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2014 Mazda Mazda6 Preview

 
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2014 Mazda Mazda6

The 2014 Mazda6 has been in production for almost a month, but only now has Mazda released all the details on the new car. The vehicle, which is due in showrooms early next year, is the second of a new generation of Mazdas that feature fuel-saving SKYACTIV technology and the ‘KODO - Soul of Motion’ design theme. In case you were wondering, the first was the CX-5 compact SUV.

Two powertrain options have been revealed thus far on the 2014 Mazda6, both of them four-cylinder gasoline engines. They include a SKYACTIV-G 2.0-liter rated at 134 horsepower and 155 pound-feet of torque, and a SKYACTIV-G 2.5-liter rated at 189 horsepower and 189 pound-feet of torque.

While both engines feature Mazda’s i-stop engine stop-start technology, the bigger unit also features Mazda’s i-ELOOP brake energy recovery system. Essentially a mild-hybrid system that uses lightweight capacitors to store electrical energy recovered from braking (instead of batteries), the i-ELOOP system takes some of the load off the car’s engine by using this stored energy to power ancillary features such as the air conditioning, audio system and lights.

Mazda says i-ELOOP can improve fuel economy by up to ten percent in stop-and-go driving, and when combined with other fuel-saving technologies like lighter body construction and the SKYACTIV powertrains, the new Mazda6 could certainly end up being one of the most fuel-efficient models in its class. We’re expecting highway figures in excess of 35 mpg. A six-speed automatic is available with both engines.

Further down the track we’re expecting the launch of a hybrid model and eventually a diesel, though Mazda is yet to confirm either model. Final specifications for the U.S. will be disclosed closer to next year’s launch.

The new Mazda6 features MacPherson struts up front and a multi-link setup for the rear suspension. Its steering relies on electric power assistance, rather than hydraulic, helping to further saving fuel by taking some of the load off the engine. More fuel saving features include a slippery coefficient of drag of just 0.26 Cd, as well as the use of ultra-high tensile steel in the body, which requires less materials for the construction. Despite this, torsional rigidity is said to have been increased by about 30 percent over the previous model.

Inside, there's a driver-oriented cockpit, with soft materials used for most the frequently touched areas, such as the door trims and upper dash. Thanks to a 4.1-inch longer wheelbase, interior space is up, especially rear legroom. Cargo space is a reasonable 17 cubic feet. Load-luggers will be interested to note that Mazda has also launched a wagon variant for its 2014 Mazda6, though this is yet to be confirmed for the U.S.

For more on the 2014 Mazda Mazda6, including buying info, head over to our sister site The Car Connection.

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