Despite building some decent midsize sedans over the years, Mazda knew it needed to undertake a significant model makeover in order to keep pace with the CD-segment, namely Accord and Camry. With this newest Mazda6 they have done just that.
Their mantra? Zoom-zoom evolution.
From the beginning Mazda knew they had three key areas to improve on before they would be ready to release a new model: Quality, power and size. These were areas where midsize buyers had been rejecting the current Mazda6 in favor of the competition.
And Mazda was so proud of their accomplishments in the new car that during the initial press launch programs they brought out some of their key competitors’ vehicles for us to test the new 6 against.
The makeover on this vehicle is so complete that the only item carried over from the first-generation Mazda6 is the firewall panel, nothing else. Body panels, engines, transmissions, suspension, steering, interior – it’s all new.
For the new 6 Mazda will concentrate on one body configuration only – no coupe, wagon or five-door models as some of the competition offers in this segment. The new Mazda6 will offer the best of what the others produce and it arrives in one basic body.
This new car features impressive quality, more power and just the right size for the midsize sedan segment. Initial Quality Score improvements were targeted at a 65 percent improvement to lead the segment and their new V-6 offers class-leading power while the new Mazda6 is larger than Altima and the new Chevy Malibu.
The Mazda6 is offered in three trim levels across two-powertrain platforms. Their new 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder and 3.7-liter V-6 engines are both offered across the sport, touring and grand touring packages. The four can be mated to either six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmissions, with the six backed solely by a six-speed automatic gearbox, and all variants are front-wheel-drive.
Walking up to the new 6 you are immediately drawn to its muscular stance up front with a long hood/short trunk design that have it looking “fast forward” even while sitting still. Sure there are some familiar design elements depending on which angle you view the Mazda from, but all work well together to combine for an attractive, modern package that won’t leave drivers embarrassed to say they drive a midsize sedan.
Stomp the accelerator and the Mazda6 springs to life, willing to offer a smooth, enjoyable driving experience whether just running to the store or taking that road trip you’ve been planning for some time now.
Mazda6 seats up to five and offers class-leading combined front and rear seat legroom while not cramping rear passenger headroom. And the trunk offers plenty of space for luggage or groceries.
By the numbers, the 2010 Mazda6 I-4 offers 170hp with EPA estimates of 21 mpg city and 30 mpg highway. The six-cylinder cars produce 272 ponies achieving 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway.
Pricing begins at $18,450 and goes to $28,390 base MSRP for the loaded V-6 car.
The CD-sized segment accounts for some two million unit sales each year and Mazda is on track to take a much bigger bite of that pie with the improvements made to this new Mazda6.