1 2
CyberEric
CyberEric HalfDork
4/15/19 2:52 p.m.

Thought this was interesting since they’ve been saying “no” so much recently.

https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a27127908/mazda-considers-mazdaspeed-3-hot-hatch/

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
4/15/19 5:18 p.m.

Wait, don't they have special (super charged?) engine they are planning on putting in the new 3 already?  It's not supposed to be badged as a Speed but the motor I think it was pretty powerful.

I would also hope they would not put a downgrade (250hp motor noted in article) in a new Speed3

Snrub
Snrub HalfDork
4/15/19 5:41 p.m.

It might not be a big money maker, but I have to think it makes sense to continue to burnish Mazda's enthusiast credibility. The CX-5 comes in the AWD Turbo form. It's the same platform as the Mazda3 and the Mazda3 is now offered in AWD. I'm not sure if the AWD drivetrain is the same in n/a vs. turbo form. The other problem would be the transmission. To keep costs down, would they consider only selling an automatic version? Offering a manual transmission would mean a lot of extra effort, as opposed to very little effort. The Mazdaspeed3 was known for having strong low-end grunt. Would they consider giving the engine a different tune, perhaps different compressor/turbine in the turbo alter the power output towards the top end of the rev range?

Mazda seems to be positioning itself to be more than just the "fun to drive" company, they seem to want to be for descerning drivers with multiple types of interests. I think it's still important to offer fun to drive cars. If in the past the Mazdaspeed3 was the rowdy hot hatch, perhaps this time they'll aim to out sophisticate the GTI?

Air cooled - I believe the engine you're referring to is their Skyactive-X engine which can perform compression ignition under some circumstances and light spark igition in others. I think they were targeting ~200hp.

sergio
sergio Reader
4/15/19 9:05 p.m.

My Speed3 is plenty fun for me. I test drove the mazda6, 310 ft lb torque and whatever hp rating they give it. Was not impressed by the performance. It’s nice inside but I want power. Like Mark Donohue said when I can leave black marks down the straight to the next corner then I have enough hp. Well maybe not that much but something like that. I don’t need refinement, but then I guess the average buyer isn’t a boy racer. The other thing is price, if it sells for much over $30k it will be hard to sell. That was the one of the good things about the Speed3 cheap and powerful. 

irish44j
irish44j MegaDork
4/15/19 9:32 p.m.
Snrub said:

I. If in the past the Mazdaspeed3 was the rowdy hot hatch, perhaps this time they'll aim to out sophisticate the GTI?

It's not a stretch to think a new MS3 could out-perform the current (non-R) GTI - Mazda seems to really have the formula down for great-handling cars that are fun to drive and a stock GTI isn't exactly a powerhouse in the engine department. But the GTI isn't all the fun to drive mostly because it IS so sophisticated compared to other cars in the price range/class (which if you've read my reviews of mine, is as much a complaint as a praise). The GTI has great handling, balance, and superb brakes. But it's so composed it almost feels like it's not doing things as fast as it actually is. But as a former Mazda3 owner and a current GTI owner, I would think Mazda would have to take some major, major steps in order to equal the GTI's "adult sophistication" in terms of features and quality feel, I woudl think.

 

 

captdownshift
captdownshift PowerDork
4/15/19 9:37 p.m.

Mazda's biggest concern with the idea of a new speed3 isn't a GTI though, it's an N. 

irish44j
irish44j MegaDork
4/15/19 9:54 p.m.
captdownshift said:

Mazda's biggest concern with the idea of a new speed3 isn't a GTI though, it's an N. 

agreed. I was just noting the "sophistication" aspect, which doesn't seem like it would be Mazda's primary goal. 

Vigo
Vigo UltimaDork
4/15/19 11:05 p.m.

I've been E36 M3ting on the idea of an MS3 with the current 2.5 all over IG lately. I feel like it would be a bad idea unless they do what they didn't do with all past Mazdaspeeds and give it a turbo setup that adds more to the experience than just midrange torque. Even if you don't see a dyno sheet or rpm numbers for the peaks, having a HP rating substantially less than the torque rating more or less means 'boring powerband'.  They'd need to take that motor and do what they did to the ND2: add 700rpm worth of powerband. Only probably more like double that. 

I feel like it's a segment that has seen a lot of really good cars put forth in the past 5 years or so and unless they're going to make it special they might as well put the turbo motor in it and just not call it a Mazdaspeed. We already know what happens when you put unexceptional turbo setups on sweet handling, cool looking cars and call them Mazdaspeeds. The MSM and the MSP.  The MS3 at least had a girthy enough boring powerband that it was legit fast, but guess what? It had MORE hp than the current 2.5t and the car itself weighed less. The 3 may be a better car now than it was then, but it won't be a better Mazdaspeed unless they up their game and substantially alter the power delivery of the 2.5.

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito PowerDork
4/16/19 10:59 a.m.

