The Mazda Hazumi concept – teased in the tightly cropped sketch above – is set to provide an accurate impression of the design of the third-generation Mazda 2 before the final production model is revealed later this year and reaches Australian showrooms in the first half of 2015.
Mazda explains the Hazumi concept takes its name comes from the Japanese word meaning to "bound or spring up" and conveys "the image of an untamed animal leaping", which it describes as fitting for a small car designed to look as if it is "bursting with energy".
The new-generation Mazda 2 will become the fourth model developed from the ground up under the Japanese car maker’s Skyactiv philosophy, following the CX-5, Mazda 6 and Mazda 3. As with its sibling models, the new 2 city car will feature engines, transmissions, aerodynamics and other components designed for optimum efficiency, and embrace the same ‘Kodo’ design language.
The second-generation Mazda 2 is already available with a 62kW/112Nm 1.3-litre four-cylinder Skyactiv petrol engine in Japan, where the car is badged Demio. Reports suggest the new 2 will employ a new 1.5-litre four-cylinder Skyactiv engine, however, with approximate outputs of 75kW of power and 150Nm of torque. The current 2’s 1.5-litre engine produces 76kW and 135Nm.
A six-speed manual is tipped to come standard, while the current car’s dated four-speed automatic will reportedly make way for a continuously variable transmission (CVT).
The Mazda Hazumi concept will debut in Geneva alongside the car maker’s all-new 1.5-litre four-cylinder Skyactiv diesel engine.
The new oil-burner is expected to make its way under the bonnet of the forthcoming Mazda CX-3 sub-compact SUV, which, according to the Nikkei newspaper, is due to make its debut before the end of the year.
Stay tuned for more details on the Mazda Hazumi concept and new engine in the lead up to their unveiling in Geneva on March 4.