Mazda hasn’t sold a Mazdaspeed3/Mazda3 MPS hot hatch since 2013 and that’s a real shame given the enthusiastic reception that model got.
Sadly, the third-generation Mazda3 never went the MPS way and chances are the latest one won’t either. But who’s going to stop us from dreaming of one, especially when the fourth-gen Mazda3 looks so sporty in hatchback guise?
Photoshopper X-Tomi Design had a go at imagining what a 2019 Mazdaspeed3/Mazda3 MPS would look like and we’re glad he did it because the result is amazing.
The virtual tricks applied to turn the regular 2019 Mazda3 hatchback into a Mazdaspeed3 include a black roof (presumably made from carbon fiber), matching mirror caps and trim around the windows, as well as a more aggressive front bumper with additional intakes.
We can also spot sharper side sills and a set of larger multi-spoke wheels with red rims that fill the arches much better than the stock wheels — thanks in part to lower ride height. Other MPS-like details include the bigger brake calipers painted red, larger brake discs, and mesh grille.
Unfortunately, when Mazda unveiled the all-new 3 at the LA Auto Show last year, CEO Akira Marumoto said the hot hatch segment wasn’t a priority for the company, ruling out an MPS derivative. Nevertheless, there’s still a ray of hope that a go-fast Mazda3 might happen and that’s the fact that the company has confirmed the 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine fits in the engine bay of the new 3.
Now imagine a Mazdaspeed3 that looks like this motivated by the Mazda6’s Skyactiv-G 2.5T engine. With 250 horsepower and 310 lb-ft (420 Nm) of torque, it would be offering similar performance to the last Mazda3 MPS which had a 2.3-liter turbo-four that made 260 hp and 280 lb-ft (380 Nm) of torque. Add the i-Activ AWD system into the equation and this hypothesis becomes, sadly, too good to be true.