Mazda made a host of improvements to its compact Mazda3 for the 2020 model year, which were focused on new standard safety and driver-assistance technologies and the addition of available all-wheel drive.
The company is making further updates to the car for 2021, but this time there will be more available power from a new engine. Both the Mazda3 sedan and hatchback will be available with a turbocharged 2.5L I-4, but the company still will offer the non-turbo 2.5L as standard.
Mazda says the ’21 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo will deliver 250 hp and 320 lb.-ft. (434 Nm) of torque using premium fuel. Those numbers dip to 227 hp and 310 lb.-ft. (420 Nm) of with regular fuel. All-wheel drive will be standard for the new turbocharged model.
Two trim levels are available: the Premium Plus package and the Appearance Package. Premium Plus includes a front air dam and rear roof spoiler, while the Appearance Package comes with a rear diffuser and side sill extensions.
There is no word yet on standard features, but the ’20 Mazda3 came with advanced safety technology such as blindspot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, smart brake support, automatic high- beam headlights, lane-departure alert system, lane-keep assist, driver attention alert and adaptive front headlights that can “curve” to the road ahead.
Those features helped the ’20 Mazda3 hatchback and sedan both earn Top Safety Pick+ awards from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
The new Mazda3 2.5 Turbo (pictured below) is expected to reach dealers in late 2020. Pricing for the sedan will start at $30,845 after a $945 destination fee, while the hatchback will start at $31,845. Fully loaded, the 2.5 Turbo will sell for $34,695. Options, which can be added individually, start at $918.
The updates for 2021 move the Mazda3 further toward premium territory, both in price and equipment. With the new engine on board and options added, the car’s price tag can approach $40,000.
Those prices are higher than the current Mazda3, but the company has lowered prices for the standard car by $1,000, to start at $21,445. The Mazda3 is available with a manual transmission, but only on the naturally aspirated car, and only for the hatchback Premium trim, which has a starting price of $28,795.
Interested buyers can register on Mazda’s website now and receive email updates as the car moves toward its release.