Leading edge

2008 Mazda6
Date:30 September 2008 Tags:,

2008 Mazda6

Once again, Mazda proves that a family sedan doesn’t need to drive like one.

The new Mazda6 still has our favourite quality: it’s a hoot to drive. That will help it stand out from its foes in the market-place, as will its size. The Mazda6 is longer than last year’s model by almost 18 cm, and that translates into quite a bit more cabin space. To handle the new girth, Mazda upped the power of both the base engine and the V6. When connected to the standard six-speed manual, the 127 kW four-cylinder delivers about 11,5 litres/100 km city and 8 litres/100 km highway. The 3,7-litre 202 kW V6 returns 13,5 litres/100 km city and 10 litres/ 100 km highway. We’re tempted to sacrifice economy for power here. If the Four feels peppy, the V6 is downright intoxicating. The six-speed automatic with manual shift mode has an active adaptive-shift strategy that can sense winding road conditions and holds ratios longer. It’s brilliant. In a class dominated by blas design, the Mazda6 is the style leader. And going bigger and heavier didn’t affect this car’s zip or nimbleness one bit. It remains closer to a sport sedan than any of its family-sedan competitors.

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