At the Paris Auto Show, Mazda launched its new contender in the European D-segment that accounts for a little over 6.2 percent of the total passenger car market in the guise of the Mazda6 sedan and wagon models.
The Japanese carmaker says that both versions embody “the purest adaption yet” of its corporate “KODO – Soul of Motion” design philosophy, with the signature “wing” grille, flowing lines and a coupe-like roofline that has been moved back by 100mm giving the mid-size model a more dynamic character.
The 2,830 mm long wheelbase of the sedan promises ample space in the cabin, but surprisingly, the Wagon has a smaller wheelbase at 2,750mm and is also shorter at 4,800mm (the saloon is 4,865mm long, always according to Mazda).
As far as boot capacity is concerned, with the rear seats in their position, the wagon takes the lead at 522lt versus the sedan's 489lt.
The new Mazda6 is built around a lighter but more rigid chassis with front strut and multi-link rear suspension that the company says is tuned for "agility, high-speed stability and a comfortable ride".
European buyers can choose between three petrol and two diesel-powered versions, all of which belong to the new, efficient Skyactiv.
The petrol Skyactiv-G range include a 2.0-liter in 143Hp and 162Hp versions (145PS and 165PS) and an 189HP (192PS) 2.5-liter unit The Skyactiv-D 2.2 diesel is also available in two variants, with 147Hp and 173 Hp (150PS and 175 PS) respectively.
Sales in Europe will begin at the end of 2012 and the new Mazda6 will be available with features such as a radar cruise control, automatic braking in order to avoid a collision both at low and high speeds and a lane departure warning system, depending on the trim model.
In North America, the new Mazda6 will go on sale early next year offered exclusively with a sedan body style and the 189hp 2.5-liter Skyactiv G gasoline engine. The 2.2-liter turbo diesel may also be added to the range down the line.
By Andrew Tsaousis