People have been asking for this since they stopped making the MS3 in 2013. Hell, I've been asking for one too! Here's my concern: The current 3 can only be had with a stick in a loaded-up FWD-only hatch, and it's right around $28k. The 2.5 Turbo engine in other cars is well over the $30K threshold, and if they are going after the Golf R like the rumors say, this car will be close to $40k or more. The old MS3 in Grand Touring trim was right around $30k. This won't be a bargain performance car.

For that money, there are a lot of other cars I'd buy before one of these.

STM317
STM317 UltraDork
4/16/19 11:08 a.m.

In reply to Tony Sestito :

Around $40k seems inline with pricing of other high performance trims of economy cars and hot hatches to me (Golf R, Focus RS, Civic Type R, WRX STI). It just needs to have similar performance to justify the price.

If they leave the performance bar a little lower (Focus ST, Veloster N, GTI, WRX) they can probably be fine with lower power levels, but it would have to be priced like those too.

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito PowerDork
4/16/19 11:21 a.m.

In reply to STM317 :

The easy button would be to plop the 2.5 Turbo in the 3 as is, offer a stick and/or AWD, and target the regular GTI. That would keep it under $30k and competitive with the WRX, Civic Si, GTI, and the new Hyundai offerings, and I think it would do well in that segment. The "premium" market that the STI and Golf R exist in is tough, and the volume just isn't there to justify Mazda building it.

The only problem with this is that I think Mazda believes that the 2.5 N/A 3 competes head to head with the WRX, Civic Si, GTI, and the new Hyundai offerings. When I bought my 2012 2.5 S Touring hatch in 2011, the numbers on paper were very close to the Civic Si at the time. I'm not sure the same can be said about the new cars, as the Civic Si has gotten a lot better since then.

CyberEric
CyberEric HalfDork
4/16/19 11:57 a.m.

Mazda is planning on refreshing the turbo 2.5 for 2020, so perhaps they will make it more of a rev-er in the process and put it in the speed3. 

The fact that one of the top brass at Mazda is engaged seems promising... maybe they will put the effort they put into the ND2 and make the motor special.

mazda isn’t going to make much money on it regardless, that all comes from the CX’s.

Vigo
Vigo UltimaDork
4/16/19 11:58 a.m.

Speaking of not changing the engine and just shooting for the bottom half of the segment, anyone remember the Lancer Ralliart? That ~250hp ~3400lb AWD auto-only 'compact' hatchback (what a coinkidink) from ten years ago? I think it was actually worse received when they made it heavier and added a blah turbo than when it was a 175hp fwd. At least Mazda doesn't have an EVO to make their other cars look like half-measures. angel

Devilsolsi
Devilsolsi Reader
4/16/19 12:08 p.m.

I have owned 2 MS3s (2008 and 2011) and my wife owns a current 3 (2015?). I would certainly be interested if they made a new MS3. Rumors have been out for a couple years about Mazda making a TCR race car, so if they more forward with that, it would make sense for them ot have a performance road version.

jstein77
jstein77 UltraDork
4/16/19 12:15 p.m.

As one that went from an FWD Sentra Turbo and an FWD FiST to the AWD FoRS, I can vouch for the fact that AWD truly enhances the driving experience and performance, even in the dry.  In the wet, there's just no comparison.

irish44j
irish44j MegaDork
4/16/19 4:53 p.m.
Tony Sestito said:

In reply to STM317 :

The only problem with this is that I think Mazda believes that the 2.5 N/A 3 competes head to head with the WRX, Civic Si, GTI, and the new Hyundai offerings.

The current Mazda3 no way, no how competes anywhere with the WRX lol. I know a ton of WRX owners (including formerly me), and doubt any of them even considered a regular Mazda 3 as a "cross-shop." GTI, yes (indeed, I got one). Veloster N, sure. Civic Si....kinda sorta, though IMO it's a step down from a GTI, which is a step down from the WRX in both price and performance. 

They're all great cars, but a FWD MS3 is a competitor with the WRX in reality. Make it AWD+bigger turbo, then it gets into STI/Golf R territory. The Civic R can clearly play in that ballpark with the AWD turbo cars, but seems like it's the exception rather than the rule. I'd be surprised if there's enough market to support anotether high-power FWD hot hatch in that price range, unless Mazda does something absolutely incredible with it. 

Mazda seems somewhat more practical-oriented, and fighting for a relatively small niche market sounds like a loser to me, whereas attacking the much larger GTI/Civic Si market with a turbo FWD 3 (with LSD) would seem to be the ticket. 

me: currently own GTI, previously owned WRX, also has owned several Mazdas including a 3S. So this discussion is relevant to me :D

 

 

irish44j
irish44j MegaDork
4/16/19 4:54 p.m.
jstein77 said:

As one that went from an FWD Sentra Turbo and an FWD FiST to the AWD FoRS, I can vouch for the fact that AWD truly enhances the driving experience and performance, even in the dry.  In the wet, there's just no comparison.

I agree. The GTI's LSD is stellar, but I constantly miss the AWD of the WRX (except at the gas pump, where I'm getting 8mpg better lol). 

CyberEric
CyberEric HalfDork
4/16/19 6:07 p.m.

