Diesel “warm-hatches” are slowly gaining acceptance in Europe, where cars such as the Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra already have high-output oil-burners. Mazda plans to join them with their own version, likely to be badged “D Sport.” The current diesel range is limited to 90hp and 108hp 1.6L engines, hardly fitting of the Japanese company’s zoom-zoom image, reports Auto Express. The new engine will be the same 2.0L model found in the Mazda6 and developing 143hp and 360Nm. Though it develops 120hp less than the Mazdaspeed3 (also called the Mazda3 MPS in some markets), it develops 100Nm more in torque.
This engine will be mated to a six-speed manual, and will cover the 0-100km/h sprint in 8.5 seconds, but should achieve 55mpg. 2007 could be the year of the true diesel hot-hatch, with Renault and Toyota both releasing 170hp+ diesel hatches.