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Report: Mazda to introduce new model of Mazda3 with SKYACTIV technologies in North America in second half of fiscal year

The Nikkei reports that Mazda Motor Corp. will incorporate its SKYACTIV technologies (earlier post) in a new model of the Mazda3 subcompact to be released in the North American market in the second half of the current fiscal year, which ends March 2012.

SKYACTIV is the umbrella term for Mazda’s range of next-generation technologies—including gasoline and diesel engines, transmissions, and a new body and chassis—that significantly improve vehicle driving dynamics as well as environmental and safety performance.

In May, Mazda unveiled the SKYACTIV-G 1.3 direct-injection 1.3-liter gasoline engine—the first SKYACTIV unit being applied to a production vehicle (the facelifted Mazda Demio, known outside of Japan as the Mazda2).

Despite the relative strength of the yen, Mazda wants to get this value-added technology into the North American market to shore up revenues, which have suffered because of interrupted production after the Tohoku earthquake and reduced inventories on car lots.

The new Mazda3 with its fuel-sipping engine and more-efficient transmission is expected to offer 30% better fuel economy than the existing model. Mazda also plans to release a new model of its CX-5 sport utility vehicle with SkyActiv technologies in 2012.


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