Every year, Mazda gives their cars upgrades in small increments, and customers definitely appreciate the changes that the Mazda3 has gotten. This year, according to Motoring, the company is stepping up its game in terms of combustion engine efficiency with the new powerplant they are releasing - with homogenous charge compression ignition (HCCI). This will be launched in August at a technology conference that will take place in Frankfurt.
HCCI is a gas-powered engine that works like a diesel mill. It compresses the mixture of air and fuel in the cylinder until combustion. Apparently, the Mazda engine (a Skyactiv II engine) will use spark plugs at lower speeds, but when the car goes faster, the powerplant will switch to HCCI.
The company further added that the Skyactiv II engine is going to be more efficient by 30 percent compared to current gasoline-fueled engines. This means that the new Mazda 3 could have a fuel economy of 42 miles per gallon compared to the current 32 mpg combined.
The Mazda 3 is scheduled to arrive in 2018, and it will be equipped with the Skyactiv II engine. This engine will also be used throughout the company’s lineup. This October, Mazda will preview the next generation Mazda 3 along with a concept at the Tokyo Motor Show, according to Motoring.
If this project turns out to be a success, Mazda will be the pioneer for the use of the HCCI on a gasoline-fueled production car. Furthermore, the efficiency gains would probably end up in the next generation Mazda sports coupe. But back in 2007, General Motors attempted to build an experimental version that apparently boosted fuel economy by as much as 15 percent. GM used the Saturn Aura and the Opel Vectra as test vehicles for this, and both models had modified 2.2 liter Ecotec four-cylinder engines.
The 2018 Mazda 3 Sport trim will come with a price tag of $18,095 for the sedan, and $19,345 for the five-door hatchback. This comes with a 2.0 liter I4 with 155 horsepower. Inside is a 7-inch infotainment system with touchscreen function. The base trim comes standard with safety features including autonomous emergency braking to ensure the safety of passengers.
Moving up the mid-range is a Mazda 3 Touring, and the range topping model would be the Mazda 3 Grand Touring, both available in sedan and hatchback models. Prices range from $20,090 to $23,895. They come standard with a six-speed manual, but you can opt for a six-speed automatic for an additional $1,050.