Could make its world debut in July.
Mazda has teased the 2016 Mazda Axela (otherwise known as 2016 Mazda 3 to the rest of the world) in a Japanese newspaper, suggesting that a launch is nearing. It could be introduced in other markets with the Mazda 3 badge later this year or early next year.
Last month, a leaked image of the 2016 Mazda 3 brochure had surfaced online, revealing the changes made to its exterior. The facelift is subtle in nature, featuring a slightly redesigned grille with a repositioned Mazda logo and chrome extensions that flow into the new headlamp clusters instead of above them, as well as an updated bumper with sleeker turn indicators and foglamps. The ORVMs now incorporate turn signals too.
An interior spyshot of a 2016 Mazda 3 test mule in China has revealed slight design tweaks to the steering wheel and the Commander Control unit and gear selector repositioned closer to the centre console. Another significant change is the replacement of the manual handbrake for an electronic parking brake.
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The teaser talks about the introduction of the 1.5L SKYACTIV-D diesel engine in the 2016 Mazda Axela. Available in the Euro-spec Mazda 3, it produces 105 PS (77 kW/104 hp) at 4,000 rpm and 270 Nm of torque from 1,600-2,500 rpm. Transmission options include a 6-speed manual and automatic gearboxes.
It is likely to retain the current engine lineup as well, which includes the 111 PS 1.5 SKYACTIV-G petrol and 2.2L SKYACTIV-D diesel engine with 175 PS.