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Mazda Aus keen for hot Mazda3, CX-30

Forced in(tro)duction: Mazda Australia is hoping the turbocharged Mazda3 (left) and CX-30 (below) can be developed in RHD.

Hi-po, turbocharged Mazda3, CX-30 on Mazda Australia’s radar pending RHD production

23 Mar 2021

MAZDA Australia has reiterated its desire for more high-performance models in its local line-up, saying it is constantly putting its hand up for the hot Mazda3 and CX-30 2.5 Turbo pair for an introduction Down Under.


The sticking point for the Japanese car-maker is that the performance pair are currently only manufactured in left-hand drive for the North American market.


Speaking to GoAuto, Mazda Australia marketing director Alastair Doak said the brand was constantly putting its hand up for the performance variants.


“We’re very jealous as it’s not available in right-hand drive at this point, and that’s just a resource/volume thing,” he said.


“So we keep asking and we will continue to keep asking. It’s not ruled entirely out but it’s not ruled in, it’s just the case of every time we see the program managers that can influence the decisions we keep going, ‘remember, remember’, so we’ll keep doing that.”


While Mazda’s home market is right-hand drive, Mr Doak explained that performance iterations of its small hatch and SUV duo would not achieve the popularity required in Japan required for RHD production.


“Those kind of cars don’t really sell in Japan so the volume’s not there, and obviously Europe have got their targets around CO2 so when you take all that out, right-hand drive (is a tough proposition),” he said.


“And even in this market if you did 200 a month you’d be doing well, so for that kind of car it’s a difficult one to get the volume to justify it but we’ll keep asking.”


For reference, and as the name suggests, the 2.5 Turbo pair employ the same 2.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine as found in the likes of the CX-9, CX-5 and Mazda6, producing an uprated 186kW/434Nm when running on premium unleaded fuel.


When running on standard unleaded, the outputs drop to the standard 170kW/420Nm as found on the other models.


Those peak outputs place the 2.5 Turbo 47kW clear of the naturally aspirated 2.5-litre engine in the Mazda3 and CX-30, while its healthy 434Nm torque figure clearly outmuscles the atmo engine by a considerable 182Nm.


Its outputs would put the Mazda3 in hot hatch territory for the first time since the MPS version was retired in 2013, and would do battle with the likes of the Volkswagen Golf GTI and Ford Focus ST.


A hot version of the CX-30 meanwhile would wade into battle against a smaller crop of hot SUVs such as the incoming Hyundai Kona N and Volkswagen T-Roc R, albeit with a less overt performance bent.


Both models send power to all four wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission.


Through the first two months of the year, Mazda Australia has sold 16,830 combined vehicles, making for a strong 20.9 per cent improvement over the same period last year.

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