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First look: Sassou is Mazda's light car future

Frugal: Mazda concept features a 1.0-litre turbo triple with idle-stop function.

Mazda reveals its light car future in the Sassou concept due to appear at Frankfurt

Mazda logo6 Sep 2005

MAZDA will unveil a small, lightweight, three-door hatchback concept dubbed Sassou at next week's Frankfurt motor show.

Deriving its name from a Japanese term meaning positive state of mind, the angular, wide-mouthed Sassou (pronounced "saso") was created at Mazda’s design centre in Frankfurt and points to where the Japanese manufacturer is heading with its next-generation light car.

It uses a 1.0-litre three-cylinder direct-injection turbocharged engine with an idle-stop feature, and was conceived as a "lightweight, fuel-efficient, urban vehicle for young, first-car buyers that can make city driving zoom-zoom, fun and highly practical".

22 center image The interior features a USB stick as a key and an interface port for programming the hard disc drive conceived for the concept.

It also has a unique "morphing" back seating system that uses compressed air to alter the seat configuration (one big armchair for a single passenger or smaller seats for two passengers), and a flat-fold seating arrangement that increases the available storage space.

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