2012 MAZDA3 SKYACTIV
Mazda has today revealed its new SkyActiv-G petrol angine, and the new SkyActiv-Drive automatic transmission, at this week's Toronto Auto Show in Canada.
The Mazda3 will be the first production model to feature the new engine and transmission technology, and coming with the upgrade, Mazda has also revealed a styling update for the 2012 Mazda3.
Among the styling tweaks are new front and rear bumpers, including a redesigned front grille, foglight bezels and headlights.
Although Mazda has yet to reveal full technical details and performance figures for the new SkyActiv-G engine, It was revealed last year that the small 1.3 litre version of the engine will use just 3.3 l/100km of petrol - down from 5.4 l/100km of the company's current 1.3 litre engine used in Japan.
In Australia, Mazda's 1.5 litre engine, which powers the Mazda2, uses 6.4 l/100km of petrol in manual guise.
Mazda has also confirmed that its SkyActiv-G petrol engine will use a high 14:1 compression ratio. Thanks to the use of a longer 4-2-1 exhaust manifold, direct injection and a specially-designed piston head, a reduction in residual gas in the cylinder ensures knocking and pinging are kept out.
Through the development of its SkyActiv engines and transmissions, along with newer more efficient models and construction methods, Mazda aims to improve its average fleet fuel economy by 30 percent compared to 2008 levels.
Other technologies that will join the SkyActiv engines and transmissions over the coming years will include idle-stop, regenerative braking and hybrid systems.
Mazda's new SkyActiv-G petrol engine, and the SkyActiv-Drive automatic transmission, are expected to debut with the updated Mazda3 later this year, joined in 2012 by a replacement for the CX-7 - likely based on Mazda's upcoming Minagi concept - also featuring the new technology.