Mazda2 isn’t going to play bridesmaid

Published on April 7th, 2010

Mazda haven’t always played by the rulebook, straying off the beaten path in a bid to be different and stand out from the rest of the volume-centric mainstream Japanese carmakers.

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Their Zoom Zoom motto is testament to that, preferring to make vehicles that are more fun to drive with an injection of sportiness that get the job done with a wider grin on the driver’s face rather than staid workhorses that do nothing but settle the driver into a monotonous cruise to boredom.

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Hence, a new model from Mazda is always met with a tinge more anticipation and if the car just happens to have won the coveted World Car of the Year 2008 title, rest assured it’s going to be epic.

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The car in question is the Mazda2 that is now officially available on our shores. Since its launch, the Mazda2 has picked up over 51 prizes from all walks of the automotive world, including the aforementioned World Car of the Year 2008.

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Prima Merdu, the local franchise holder and sole importer for the Mazda brand and Bermaz Motor, the exclusive distributor have not only brought in the hatchback version but the sedan guise as well, making us one of the first countries to offer the sedan version as well.

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Distinctively Mazda in every was possible, the third-generation Mazda2 is feature-packed and competitively priced. It boasts weight-reduction from the previous model with use of high-tensile steel for the critical areas and lightweight materials for the rest. It’s little surprise then that the Mazda2 has a five-star Euro NCAP rating. Of course ABS, EBD and BA are standard together but the ISOFIX child seat anchors are only available on the hatch.

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Apart from the safety aspect that would make it a hit with young families, the driving dynamics have also benefited with the use of twin-tube dampers.

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Nestled in the engine bay is the MZR 1.5liter, 16V DOHC four-banger that pushes out 102hp and 135Nm of torque. The engine has been tuned to deliver optimum fuel economy apart from being torquey for smooth city driving. The MZR engine comes equipped with the Sequential Valve Timing system and features low-tension piston rings and shimless tappets.

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Power goes to the front wheels via a 4-speed slushbox.

Each body style will come in two different spec versions, the garden variety V-Spec and the spicier R-Spec.’

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From the spec list, there’s only one notable change between the V-Spec and R-Spec model but what a difference it would make. The suspension settings on the R-Spec model have been tuned differently and lowered slightly. Now it would seem negligible but we’re pretty sure the driving dynamics would benefit tremendously from this.

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Other differences include front fog lamps for both models with side skirts and a roof spoiler for the hatch. Shoes are 15-inch standard while the R-Spec’s get a bump up to 16.

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Money talks and the Mazda2 speaks volumes with its pricing, in a good way of course. The V-Spec sedan will set you back RM79,859.50 while the R-Spec goes for RM82,937.50. As for the hatch, the base model will cost you RM82,111.50 with the sportier R-Spec making your wallet lighter by RM85,189.50.

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With pricing like this, the Mazda2 has torn apart the B-segment with its feature-packed spec-list and incredible pricing. It’s about time the B-segment had some freshness injected into it to give the Toyota Vios and Honda City something to sweat about after years of dominance.

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If you’d like a closer look at the Mazda2, drop by your local Mazda dealer or the newly opened Prima Merdu showroom at the Puchong Financial Commercial Center (PFCC) in Bandar Puteri, Puchong.

text & pix: Dinesh Appavu & Mazda

Comments

  1. Posted by shalie on April 17th, 2010, 05:08

    if the 3doors version is available… aihh….

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