The facelifted Mazda 3, also known as the Axela was recently launched in Japan. The debut of the facelifted model brough along a pair of new diesel engines, namely the SkyActiv-D 1.5 and SkyActiv-D 2.2.
To further enhance the Jinba-ittai appeal, the updated Mazda 3 now gets G-Vectoring Control, first of the SKYACTIV VEHICLE DYNAMICS technologies that work with the engine, transmission, chassis and body to optimize handling. In addition to that, the diesel variant of the Mazda 3 gets Natural Sound Frequency Control, aimed to reduce diesel engine clattering.
Visually, the updated Mazda 3 gets a slightly reshaped front grille, as well as a re-positioned Mazda logo and shorter chrome inserts. The chrome inserts now ends at the headlights, which previously was positioned over the headlights. The bottom half of the facelifted Mazda 3 gets reworked turning lights with a slimmer profile plus a lower air vent.
G-Vectoring Control works by controlling engine torque in response to steering inputs in order to provide integrated control of lateral and longitudinal acceleration forces. This in turn optimizes vertical load on each wheel which allows the vehicle to turn smoother.
Furthermore, the updated 3 gets a high-precision DE boost control in the diesel variants. The boost control here controls boost and produces more precise fuel injection, thereby controlling engine torque response more precisely. Engineers at Mazda also studied the relation between pressure waves (main cause of diesel clattering) and the resonant frequency of parts to further reduce diesel clattering.
As mentioned earlier, the new Mazda 3 gets a pair of diesel engines. Models fitted with the SkyActiv-D 2.2 can be had with i-Activ AWD, while the SkyActiv-D 1.5 is strictly 2WD.
Inside, the Active Driving Display now gets full color with higher brightness, definition and contrast, making the display easier to read. Drivers can now enjoy the 10-way power seat, while can now save the angle, brightness and content settings of the Active Driving Displaythe seat memory function. Furthermore, the facelifted 3 gets a new steering wheel with better ergonomics.
Safety wise, the improved Mazda 3 gets Mazda’s first Traffic Sign Recognition System (TSR). The system works by utilizing a forward-sensing camera that picks up speed limit signs and showing the speed limit on the active driving display. The system can also flash a light or sound a buzzer if the driver exceeds the speed limit. Furthermore, the system can also recognize “no entry” and stop signs.
In addition to TSR, the Mazda 3 now gets Advanced Smart City Brake Support. Out goes the near infrared laser sensor, as Mazda has replaced it with a forward-sensing camera. The updated system can recognize humans as well as vehicles, being able to detect vehicles from 4 to 80 km/h and humans from 10 – 80 km/h.
New colours are also available, namely Eternal Blue Mica and Sonic Silver Metallic. These new colours join Soul Red Premium Metallic, which represents the KODO design language.
Prices in Japan start from 1.76 million yen for the Axela 15C, while the range-topping Axela 22XD L Package will set buyers back for 3.31 million yen. For those seeking to get more mileage per tank, Mazda also offers a Axela Hybrid, powered by the company’s SkyActiv Hybrid system. Here, the Axela Sedan gets a standard CVT that drives the front wheels. The tax-exempted Axela Hybrid can be had in three flavours, with prices starting from 2.47 million yen.
2016 Mazda 3 facelift