As before, pricing sits mainly in the £17,000 to £23,000 bracket and the Mazda3 is offered as a five-door hatchback or a four-door 'Fastback' saloon, the latter bodystyle rivalling cars like the Volkswagen Jetta and the Audi A3 saloon. Those aren't the key targets in Mazda's crosshairs though. Expected Mazda3 conquest sales will be based around the mainstream hatch variant and will largely come from mainstream marques, with the Ford Focus, the Vauxhall Astra, the Renault Megane and the Peugeot 308 being likely targets.
This Mazda is offered with the sort of high-tech features that not so very long ago were the preserve of luxury saloons. There are refinements like a head-up display, touch-screen satellite-navigation and mobile internet connectivity. The mobile system is particularly interesting, following the likes of Toyota into the market with a system that allows the car to pair with a smartphone and display Facebook and Twitter updates. A nine-speaker Bose audio system is also available.
Buyers choose between SE, SE-L and Sport trim levels, with or without sat nav. Even the base SE comes with 16-inch alloy wheels, air conditioning, power-folding heated mirrors, a leather steering wheel, a trip computer, a radio/CD with six speaker audio system, a 7-inch TFT colour touch screen, USB/iPod connectivity and a Bluetooth hands-free system. Key safety equipment upgrades an 'Advanced Smart City Brake Support' system that now uses a forward-sensing camera rather than a laser, adding to the set-up's pedestrian detection capabilities. Buyers can also specify Adaptive LED Headlights.