Friday, July 15, 2016

Third-generation Mazda Axela/3 (2017 update)

2017 Mazda Axela

Mazda has been given the third-generation Axela (3 in world markets) some major updates for the 2017 model year and while there are few cosmetic treatments offered in its design, apart from its revised front grille, there has been big changes on the inside such as the addition of the 1.5L SKYACTIV-D diesel engine as seen on the Demio and CX-3 and the brand new SKYACTIV-VEHICLE DYNAMICS tech that will change the way how it handles.

How does Mazda's brand new G-Vectoring Control works on the new Mazda Axela? The G-Vectoring Control varies engine torque in response to steering inputs, subtly controlling lateral and longitudinal acceleration forces, which works like a traction control but it modulates the throttle to optimise vertical control on each wheel, making the car's dynamics more refined than the previous model. Pretty soon, this new technology will be applied in any other SKYACTIV Mazdas, even the next-generation CX-5 due very soon. In short, G-Vectoring Control delivers a healthy balance of response and stability depending on the load of the wheels.

Apart from its clever vehicle dynamics, the 2017 Axela features the similar SKYACTIV-D 1.5L diesel engine as seen on the Demio and CX-3. This engine produces 105PS of power and 270Nm of torque and it was mated with a 6-speed SKYACTIV-DRIVE automatic gearbox only. Fuel economy is around 21.6km/L based on JC08 Mode standards, .2km/L more efficient than the 2.2L diesel engine mated with a 6-speed manual and let's hope Mazda's honest about these figures.

But if you have fears about unfair diesels, don't worry because the Axela can still offered a SKYACTIV-G 1.5L petrol engine or the sedan-exclusive SKYACTIV-HYBRID variant which comes with a 2.0L petrol engine and a hybrid powertrain sourced from Toyota, delivering a 30.8km/L fuel economy fit enough for your next barkada trip.

Other features in the new Axela include optional i-ACTIV all-wheel drive, e-LOOP, i-Stop, i-DM, i-ACTIVSENSE safety systems, and many more.

Should you buy it? The new 2017 Axela starts from 1,760,400 to 3,310,200 Yen. That's a small price bump compared to the previous one but is it worth buying it? You'll never know until you tried the newly improved model packed with new dynamics that will make driving a little more interesting.

Photo: Mazda Motor Corporation

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