New models - Mazda - Mazda2 - 3-dr hatch range
Mazda hatches a new baby in record time
Mazda’s new three-door Mazda2 arrives fresh from Geneva with a price to scare rivals
7 May 2008
By PHILIP LORD
MAZDA Australia has released a three-door version of its Mazda2 just two months after its debut at the Geneva motor show in March. The new model undercuts its five-door sibling by $750 and gives Mazda a sharper entry point in the price-sensitive light-car market.
The new Mazda2 three-door, priced from $15,750, comes in under other light cars such as five-door-only models such as the Honda Jazz and Suzuki Swift, as well as its direct three-door rivals in Ford's Fiesta and Toyota's 1.5-litre Yaris YRS. The ‘boutique’ European brands, represented in this segment by the Citroen C3, Fiat Punto, Fiat 500 and Volkswagen Polo, are between $1240 and $7240 more expensive than the new Mazda.
While the Mazda2 three-door is Mazda’s cheapest car, it can’t compete with the entry-level Toyota Yaris YR 1.3-litre ($15,190) or Koreans such as the Hyundai Getz ($13,990), Holden Barina ($13,690) or Kia Rio ($14,990).
The light car segment is dominated by the Toyota Yaris, holding 20.6 per cent of the segment to the end of April - down five per cent over the same period last year. While the second-placed Hyundai Getz at 17 per cent is almost three per cent down over the 2007 figures, the third-placed Mazda2 five-door has shot up from 6.2 per cent in 2007 to 11.9 per cent to the end of April this year.
Mazda Australia says it expects to sell about 300 three-door models per month. It currently sells around 1200 five-door models, so if Mazda’s plans come to fruition, Mazda2 sales figures overall will challenge the Hyundai Getz for second-place honours in the light segment.
Two levels of specification are available with the three-door: the $15,750 Neo and the $17,960 Maxx. The top of the range Genki specification is only available with the five-door model.
As with the Mazda2 five-door, the new three-door is fitted with a 1.5-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine that develops 76kW at 6000rpm and 137Nm at 4000rpm. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, while buyers can elect to take a four-speed automatic for an additional $1650.
The fuel consumption average is identical to the five-door - 6.4L/100km on the ADR 81/01 cycle for the five-speed manual, and the four-speed auto figure is 6.8L/100km.
The new three-door shares the same external dimensions and wheelbase as the five-door, and the same interior dimensions. From there it gets down to details. The three-door is around 10kg lighter than the equivalent five-door, the front doors are 163mm longer than those on the five-door, and the three-door’s front seats are designed tilt and slide back in the one movement for entry to the rear seats. Mazda claims that the entry point to the rear seats is one of the widest in class.
The three-door's standard equipment list runs parallel to the five-door’s standard inclusions.
On the Neo, that means with ABS brakes with electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) and emergency brake assist (EBA), twin front airbags, seatbelts with pretensioners and load-limiters, anti-whiplash front seat head restraints, air-conditioning, power windows/mirrors and an MP3-compatible audio system with CD player and four speakers. Metallic or mica paint is a no-cost option for the Mazda2.
The Maxx three-door adds 15-inch alloy wheels, a rear roof spoiler and a six-disc in-dash CD player with steering wheel-mounted audio controls.
A safety pack option for both Neo and Maxx is available for $1100, and includes side (front) and curtain (front and rear) airbags and DSC stability/traction control.
Read more:Geneva: Mazda fast-tracks three-door Two
Mazda2 three-door coming
First drive: New Mazda2 shapes up for light fight
Read GoAuto's drive impressions of the Mazda2 five-door hatch range
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