By: Jason Woosey
Hiroshima, Japan - The Mazda2 has been completely redesigned and this fourth iteration of the B-segment hatch brings with it the whole suite of Skyactiv engine, chassis and body technologies and Kodo design language.
In fact, the new 2 (called Demio in its home market) looks very much like a latest-generation Mazda3 that shrunk in the wash, which is by no means a bad thing. Sure, some will accuse Mazda of lazy design here, but can you really argue with the logic of following a successful design formula? You be the judge.
Powering the new hatch is a completely new range of Skyactiv engines, including a 1.5-litre turbodiesel that delivers 77kW and a brawny 250Nm of twist.
On the petrol front, the new Skyactiv-G direct injection engines are normally aspirated and offered in 1.3- and 1.5-litre sizes, for which Mazda has yet to quote outputs.
The cabin is modern yet sporty and incorporates a new infotainment and connectivity system, similar to that in the new Mazda3. Mazda also promises a class-leading array of active safety technologies although the company is not ready to go into any real detail at this stage.
The car has already gone into production in Japan and the global roll-out will take place after its Japanese launch in the third quarter of this year.
Around that time Mazda will be relaunching as a separate entity in South Africa (following the Ford divorce) and while this will be spearheaded by the new Mazda3 and CX-5, it should go without saying that the new 2 will eventually form part of the local line-up.