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FIRST PICTURES - sleek new Mazda6

Mazda's all-new flagship sedan will make its world debut next at the Moscow motor show on Wednesday 29 August - and it'll be here in South Africa in the first half of next year.

The 2013 Mazda6 is the second model, after the recently-announced CX-5, to embody the brand's new Kodo 'Soul of Motion' design language, which retains the signature strong front wheel-arches of previous models but links them with a more flowing front treatment.

New design language retains the signature strong front wheel-arches of previous models but links them with a more flowing front treatment.

The effect is modern, but cool and uncluttered, and may prove to be the new Mazda6's secret weapon against a rising tide of Korean contenders, almost all styled in Russelsheim by Peter Schreyer.

The rear treatment is conventional by comparison, with a very short deck and flowing roofline.

ENERGY LOOP

The new Six will also have the full range of SkyActiv technologies for reducing fuel consumption and emissions including, for the first time on a production vehicle, Mazda's new i-eLoop brake regeneration system.

The introduction of i-eLoop, says Mazda, is the second stage of its building-block strategy for 'green' technology development, which aims to achieve far-reaching improvements in conventional combustion-engine development before moving on to the step-by-step introduction of alternative power sources such as batteries and fuel cells.

Whether this will put Mazda in the forefront of 'clean combustion' technology, or behind the curve in hybrid and electric-vehicle development, remains to be seen.

RUSSIAN SPECIFICATION

The new Mazda6 is intended to stand as the flagship model of the 'new wave' from Toyo Kogyo, combining the style, upmarket finishes and comfort expected from a C/D segment sedan with 'zoom-zoom' responsiveness and agile handling.

The debut model on display in Moscow will be a Russian-specification sedan with a direct-injection, two-litre petrol engine and six-speed automatic transmission.

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