Mazda presented first official images of the highly-anticipated new Mazda3, ending months of intense media speculation.
The new-generation Mazda3 will redefine small car benchmarks for styling, handling and value for money when it arrives in Australia around the middle of 2009.
The new Mazda3 will inherit the mantles of Australia's third-best selling passenger car, and a leader in the small car segment that accounts for one-quarter of all new vehicles bought by Australians.
More than 1.5 million first-generation Mazda3s have been sold in more than 100 countries around the world; almost 150,000 in Australia alone since its launch in January 2004. Mazda3 has a class-leading reputation for value for money and driving enthusiasm, and is popular with private buyers.
Mazda Executive Vice President Philip Spender flew to Australia to present first official images of the new-generation Mazda3 sedan at the Sydney motor show.
Embargoes around the world were synchronised with Mr Spender's presentation. As these first official images were revealed on the video screen at Mazda's Darling Harbour stand, these very same images were instantly sent to thousands of the world's automotive media in more than 100 countries across five continents.
"Today is a very important day for new car buyers, both in Australia and around the world," said Mr. Spender "Today is the world's first look at the new-generation Mazda3, a compact car that will build further on the Stylish, Insightful and Spirited foundations laid by its predecessor."
With the first-generation Mazda3, Mazda proved that small cars can be stylish and fun to drive as well as economical and affordable. And Australians voted with their wallets, making the Mazda3 one of the biggest-selling passenger cars in Australia.
This new-generation Mazda3 revealed today will take these core Mazda3 qualities to even greater heights, further cementing Mazda3's popularity with Australians.
Mr Spender said the new Mazda3 will be presented in the metal at the Los Angeles Auto Show on November 19, 2008.
"We chose Sydney to give the world its first look at the new Mazda3's striking design. Following that, North America will host the world debut of the Mazda3 sedan in late November. Shortly after that the new-generation Mazda3 five-door hatchback will debut on the European continent. I think it's only fitting that a car that accounts for one-third of Mazda's global sales should have a truly global reveal. "
Mr. Spender said the Mazda3, and small cars in general, are increasingly significant in markets around the world.
"The rising cost of fuel is changing the automotive consumer landscape not only in Australia but around the world. That, and the increasingly high cost of living is driving consumers towards smaller, more affordable, more economical vehicles.
"As a result we're seeing increased levels of equipment, prestige, performance and refinement in small cars, making them even greater value.
"We've developed the new-generation Mazda3 to be a small-car leader around the world. The Mazda3's expressive and emotional styling, heightened driving dynamics, quality and refinement will propel it to even greater heights than the very successful model it replaces."