A new employee reward option became available to fleets when Mazda North American Operations announced the addition of the turbocharged Skyactiv-G 2.5L four-cylinder engine to the 2021 Mazda3 powertrain offering. This marks the launch of the fourth generation Mazda3 and it is available in four-door sedan and five-door hatchback body styles. The big news for 2021 is the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo, which is available in standard and the Premium Plus package. It is the same turbocharged four-cylinder engine found in the Mazda6, CX-5, and CX-9 models.
AF had an opportunity to test drive the 2021 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo all-wheel-drive sedan equipped with the Premium Plus package. The Skyactiv 2.5L Turbo delivers 227 horsepower and 310 lb.-ft. of torque on regular fuel. A standard 6-speed automatic feeds power to all four wheels through the AWD system.
Based on several days behind the wheel, the Mazda3 was a fun vehicle to drive. It is nimble for weaving in and out of traffic and the turbo provides the boost needed to safely merge into fast-moving freeway traffic. The electric-power assisted steering provides for precise cornering, turns, and makes parallel parking a breeze. The Mazda3 offers comfortable front-passenger seating and a spacious interior to work within.
The Mazda3 meets many fleet applications by allowing the 60/40 split fold-down that provides ample room to carry sales materials, point of sales displays, and other collateral materials.
The AWD model is ideal for fleet use in snow belt states or mountainous terrain and offers good fuel economy with an EPA 23 mpg city/32 highway/27 combined.
The Mazda3 2.5 Turbo with the Premium Plus Package comes standard with Mazda Connected Services. This service allows drivers to use a mobile app to perform actions such as lock/unlock doors; remotely start and stop the vehicle; locate the vehicle; view fuel and oil levels, tire pressure, maintenance reminders, and service scheduling; receive alerts when vehicle is unlocked; send destinations directly to the vehicle’s navigation system; and receive over the air updates for the vehicle’s infotainment system.
Suite of Safety Equipment
The Mazda3 2.5 Turbo includes standard i-Activsense safety technologies such as Mazda Radar Cruise Control with stop and go function, Smart Brake Support, Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning with Lane-Keep Assist, Driver Attention Alert, Adaptive Front-lighting system, and High Beam Control. Additional standard equipment include LED daytime running lights, automatic on/off LED signature headlights, and rain-sensing windshield wipers.
The Premium Plus trim includes three new i-Activsense driving-assistance technologies. They include a Traffic Jam Assist enhancement to the adaptive cruise control, which provides steering assistance at speeds below 40 mph. Since parking lot accident are frequent in fleet applications, there is a high-definition surround-view camera 360 degree View Monitor. Also, Rear Smart City Brake Support with Rear Cross-Traffic Braking automatically apply the brakes when the vehicle is in reverse if an obstacle or a crossing vehicle is detected.