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by Tim Beissmann

Mazda Australia has upgraded its top-selling Mazda3 small car, making Bluetooth and USB connectivity standard across the range and bringing a number of styling enhancements to the high-performance Mazda3 MPS hot-hatch.

The Mazda3 Neo scores Bluetooth phone connectivity with audio streaming, bringing the base model into line with the rest of the line-up, while the USB port is new to all models (except the MPS), having previously been a surprising omission from the specification list.

Mazda’s Bluetooth system allows drivers to make and receive phone calls hands-free and stream music from their smartphones wirelessly, while the USB port lets owners connect smartphones and memory sticks to play music and display song, album and artist information on the car’s multi-information screen.

The sporty Mazda3 MPS benefits from a fresh look with black paint across the side mirrors, lower rear bumper and parts of the rear spoiler, dark metallic alloy wheels, and a shark fin-style antenna at the end of the roof.

All of the specification updates to the Mazda3 range come at no extra cost, with the Mazda3 Neo still priced from $20,330 and the MPS topping the line-up at $39,490 before on-road costs.




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