Mazda’s 6 plus 2 add up to great new models...
WITH great styling (shades of Lexus and Jaguar) one of the best-looking mediumsized motors to come out in 2015 is this week’s first test car – the Mazda 6.
It went on sale in February and I predict we will be seeing a lot on our roads as the 6 offers a lot of style and equipment from just £19,795 on-the-road.
Featuring improved standard spec throughout the range, top of the list of new attractions for 2015 are DAB radio, a seven-inch colour touch-screen ‘Multimedia Commander’ with integrated navigation plus new technologically-enhanced features including adaptive LED headlights, lane assist and driver attention alert, blind spot monitoring with rear cross- traffic alert and ‘Smart City Brake Support’.
Mazda say standard equipment levels across the entire range have been improved plus there’s ‘enhanced’ interior and exterior design, improved functionality and better ride, comfort and quietness.
There are now five grades - SE, SE Nav, SE-L, SE-L Nav and Sport Nav – with a choice of nine diesel and seven petrol saloon variants and nine diesel and three petrol tourer versions, equipped with either six-speed manual or automatic transmissions. Eight body colours are available.
All models now include Mazda’s first electronic parking brake, that new seven-inch, full- colour central touch-screen with DAB radio – another first for Mazda – and MZD Connect which, paired with a smartphone, makes for easier internet connectivity and access to social networking services.
Top-of-the-range Sport Nav models (our test car) benefit from new exterior features including a re-styled front – new grille and signature wing design incorporating powerful LED headlights amd daytime running lights, LED front fog lights and new 19-inch bright alloy wheels.
On board, a six-way power adjustable front passenger seat, a new head-up display (which projects speed and sat-nav information onto a small glass screen which rises up ahead of the driver as you start up) a rear reversing camera and an ‘ Integrated Navigation’ system complete the Sport Nav model’s enhanced standard equipment specification.
All models get a new dashboard layout and there’s keyless entry and start.
Our test car was the 2.2 diesel with a superb six-speed auto box (Mazda do great automatics) and it proved idea for the task of getting me to Heathrow Airport in a relaxed mood and in time to catch a long-haul flight to test Jeep Cherokees in the Utah desert.
Particularly so as the 6’s 2.2D has 175bhp on tap, which means a 0-62 time of 8.4 seconds and 134mph top speed – not that I needed it. Also handy was the fact that mpg figures for the 6 diesel are almost 60 on the combined cycle – which meant no stopping for fuel and the 62- litre tank was still a quarter full after the 400-mile plus round trip
Other ticks in the box for the 6 saloon are a huge boot and loads of rear legroom... and our test car came with particularly classy two-tone cream and black leather upholstery.
The only negative I could find was that, as with a number of Japanese-made cars, the sat nav is still not completely postcode friendly – but that is just a minor niggle in an otherwise totally excellent long-distance cruiser.
I have always thought previous Mazda 6 models were underrated, but I suspect that will not be the case with this latest version.
The range starts at £ 19,795 for the 2.0- litre petrol SE up to £27,995 for our top-of-the-range 2.2D 175ps Sport Nav Auto test car, which also had optional pearlescent paint and upgraded leather trim taking the total on-the-road cost to £ 28,735.
More information at www.mazda.co.uk