From Mazda press: In sync with consumers' mindset-change toward affordable, efficient, yet high-quality automobiles, Mazda presents the all-new 2010 MAZDA3. This redefined, reengineered, and restyled sport compact climbs atop its predecessor's tall shoulders to deliver improved appearance and performance, fresh features, and an unmatched level of refinement.
Like all Mazdas, the 2010 MAZDA3 has the soul of a sports car, ensuring that driving enjoyment is a top priority.
Mazda's MZR engine family is widely regarded as one of the world's most advanced forms of fuel-efficient, high-energy propulsion. As before there are two distinct MZR four-cylinder engines available in the MAZDA3, both of which offer outstanding performance and efficiency.
MAZDA3 i models are fitted with the MZR 2.0-liter engine, providing 148 hp at 6500 rpm and 135 lb-ft of torque at 4500 rpm. It features compact and light aluminum block and head construction with two chain-driven overhead camshafts operating four valves per cylinder for complete combustion, maximum efficiency, and minimal exhaust emissions. (PZEV versions of this engine, sold in California and select other states, produces 144 hp @ 6500 rpm and 132 lb-ft of torque at 4500 rpm.) Variable intake valve timing provides robust low-rpm performance with strong high rpm pull, all the way to the 6500 rpm redline.
A light-weight nylon-reinforced intake manifold offers dual-mode flexibility with runner lengths ideally suited to both low- and high-rpm operation. A new front-mounted air pickup system feeds the 2.0-liter engine cooler air for combustion.
Two transmissions are offered in the MAZDA3 i: a smooth-shifting manual box or a sophisticated, electronically controlled automatic with a manual-shift mode. Both are fitted with five forward speeds.
Engine calibration changes and aerodynamic improvements yield a gain over the outgoing model of one mpg in both city and highway driving with the manual transmission (25 city, 33 highway). The wider ratio spread provided by the new five-speed automatic enhances both acceleration and mileage. On EPA test cycles, the MAZDA3 i automatic achieves 24 mpg in city driving-a two mpg improvement-and 33 on the highway-an impressive three mpg (10 percent) gain over the 2009 model.