Update: The new Mazda 3 hatchback is expected to be revealed in the summer and make its debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show 2013 in September. The release date of the new 3 would be towards the end of 2013 or early in 2014.
Our first spy pictures of the new Mazda 3 reveal a front-end similar to the new Mazda 6, featuring sharp headlights and a large ‘shield’ grille.
Slightly more difficult to make out is the crease running from the front wheelarch, just underneath the wing mirrors and across the doors. There’s also an upwards flick at the bottom of each flank, too.
To get a better idea of how the final production car will shape up you can take a look at some digital renderings of the model that were sent anonymously to the Auto Express office.
The images show Mazda is planning to continue with the same range structure as the current car – offering a five-door hatch and a four-door saloon. The latter will compete with the forthcoming Audi A3 saloon, while the hatchback will face stiff competition from the new VW Golf.
Strong wheelarches and an upswept crease mark out the sides, while the rear gets floating tail-light clusters for a clean, uncluttered look.
All of Mazda’s upcoming models are built with the firm’s SkyActiv technology, which aims to cut as much weight as possible, while also improving efficiency. Expect to see lots of high tensile steel and a range of new economical engines.
A 1.6-litre diesel emitting under 90g/km is certainly on the cards, cars are likely to have engine stop-start and Mazda could be planning a future hot hatch version to replace the current Mazda 3 MPS.