Mazda: 40MPG Highway Norm
Mazda combines performance with efficiency.
Web2Carz Contributing Writer
Published: October 15th, 2011
Only a few years ago, a 40MPG highway rating was a goal to be accomplished. Today, it is a growing prerequisite for the compact class. Mazda is looking to take on Hyundai in the 2012 model-year with its SkyActiv theme, bringing us a new-generation of engine and transmission design that places an emphasis on efficiency, environmental friendliness, and safety.
40 MPG may be the benchmark, but consumers increasingly don't want fuel efficiency to rob away performance. Mazda has balanced fuel economy with their 'Zoom-Zoom' appeal in their new Sky-G 2.0-liter engine--which increases fuel conservation by 20 percent while still producing 148-horsepower at 135 lb-ft torque. The 2012 Mazda3 will get an average 28 MPG for city driving.
The new 6-speed SkyActiv Automatic Transmission was designed to bring together the benefits of both Dual-Clutch and CVT systems. Equipped with a lock-up torque converter, the new SkyActive trans will lock up the torque converter's turbine to the inner impeller in order to boost fuel economy by nearly 7 percent.
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Mazda has toned down the fascia on the Mazda3, and that smiling bumper that we all could recognize instantly now looks like a slight grin. In addition to the 40 MPG perk, drivers will get standard keyless entry, bluetooth hands-free phone and audio, and steering-wheel mounted audio and cruise controls.
The new 2012 Mazda3 with the brand new fuel-efficient SkyActive engine and drivetrain systems can be had for around $19,800 MSRP. Trims include a 4-door and 5-door hatch in either Standard, Grand Touring, and S Grand Touring models. Premium trims come with heated mirrors and seats and an upgraded Bose® Centerpoint® Surround Sound System with AudioPilot®. A Fully loaded Mazda3 will set you back $25,000 MSRP, respectively.