January 2003 has been a busy month for Mazda with two new models announced, European production starting in Valencia, Spain, and UK sales comfortably exceeding target for the month by 3% and a sales increase of 32.8% over 2002 against a market which is down by 9%.

As 2003 proceeds Mazda will introduce three models into the UK market. Mazda's new small car, the Mazda2 will go on sale on 20 March followed by the long awaited Mazda RX-8 in July. The RX-8 sees the return of the unique rotary engine to the UK in a unique sports coupe. The final introduction in a busy year for Mazda will be the replacement of the Mazda 323 which will be announced at the end of the year.

Dealer recruitment is also a priority for 2003, with 12 dealers appointed in 2002. Mazda's objective for 2003 is to appoint a further 18 dealers to bring the total number to 146 by the end of the year.

Mazda RX-8 Pricing Announced

The unique Mazda RX-8 sports coupe will go on sale in the UK at the end of July offering two power options. Mazda announced pricing for the RX-8 in January. Mazda will open its order book via an on-line pre-order facility for the RX-8 at the end of February.

In line with Mazda's philosophy of offering outstanding value in cars that are fun to drive, the UK pricing of the Mazda RX-8 is extremely attractive. The low power version – 192PS – is priced at just £19,995 and the high power – 240PS – £21,995.

Already there is considerable demand for the Mazda RX-8 and with limited production available to the UK market and its highly attractive pricing, Mazda has established an on-line pre-ordering facility which will enable customers to get to the front of the queue. The on-line system will be available from late February.

To pre-order a Mazda RX-8 customers need to access the secure web site www.mazdaRX8.co.uk where they can place a deposit of £1,000 via credit card, thus securing a vehicle, which will then be allocated to the dealer of their choice.

Mazda2 Price And Specification Announced

With one in every three cars purchased in the UK being in the super-mini category Mazda had to develop a car to replace the Mazda121 and Demio that would challenge the class leaders in terms of specification, driving dynamics, price and handling.

With this newly developed model, Mazda has entered the second phase of its model renewal programme. With the new brand design, high levels of functionality and intelligent technology, the compact Mazda2 follows the success of the Mazda6. It is available with four engine options 1.25, 1.4, 1.6 petrol and 1.4 diesel with four specification levels, S, TS, TS2 and Sport. The Mazda2 goes on sale in the UK at the end of March.

Price - Petrol
Mazda2 1.25 S £8,760
Mazda2 1.4 TS £9,995
Mazda2 1.4 TS2 £10,995
Mazda2 1.6 Sport £11,995
Price - Diesel
Mazda2 1.4 S £9,695
Mazda2 1.4 TS £10,495
Mazda2 1.4 TS2 £11,495
Mazda Dealers

At acquisition of the Mazda business in 2001 there were a number of open points in the UK where there was no Mazda representation. During 2002, 22 new dealers were signed up; the target for 2003 is to recruit another 18 new dealers at critical open points in the UK.

During January Mazda approved a further two new dealers and now has a total of 10 approved dealers awaiting start-up. The appointment of Colliers Mazda in North Birmingham brings the total number of dealers up to 118 full dealers and six satellite dealers.

Published : 16/02/03 Author : Melanie Carter

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