April 10, 2014— Ten years since the Mazda3 nameplate made its debut on Philippine soil, its third and latest generation arrives on local shores. Packing the most recent evolutions in all the key aspects that have made the first and second models (launched locally in 2004 and 2012, respectively) a success both here and abroad, the all-new Mazda3 pushes the boundaries in vehicle design, engineering, and manufacture not just at the level of the C-segment, but of the automotive industry as a whole.
“Barely six months after its global launch, the all-new Mazda3 SKYACTIV is now available in the Philippines,” said Steven Tan, president of Berjaya Auto Philippines, Inc., the official distributor of Mazda vehicles in the country. “The very first Mazda3 revolutionized the C-segment by providing more than basic practicality and a low price point—qualities that buyers in that segment had traditionally focused on. This latest model builds upon the groundbreaking attributes of its two predecessors, with dynamic design, unparalleled driving performance and dynamics, outstanding real-world fuel economy, world-class safety, and state-of-the-art connectivity.
The key model attributes
The all-new Mazda3 SKYACTIV is available in both hatchback and sedan configurations, and features the “KODO – Soul of Motion” design language. Outside, this is expressed by the sense of forward motion that the car evokes even when it is standing still. Within the cabin, it is apparent in the overall feeling of unconstrained, comfortable, and practical space for the occupants as well as in highly focused cockpit environment for the driver.
The third SKYACTIV vehicle in Mazda’s Philippine lineup, the all-new Mazda3 combines the body, chassis, and powertrains developed under the SKYACTIV banner in order to achieve the perfect balance between performance and fuel efficiency. The model is available with two gasoline-engine choices: the V SKYACTIV with the 1.5L SKYACTIV-G and the R SKYACTIV with the 2.0L SKYACTIV-G with i-STOP and i-ELOOP. Both are paired with the SKYACTIV-DRIVE six-speed automatic transmission. The bigger-displacement engine also comes with the i-STOP idling stop system and the i-ELOOP brake-energy regeneration system.
The all-new Mazda3 SKYACTIV also carries the first-ever implementation of the Human-Machine Interface (HMI). Based on Mazda’s “Heads-Up Cockpit” concept, it was developed to create a driving environment that minimizes cognitive, visual, and manual distractions even as the driver processes information related to vehicle and infotainment-system operation. Among its features are the Active Driving Display, which projects vehicle speed and turn-by-turn directions from the navigation system onto a clear panel vertically mounted above the meter hood; Commander Control, a control device positioned where the driver can reach it by simply moving one hand from the steering wheel into a downward natural motion toward the center console; and a seven-inch center display that is mounted at the top of the dashboard and may be checked by the driver with minimal eye movement.
Completing the all-new Mazda3 package is a new connectivity system that provides an even wider range of audio, communication, and navigation functions. Paired with a compatible smartphone with Internet connection, it may also access Aha Radio and Sticher apps, which provide music, audiobooks, podcasts from the Internet, and even social-media updates from Twitter and Facebook.
The local model range
For the Philippine market, the all-new Mazda3 comes in four variants: the 1.5L V SKYACTIV hatchback and sedan, and the 2.0-liter R SKYACTIV hatchback and sedan. There are many vehicle features that are standard across the range, including an engine push-start button, Commander Control, and seven-inch dash-top display of the HMI; auxiliary buttons and paddle shifters on the steering wheel; automatic single-zone climate controls; Bluetooth hands-free phone integration; rear parking sensors; driver and passenger airbags; ABS with electronic brake-force distribution; and dynamic stability control.
The V SKYACTIV variants have halogen headlights; 16-inch alloy wheels with 205/60 R16 tires; a single exhaust tailpipe; high quality fabric interior upholstery; and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Meanwhile, the 2.0-liter R SKYACTIV variants have automatic bi-xenon headlamps with daytime running lights; power-folding side mirrors; 18-inch alloy wheels with 215/45 R18 tires; dual exhaust tailpipes; a sunroof; a smart keyless-entry system; leather interior upholstery; a leather-wrapped steering wheel; and additional curtain airbags. The R SKYACTIV Hatchback, in particular, is positioned to be the sportiest variant in the range, with bright finishing for the dual exhaust tailpipes and a shark-fin antenna.
All variants are available with YOJIN3, Mazda Philippines’ free three-year/60,000km periodic-maintenance service package that includes lubricant, parts and labor, and emergency roadside assistance with concierge service.
The Mazda SKYACTIV Experiment Part 3
To officially launch the all-new Mazda3, Berjaya Auto Philippines hosted the third iteration of its highly successful driving-event format. The three-day Mazda SKYACTIV Experiment Part 3 took members of the local motoring media to Baler, Aurora—through a route with a total distance of 286 kilometers, one-way.
The scenic route featured highways, provincial roads, and winding passes, and provided a rigorous but enjoyable test for the all-new Mazda3 SKYACTIV and the participants. On day three, the vehicles were fueled to the brim prior to the return trip to Manila, and were topped up again at Shell NLEX in Mexico, Pampanga, for an impromptu fuel-economy assessment under normal driving conditions.
A delegation from Mazda Motor Corporation also flew in from Japan in order to give detailed presentations of the all-new Mazda3’s development and features during the event. The members of the delegation included Masaya Kodama, the Mazda3 SKYACTIV program engineer; Moriuchi Takeo, the deputy program manager for Mazda Motor Corporation’s vehicle development promotion department; and Hiroyuki Yoshida, a Mazda Connect specialist.
“It is more typical for brand-new models to be introduced to the Philippine market through a formal event, but such is our confidence in the latest Mazda3 that we decided to launch it via the Mazda SKYACTIV Experiment 3—a driving event—with the participation of the local motoring media,” Tan said. “After all, this car was designed and engineered with the goal of providing the Jinba Ittai driving experience, in which the car and the driver merge together as one. It’s only fitting that we introduced the car to the market by hitting the road.”
Berjaya Auto Philippines, Inc. is the exclusive distributor of Mazda vehicles and parts in the Philippines. Current product line-up includes Mazda2 sub-compact sedan and hatchback, Mazda3 SKYACTIV compact sedan and hatchback, Mazda6 executive sedan, CX-5 compact SUV, CX-9 seven-seater SUV, MX-5 2-seater sports roadster and the BT-50 pickup truck. There are 13 Mazda sales and service dealerships located across Metro Manila – Mazda Greenhills along EDSA, Mazda Pasig along C5, Mazda Quezon Ave. and Mazda Alabang – provincial dealerships are located in Pampanga, Dagupan, Cabanatuan, Batangas, Cebu, CDO, Tarlac, Cavite and Iloilo.