In reply to irish44j :

Did you vote in the link I provided? You are exactly who they want to hear from.

poopshovel again
poopshovel again MegaDork
4/16/19 6:34 p.m.

Ace & Gary will be thrilled. Does it come in “flesh?”

irish44j
irish44j MegaDork
4/16/19 7:00 p.m.
CyberEric said:

In reply to irish44j :

Did you vote in the link I provided? You are exactly who they want to hear from.

yep, I voted, though honestly it would depend what they mean by "Mazdaspeed 3" - is it just a bunch of cosmetic stuff (how Nissan seems to do "performance" these days), will it be AWD, will it have M/T, etc.  

That said, I usually drive my cars for 8-10 years before I get a new one, and I'm only 6 months/8k miles into my new GTI lol...so I'm probably not in the market anytime soon! But would still like to see more cool affordable cars on the road and in the market. 

My other current complaint with the Mazda3 is shape: I do think it looks great cosmetically, but I really dislike it when hatchbacks have a heavily-sloped rear glass that reduces cargo area height (note: this same "styling feature" on my wife's CX-9 is equally dumb). Yeah, I'm 43 and stuff like that matters to me way more than it used to haha......

Can't seem to find any solid specs on the new 3's cargo volume though, so i certainly could be wrong on that point. 

The related beef is the gigantic c-pillars on this thing. I think my GTI has pretty big blind spots, and the Veloster i drove felt like a cave back there, there is so little glass. But the new 3 has way too much sheet metal back on the c-pillar. I really don't get this design style with the rear windows sloping up to an acute angle and the massively huge c-pillars. I know beltlines are going up, but my prefernce would be more glass all around me, not less. 

irish44j
irish44j MegaDork
4/16/19 7:01 p.m.
poopshovel again said:

Ace & Gary will be thrilled. Does it come in “flesh?”

hahahahahahhah. now that you say that and i look at the car, I can't unsee it. damn, and I thought the 3 looked pretty good until you said that :)

Floating Doc
Floating Doc Dork
4/16/19 9:13 p.m.

I suspect that the pinched shape of the rear hatch may have something to do with aerodynamics.

I don't like it either, but I'm old, and pine for station wagons, the likes of which we shall not see again.

irish44j
irish44j MegaDork
4/16/19 9:39 p.m.
Floating Doc said:

I suspect that the pinched shape of the rear hatch may have something to do with aerodynamics.

I don't like it either, but I'm old, and pine for station wagons, the likes of which we shall not see again.

Undoubtedly, it would have an aero drag effect. That said, 

The GTI EPA-rated fuel economy is 25/31 with 225hp @ 3000lbs though I consistently get 31mpg in 50/50 mixed city and highway, and 35+ on highway-only trips, so not sure what the EPA is doing....

The Mazda is rated 27/36, but that's with only 185hp.@ about the same weight. 

So with curb weight beign roughly equal,  the GTI has 22% more horsepower, but only 16% less MPGs. Obviously could be gearing, tires, etc but curious to know what the aero effect actually is, in practice. Seems like it would be a negligible amount on cars getting this kind of mileage - maybe notable for CAFE averages or something, with Mazda thinkni that's more valuable than cargo space. IDK. 

 

Knurled.
Knurled. MegaDork
4/16/19 9:41 p.m.
jstein77 said:

As one that went from an FWD Sentra Turbo and an FWD FiST to the AWD FoRS, I can vouch for the fact that AWD truly enhances the driving experience and performance, even in the dry.  In the wet, there's just no comparison.

I still giggle every time I accelerate through a corner so HAL can juggle things to reduce understeer.  That's just so wrong.

 

I will never buy a new Mazda until they have proven themselves to be able to build cars that won't dissolve before the payments are done.  Mazda3s are on the top of the list of the worst rusting cars made, which sucks because the same chassis made by a different company (Volvo C30/S40/V50) is on the top of the list of the most rust resistant.  So it is not a design flaw, it's a manufacuring fault.

Knurled.
Knurled. MegaDork
4/16/19 10:24 p.m.
Tony Sestito said:

People have been asking for this since they stopped making the MS3 in 2013. Hell, I've been asking for one too! Here's my concern: The current 3 can only be had with a stick in a loaded-up FWD-only hatch, and it's right around $28k. The 2.5 Turbo engine in other cars is well over the $30K threshold, and if they are going after the Golf R like the rumors say, this car will be close to $40k or more. The old MS3 in Grand Touring trim was right around $30k. This won't be a bargain performance car.

For that money, there are a lot of other cars I'd buy before one of these.

The biggest gripe I have against the Mazdaspeed 3 and 6, besides the rust, is that they were all manual-only.  Come on.  The same engine was available in a cute-ute with an automatic, why not the 6?  Turbos and torque converters are a no-brainer.

 

I note that Mazda is one of only three companies that makes the slap-shift manumatic shift in the CORRECT direction for enthusiasts - forward is down, back is up.

1 2
Our Preferred Partners
x4G4SVvyqhqeSV5M3jWqcGQniATE8fjTviUiEcd1Nwdepbpp3gDASh3gynYxT40c