Spotted: first next-generation Mazda3 hatches land in New Zealand
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Ever since it was revealed at the Los Angeles Motor Show last November, we've been showing keen anticipation for the new Mazda3.
The current 'Three', even in its old age, is still one of the best drivers' cars in the c-segment biz, with a quality cabin and mature looks to boot. The new Mazda3 looks set to expand on those foundations with super-smooth styling, and an interesting range of engines (including the Japanese manufacturer's SKYACTIV-X engines).
And, by the looks, those waiting for one won't have to wait for much longer.
The first new Mazda3s have landed in New Zealand, as alerted to us by a reader that spotted a pair of new hatchbacks on the back of a trailer in Auckland City over the weekend.
Pricing and spec for the 2019 Mazda3 hasn't been confirmed yet for New Zealand, but there's a chance we might follow Australia's lead. It's been confirmed over the ditch that they will get a variant of the 2.0-litre SKYACTIV-G engine that makes 114kW of power at 6000rpm and 200Nm of torque at 4000rpm.
They will also get a revised version of the 2.5-litre engine that powers the current SP25 model, which gets a mild 1kW and 2Nm bump, for a total of 139kW and 252Nm.
Time will tell whether these engines are reflected in New Zealand's line-up, but odds are that they will be. More interesting will be the SKYACTIV-X engine, which will likely emerge further down the pipeline.
Output from said engine has yet to be confirmed, but overseas leaks suggest that the European-market version will make 133kW and 222Nm — all while utilizing Mazda's next-gen Spark Controlled Ignition Technology to produce diesel-levels of efficiency from a petrol engine.
With cars landing on our shores, it's only a matter of time before pricing and line-up will be confirmed. We'll keep our eyes peeled.