapt to situations where light conditions on the road ahead can suddenly change. Combined with rain sensing wipers, the Mazda3 Sport derivatives offer a high level of standard specification.

continues... | Part Three
Published 18 January 2004 Melanie Carter

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