• Nov 29, 2007

The current Mazdaspeed6 has good performance, an attainable price point, and aggressive (if slightly homely) looks, but it hasn't exactly set the world on fire on the showroom floor. Part of the problem is that car buyers can get 268 hp Camrys and Accords with near-equal performance and superior fuel economy. The Speed6 weighs as much as a Sherman tank, too. We were hoping that the next edition of the Speed6 would succeed where the current generation didn't, but it doesn't look like there will be a next time. Mazda6 program manager Ryuichi Umeshita points out that the next 6 will be larger in the US than in other regions, which means Mazda would be paying for two different development programs. Any Speed6 would play for a smaller audience too, since the US edition would need different tuning than Europe/Australia and vice-versa. In the end, Umeshita basically said that he doesn't see big enough potential demand to make a Speed edition worth Mazda's time and money.

On the bright side, even though the next Mazda6 will be roomier and more refined than the model it replaces, it will also likely keep its zoom zoom character. The brilliant engineers at Mazda took an MPS minivan platform and created the large yet fun to drive CX-9, so it's fairly safe to expect good things of the next 6. Besides, if Mazda can wrestle from Ford the same 273 hp 3.7L V6 used in the CX-9, then any turbo talk will likely be in-material anyway.

[Source: GoAuto via Motor Authority]



I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 43 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      Shame we are not getting the world car. Probably will prevent me from buying one as it will undoubtedly weigh more and ride softer and have flat seats for fat asses... Just as every other brand has killed its "Euro" cars here.

      What is funny is they took a car that wasn't super-competitive, blamed the wrong reasons, and then made an even worse choice- to become even more conventional. Probably too much focus-testing.

      They should have dropped the rotary in there. That is what Mazda is known for and there is no reason it should be confined to just the RX series.
        • 7 Years Ago
        There's no reason to keep this motor from any other model. Well, except for its absolute lack of torque. And its bad emissions. And its terrible efficiency.

        The only thing the Mazda rotary is good for is spinning at high revs in a super lightweight car. It simply won't work for anything else.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I own a Speed6 and cannot say enough about the cars performance value (paid $23.4k). IMHO one of the major reasons it did not sell well was because it was only offered with a 6spd (no complaint here) and has somewhat quirky looks...which I personally like. The car outperforms nearly every car in it's class and has a "fun factor" that few cars can claim. As far as being overweight or heavy as a "sherman tank"...I ask, compared to what?? Wrap the safety of AWD, traction control, great brakes, side front and rear airbags and even the Camry and Accord V6's can't compete. Frankly, I like the fact that it is a relatively rare, limited production car...although admittedly that's probably the reason the next generation Speed6 will never make over to our shores. Bottom line...I'm dissapointed the new Speed6 may not happen, but understand why it wouldn't.

      As a side note the MS3 will likely never get AWD because it would simply be too heavy as "sport compact" and would tip the scales somewhere in the neighborhood of 3400-3450lbs...not too mention being considerable more expensive than it's FWD rivals.
      • 7 Years Ago
      if it makes room for an AWD mazdaspeed3, then I say go for it.
      I drove the speed6 and was very impressed. it was much, much smoother and more refined than the speed3. It handles better than the legacy GT (IMO), and felt just as fast to me.
      It may sound like an odd gripe, but the lack of a fold-down rear seat kinda killed it for me.

        • 7 Years Ago
        Mazda didn't advertise it, but if you remove the lining behind the rear seats in the trunk, you can get to the seat release handles. It is the same 60/40 split as in the base 6, only there is some diagonal structural bracing which prohibits larger objects from fitting through.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Blame the dealers for this one. When I bought my wife her Mazda3 the dealer had one MS3 and a couple MS6 that they were hoping to gouge people on. For the MS3 they wanted $30k and the MS6 was similarly priced.
      • 7 Years Ago
      So we ARE getting a bigger version of the car??? Pathetic
        • 7 Years Ago
        Makes sense, with the Mazda3 growing as well. Besides, I enjoy the looks of the new design. :)
      • 7 Years Ago
      The 3.7L that is in the CX-9 is Hiroshima sourced and not from Ford. Ford does not want to share the 3.5L V6 that's currently in the Fusion/Milan/Zephyr (MKZ) with the Mazda 6. That is the reason why the new Mazda 6 is getting the 3.7L instead of the 3.5L.

