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http://wardsauto.com/ar/auto_goodies_await...mazda/index.htm

WardsAuto.com, Oct 7 2002

SANTA MONICA, CA – Mazda Motor Corp. will try to keep its all-new Mazda6 sports sedan fresh – at least through the ’05 model year – with an all-wheel-drive variant, a performance boost and a navigation system, Ward’s learns.

SANTA MONICA, CA – Mazda Motor Corp. will try to keep its all-new Mazda6 sports sedan fresh – at least through the ’05 model year – with an all-wheel-drive variant, a performance boost and a navigation system, Ward’s learns.


Mazda6
Mazda is entering a “product renaissance,” says a Mazda North America Operations (MNAO) spokesman. And in keeping with this approach, expect an aggressive schedule of innovation, such as AWD.

Mazda engineers in Japan are developing an AWD system envisioned by Robert Davis, MNAO vice president-product development and strategy.

It is “more quattro than Subaru,” Davis says, favoring the attributes of Audi AG’s trademark AWD system over that of Mazda rival Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd.

A more direct hint is displayed at the Paris auto show, where Mazda unveils its MPS concept car. Based on the Mazda6, it boasts AWD that features active torque control.

“The result is an electronically controlled, torque-split 4-wheel-drive system that is suitable for high-performance cars and gives precise tire-to-road contact, even at high revs,” Mazda says.

Davis also has declared similar ambitions for MPV, the auto maker’s minivan, which featured AWD in a previous incarnation

But there is an immediate – though not insurmountable – impediment to equipping the Mazda6 with AWD, Davis says.

For the ’04 model year, Mazda6 will feature a 2-stage catalytic converter that enables the car to meet new emissions guidelines.

The problem? It compromises the AWD system’s packaging.

However, Davis has no worries about keeping Mazda6 on car-buyers’ radar. Before an AWD version makes it to market, there will be a Mazdaspeed Mazda6, he tells Ward’s.

This promises specs such as class-leading horsepower. Anything short of this mark doesn’t earn the Mazdaspeed designation, Davis says.

But even before these Mazda6 variations, MNAO promises a navigation system and two additional body styles – wagon and hatchback – to augment sedan numbers. Sedans began accumulating Sept. 30 at AutoAlliance International Inc., the Flat Rock, MI, assembly operation shared by MNAO and Ford Motor Co.

A version of the Mazda6 navigation system will debut on next year’s RX-8, Ward’s learns. In the Mazda6, the system will fit into a covered storage compartment that now sits empty atop the instrument panel of the ’03 car.

Meanwhile, the wagon and hatchback configurations of the Mazda6 – already streaming into Europe and Asia from Mazda’s plant in Hofu, Japan – will launch in North America as ’04 models.

Japan also is getting all three body styles. Mazda6 bears the name Atenza for that market.

Expectations are the wagon and hatch each will account for 20% of Mazda6 U.S. sales, with the sedan garnering the remaining 60%.

Davis and MNAO are coy about the prospect of bringing to North America Mazda’s 2L turbodiesel, which powers Mazda6 and MPV in Europe.

End of article.

That's it then. America is getting the NAV system and Mazdaspeed. Awesome!!!
 

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Good work Mazdaman!

but er.....there is going to be a Mazda6 SportBreak 2.3 Active AWD in Novenber this year...well...here in holland that is
 

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This is exciting to know. I hope we do get the MPS in the US. It's sooooo nice. I was hoping the hatchback will launch sooner... not as 04 model.
 

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Actually all Mazda 6 models are coming out as a 2004. This includes the sedan. It is coming out as an all new 2004 Mazda 6.

They did not say that it will release it the same time as the sedan so the earlier news that the hatch and wagon comes several months after the release of the sedan is still valid.

Hiep
 

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This is GREAT news. The impression I got from the article, as far as AWD goes, is that it will be offered some time in '05.
 

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QUOTE
Originally posted by hieppo


            Actually all Mazda 6 models are coming out as a 2004.  This includes the sedan.  It is coming out as an all new 2004 Mazda 6.

Hiep[/b]
If that's true, which I hope it is, then this statement confuses me "A version of the Mazda6 navigation system will debut on next year’s RX-8, Ward’s learns. In the Mazda6, the system will fit into a covered storage compartment that now sits empty atop the instrument panel of the ’03 car."

How could a covered storage compartment sit atop the instrument panel of the '03 car if there isn't going to be an '03 car?
 

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[Mr. Burns] Eeeexcellent [/Mr. Burns]
Just what I've been wishing for! AWD will become an option across the line. And navigation will come. Good, 'cause I have a hopeless sense of direction.

Okay everyone, let's get the nomenclature clear: My understanding is that the concept cars are part of the Mazda Performance Series. So last week at the Paris Motor Show we saw the debut of the MPS 6 concept. But when they actually enter production, it will be with the MazdaSpeed brand name. Therefore in a year or so we should be seeing the MazdaSpeed 6 as a big brother to the MazdaSpeed Protege. Is there any dispute on the naming convention?

tcwong: Is summer so far away? Personally I'm waiting for either the MazdaSpeed or an AWD variant of the hatchback, so I don't have much sympathy. Just think of it as more time to save up that down payment. :D

hieppo: Are you sure? I thought the sedan would be launched as a 2003 in December. The article itself mentions it:
QUOTE
A version of the Mazda6 navigation system will debut on next year’s RX-8, Ward’s learns. In the Mazda6, the system will fit into a covered storage compartment that now sits empty atop the instrument panel of the ’03 car.[/b]
 

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kenoka: I'm just afarid hatchback won't be released until dec 03. Summer isn't too far away in Texas :)

The mazdaspeed6 is definitely on the watch list. RX8 will be out in 03, too. Mazda is launching all the goodies at full speed.
 

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QUOTE
Originally posted by kenoka

Just what I've been wishing for!  AWD will become an option across the line.  [/b]
That's more than I hoped for :)

QUOTE
And navigation will come.  Good, 'cause I have a hopeless sense of direction.[/b]


me too

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But when they actually enter production, it will be with the MazdaSpeed brand name.  Therefore in a year or so we should be seeing the MazdaSpeed 6 as a big brother to the MazdaSpeed Protege.  Is there any dispute on the naming convention?[/b]


sounds good to me

QUOTE
..Personally I'm waiting for either the MazdaSpeed or an AWD variant of the hatchback, so I don't have much sympathy.  Just think of it as more time to save up that down payment. :D[/b]
yes.. more money... yes.. AWD

QUOTE
hieppo: Are you sure?  I thought the sedan would be launched as a 2003 in December.  The article itself mentions it:
A version of the Mazda6 navigation system will debut on next year's RX-8, Ward's learns. In the Mazda6, the system will fit into a covered storage compartment that now sits empty atop the instrument panel of the '03 car.[/b


I already said that. :)
 

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Expectations are the wagon and hatch each will account for 20% of Mazda6 U.S. sales, with the sedan garnering the remaining 60%.[/b]
That's because when the sedan is released, people will gobble them up. Then when they decide to release the hatch and wagon, everybody will already have bought the sedan. :p
 

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I think that the Mazda6 MPS will be called MazdaSpeed 6, but not in Europe. When I think of MazdaSpeed, I think of tuned Mazda's which aren't for sale here...

But there also was the 323 MPS, and that dóes became the MazdaSpeed Protege.....confusing.....but we have to wait and see
 
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