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The long-loved Mazda3 is getting a minor makeover for the 2018 model year, but don’t expect to see much different on the exterior. Most of the notable changes will take place under the hood, according to CarsDirect. The new and improved 3 will gain new active features as well as some updated engine options.

Both the four-door sedan and the five-door hatchback will carry over for the new model year, while the Grand Touring model will gain Bi-LED headlights with auto-leveling, and a combination of LED taillights and LED daytime running lights. Touring versions of the sedan will now come standard with a lip spoiler.

2017 Mazda3
2017 Mazda3

The Touring trim will gain a more powerful 2.5-liter engine producing 184 horsepower (137 kilowatts), while the lower-trim Sport model will use the same 2.0-liter engine producing 155 hp (115 kW). All trims will come paired to a standard six-speed manual transmission, with a six-speed automatic available as a $1,050 option. Also gone is the $800 i-Eloop regenerative braking option in the Grand Touring trim.

A new low-speed automatic emergency braking system dubbed Smart City Brake will be added to the range as an option on most trims. The system reportedly works at speeds of up to 19 miles per hour (30 kmh), and will come standard on Sport models. Touring trim adds features like blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.

The 2018 Mazda3 is already available at most dealerships, and comes with a starting price of $18,970 for the manual sedan. The hatchback is a bit pricier starting at $20,220 with a manual, an extra $250 over the previous year. The most expensive model, the Grand Touring, starts at $25,620 for the manual sedan, and $26,370 for the hatchback.

Source: CarsDirect

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Note: 2017 Mazda3 / Mazda6 Pictured

Gallery: 2017 Mazda3, Mazda6 U.S. Spec

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