Johannesburg - Mazda’s ‘Kodo design’ BT-50, released in South Africa in 2012 with SUV-like styling and features, was unashamedly aimed at the leisure market.
Now a mild but carefully focused facelift has pushed the BT-50 even further away from its workhorse roots with a new front treatment, redesigned side steps and tail-light clusters, and 17 inch alloys. There’s also an automatic transmission option for the 2.2-litre doublecab for the first time.
The cabin has been updated with a raft of new features, including Bluetooth connectivity, a multifunction steering wheel and, as you move up the model ladder, a rear-view camera, an auto-dimming mirror and power adjustment for the driver’s seat.
What it’s got…
The BT-50 double cab range now starts with the new 2.2 SLX, boasting power front windows, fabric upholstery, cruise control, aircon, Bluetooth, radio/CD with USB and auxiliary inputs, and 16 inch alloys.
Its 2.2-litre turbodiesel four is rated, as before, for 110kW at 3700rpm and 375Nm, driving the rear wheels via a six-speed manual ‘box and locking rear differential.
The 2.2 SLE adds to that 17 inch rims, leather seats, his-and-hers auto aircon, auto headlights and wipers, an auto-dimming mirror, a power-adjusted driver’s seat with electric lumbar support adjustment, rear parking sensors with a reversing camera and - for an extra R20 000 - a six-speed automatic transmission.
The flagship 3.2-litre turbodiesel SLE 4x4 has 147kW at 3000rpm and 470Nm on tap and, in addition to all-wheel drive, comes with with either manual or auto transmission, load adaptive control, trailer sway mitigation, roll-over mitigation, hill hold and hill descent control.
What it costs
2.2 SLX double cab - R441 600
2.2 SLE double cab - R477 700
2.2 SLE double cab AT - R497 700
3.2 SLE double cab 4x4 - R541 700
3.2 SLE double cab 4x4 AT - R555 700
These prices now include the same aftercare package as Mazda passenger cars enjoy: a three-year unlimited distance warranty, a three-year service plan and three-years’ roadside assistance.