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Mike Stevens | Nov 28, 2008

While it’s not uncommon for carmakers to reveal artwork and models from the concept stages of their cars, they’ll often wait until it’s time to release some sort of anniversary book chronicling the history of that particular model. They definitely don’t reveal them mere days and weeks after unveiling the final production version of the car, or for that matter, its hatch sibling.

Perhaps then it might be fair to say that the boys and girls at Mazda are so proud of the latest Mazda3 Sedan, that it just felt right to say, “We reckon this car’s so spot-on, we’ll even let you see the designs that didn’t make the cut.” Maybe they said it in Japanese, I don’t know. Either way, click through to see the handful of sketches and rendered concepts that Mazda decided just weren’t good enough.

Some of the concepts are precisely that; conceptual brainwaves intended to push the boundaries of what can be done with automotive design. The kind of thing that while inappropriate for a final production car, often lends itself to the discovery of new, viable options for a real road-going car.

2010-Mazda3-concept-21

Others, while stunning and beautifully aggressive, have too much potential to limit the market appeal of the car. As much as it would probably be the most unique looking car in its class, how many grandmothers and librarians would buy it?

2010-Mazda3-concept-18

Mind you, not every one of these concepts was rejected. As with the below image, it’s easy to see which concepts came later in the process, their more accessible and distinctly 2009 Mazda family styling a sure sign that by this stage, the process is almost complete.

2010-Mazda3-concepts-6

Thanks for the tip, Adam!

But wait, there’s more. Here’s photos of the clay model being carved and digitised by Mazda’s designers and engineers.

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