Happy 4th of July! We, the team from Neotrucks blog are hoping you’re enjoying your days off work. If you have any, that is.
We are busy as always finding the interesting stuff from the automotive world just for you. After the turbulent week, another hot Friday is upon us…
Longly Awaited Mazda3 2014
We’ll start our story with a small car that’s made a lot of success around the world albeit its biggest adversaries are Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic. Maybe you haven’t seen much Mazda 3 cars on the town roads and highways in the U.S. but that is not because it’s a worse car.
Since its introduction in 2004, model 3 (also known as the Mazda Axela in Japan) has gained a lot of appraising from the automotive press. Its design (both interior and exterior), handling and performance were highly rated. Although considered to be an affordable small car, it surpassed the expectations from both customers and professionals.
It was the second best-selling car in Canada in 2006, the best selling car in Israel during two consecutive years (2005-2007) and also the best selling car in Australia in 2011 and 2012. Fate of Mazda 3 in Australia for this year is yet to be known because of the Toyota Corolla’s growth in sales during the last two months. To be honest, being able to compete with the (probably) best-selling car in the world is already an acknowledgement of Mazda3′s value.
Last few years for Mazda were marked by the introduction of the newly-developed SkyActiv technology. The main goals were to increase the mpg rate and get the maximum possible output from the engine. There’s an official Mazda Website with more information regarding the advantages of SkyActiv technology implementation.
How Will the New Mazda 3 Look Like
And so the third generation of model 3 was introduced to us few days ago. After the presentation of new Mazda6, we finally got to see its smaller cousin.
According to Mazda officials, during the last 10 years of Mazda3′s existence, two generations of the car were sold in 3.6 million units. First generation (2003-2009) found 2.2 million buyers while second scored 1.4 million units sold worldwide. Furthermore they emphasized that Mazda3 won 136 various awards.
Third generation bears an obvious resemblance to the bigger Mazda6. But except for the new looks, our attention was drawn by the bigger interior space, new equipment and engine variants. Dimensions are slightly changed compared to the older models. Now a little bit of numbers. It’s a 14’8 long, 5’10 wide and 4’9 tall car with a wheelbase 8’10 in length. Also there is more space for passengers in the back of the car and the trunk can accommodate more of stuff so you don’t have to worry about where to put all of your personal belongings. Mazda3 will be available with wheels ranging from 16 to 18 inches. The drag coefficient is 0.275.
When it comes to engines, in the beginning there will be four options. Those who care about fuel economy or simply prefer diesel cars won’t have too much choice because there will be only one diesel variant – the SkyActiv-D 2.2. This engine can produce as much as 110 kW/150 hp at 4500 rpm. The more conventional petrol engine has three, also SkyActiv versions – SkyActiv-G 1.5 with 74 kW/100 hp @6000 rpm, then SkyActiv-G 2.0 (88kW/120 hp @6000 rpm) and the toughest one, the SkyActiv-G 2.0 with 121 kW/145 hp @6000 rpm. All of these engines will be supported by six-speed manual or automatic transmission. Although the Mazda company has something of an aversion towards the alternative fuel cars, they confirmed that a hybrid version will also be available for sale (though not for the American market).
Is this Mazda3 a game changer for the company? Nothing is for sure, but quality and especially the price (expected around $25k) would make me stand in a line and wait to buy myself one. Just look at the promotional video. It’s really one beautiful car!
Ford: ATLAS to Hold the Earth and Tremor to Shake It
How is Ford F-150 Tremor Going to Shake the Earth
In its long history of car making, Ford Motors company always put their customers in the first place. That’s how you get your pickup truck the top of the list of best-selling automotive vehicles in the U.S. for 28 straight years. Not to mention the big rivalry between the owners of Dodge Ram, Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra, Ford F-150, Nissan Titan and other trucks of the same category.
Reliability, strength, dependability and a good marketing strategy – those were always the F-series’ trademarks. But to stay on top of the sales list, you would need even more than that. Constant updates are necessary in order to stay in line with the best. That’s the reason behind Ford’s announcement of a new sport pickup truck, Ford F-150 Tremor. It will be interesting to see how successful sales of this new truck are going to be in California because it seems to me that the name was chosen on purpose.
Because the sales are always very dependent on the price level, it will be hard to guess the sales volume of F-150 Tremor since the guys from Ford didn’t give us any idea of price. The only thing we’ve got was the information that it will cost less than F-150 Raptor (around $45k). But we don’t have a clue how much less. With a new EcoBoost 3.5-liter turbocharged V6 engine able of delivering 365 hp @5000 rpm and 420 lb-ft @2500 rpm of torque, we can expect some pretty great performance. Other than that Tremor will include a 4.10 rear axle, an electronic-locking rear differential, the FX Appearance Package (along with some other makeup stuff), HID headlamps and SYNC with MyFord Touch connectivity system. For quality traction and partially for beauty, Tremor got 20 inch wheels. A nice gallery of photos can be found on this link. But if you prefer a video, here’s a link to a video from the Ford F-150 Tremor announcement.
Ford F-150 Tremor is meant to be an upscale model pickup truck that’s almost powerful as V8 F-150, but with essentially better gas mileage. Because F-150 is still highly positioned on markets today, I doubt that Tremor won’t be a success, but just remember Ford’s and Harley-Davidson’s cooperation. Nothing is certain. We’ll see later this year when it hits the market
2015 Ford Atlas: A Concept Truck That Takes Your Breath Away. Instantly.
I must admit that I am getting pretty impatient about Ford’s new F-line although its introduction is not going to happen any time soon. But while I am waiting and trying to imagine how it is going to look, I am getting the impression that the Ford Atlas concept truck will serve as the design starting point. Though I am not completely satisfied with this video on You Tube (it’s not because of its quality but because how much is shown), I must say that Atlas looks titanic – huge, strong and intimidating. Just watching it while it slowly moves can make your heart beat accelerate.
The Ford’s officials claim that Atlas will feature a new generation of EcoBoost powertrain. Except for increased power and fuel efficiency, one of the key features of the new engine will be its ability to shut off the engine when the driver is stopped in traffic and suspending the feature when it’s needed (when it’s towing or carrying heavier loads). This engine combined with other equipment that will be included in the truck are supposed to constitute a system with multiple benefits. Whether you want to use it as a towing vehicle, a city car, a vehicle for a road trip or you are a passionate off-roader, it is meant to suit your specific needs.
I am regularly checking on the progress of Atlas concept on this Website, so I suggest you too check it out. No worries if you’re not the Ford’s greatest fan, but I think you’ll get to like this one.