A stylish, four-door sedan with a sporty feel, the Mazda Mazda 6 or Mazda 6 is one of the company’s best-selling creations. Released in 2002, it was designed to replace the Mazda 626. Because of its stylish design, fuel-efficient engine, and sporty feel, it is considered as the first vehicle to embody Mazda’s “Stylish, Insightful, and Spirited” philosophy. Today, it continues to attract plenty of car buyers and Mazda fans. As a matter of fact, more than 1 million Mazda 6 units have been sold since it was introduced in 2002.
2002-2008: First generation
The first-generation model was available as a five-door estate (Sport Wagon), a five-door hatchback (5-Door), and a four-door sedan (Sport Sedan). The engine it uses is a Mazda MZR available in 1.8 L, 2.0 L, and 2.3 L configurations. The exquisite craftsmanship, fuel efficiency, and reliable engine have earned this model several awards. One year after its release, it was 2nd place in the 2003 European Car of the Year awards. It also made the 2003 top 10 list of Car and Driver.
A high-performance version, the Mazdaspeed 6, was released in 2006. This upgraded model features a turbo-charged 2.3 L MZR 14, a powerful engine capable of producing 272 PS or 274 hp. As proof of its power, Car and Driver tested this vehicle and was able to reach 0 to 60 mph within 5.4 seconds. The engine also uses a direct fuel injection system and is engineered according to the Euro 5 emissions standards. It features a raised hold, an all-wheel drive, and a six-speed manual transmission. It’s available in two trims: the Grand Touring, which features a standard automatic climate control, a leather interior, and a keyless ignition, and the Sport trim, which features a standard key ignition and fabric interior.
2007-2012: Second generation
Introduced in 2007 at the annual Frankfurt Auto Show held every September, the second-generation Mazda 6 is actually based on the chassis platform of the Mazda GH. This model is also available in three styles: a wagon, a 5-door hatchback, and a 4-door sedan. However, a sedan model is the only available body style in North America. Among its improvements over the previous generation is a more responsive, electrically assisted steering system. As proof of its incredible engine power, a 0-to-60 mph speed was achieved in 6.1 seconds by Motor Trend. In 2010, the upgraded Mazda 6 earned the Family Car of the Year from What Car? magazine.
2012-present: Third generation
Now on its third generation, the all-new Mazda 6 was introduced in 2012 at the Moscow International Motor Show. Two versions are currently available: a five-door station wagon and a four-door sedan. However, the wagon is no longer sold in the US most probably because of CAFE regulations. Standard features include a 2.5 L, 184 hp SkyActiv engine, alloy wheels, keyless entry, and a hands-free telephone system. Because of its stylish look, it was a 2013 World Design of the Year finalist.