      It's truly a bummer that there likely will not be another MazdaSpeed 6. If they can manage to crank out 270+ horses and AWD, then I imagine the enthusiast community will find ways to turbo or supercharge the engine anyway.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Ford's 3.5L Duratec is NOT in the Fusion and Milan, it's in the Edge/Taurus/Sable/MKZ. The Fusion and Milan still have the original 3.0L Duratec that was a holdover from the previous Taurus/Sable and the Five-Hundred. The Fusion and Milan aren't slated to get the 3.5L until the next iteration of those vehicles.

        The 3.7L is a bored version of the 3.5L Duratec, which is Hiroshima built, but was designed by Ford. Ford doesn't want Mazda to have the 3.5L yet, but is giving Mazda the 3.7L for use in the new Mazda 6 and the CX-9.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Gary, again, THIS IS NOT A MAZDA 3.7L. This is a Ford designed, Hiroshima built 3.7L, which is being used on MAZDA vehicles built in JAPAN. The 3.7L engine used in Ford/Lincoln/Mercury products is the SAME engine, produced DOMESTICALLY, at the Lima, Ohio plant.

        The 3.5/3.7L "Cyclone" engine is currently used in the following vehicles:
        2007 Mazda CX-9 (MZI)
        2007 Ford Edge
        2007 Lincoln MKX
        2007 Lincoln MKZ
        2008 Ford Taurus
        2008 Ford Taurus X
        2008 Mercury Sable

        It will be expanded next year to be used in:
        2009 Ford Fusion
        2009 Mercury Milan
        2009 Ford Flex
        2009 Ford Mustang
        • 7 Years Ago
        Bad writing on my part.

        The current MazdaSpeed 6 cranks out around 270 horses now. What I was trying to say is that if there is no new MazdaSpeed 6, then the enthusiast community will take the new 3.7L V6 (w/AWD if its available) and supercharge/turbocharge the new engine for 300+ horses on their own.

        And, you're right, it wouldn't take a MazdaSpeed 6 for people to try and force feed them. The enthusiast communtiy was already doing it on the current Mazda 6i and Mazda 6s before the MazdaSpeed variant came along.
      ronin
      • 7 Years Ago
      I thought it was always understood that the Speed 6 would only be around for a couple years, that tarting it up was sort of an end-of-life kicker in Mazda tradition.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I recently turned in my leased MS6 a couple months back. Here are some thoughts from having owned one:

      1) Appearance-wise, the car was fairly tame for a performance-oriented model, though that's one of the reasons I liked it. Others might expect something more extroverted looks for their $$$. The stealth factor was unbelievable in this car. I shocked a few 5-series drivers. ;)

      2) Price-wise, I think Mazda will have trouble selling any 4 door sedan in the $30-33K range because that encroaches on Audi/BMW/Mercedes territory and Mazda doesn't have the badge allure that these other brands do for those who care. That would partially explain why I got such a smokin' deal on this car: purchased at invoice minus $500 minus a $3,500 rebate and a big lease incentive. I had the lease payment of a Corolla or a stripped Jetta. I have no idea if/how Mazda made anything off the deal...

      3) A mid-size, stiff riding turbocharged 4-door sedan that only comes with a manual transmission is a hard sell no matter the brand. A local BMW dealer told me that almost 80-90% of the 3 series they sell are automatics these days.

      4) The car was a quality piece for the price. The doors were light and the interior materials just OK, but it was built well and felt solid. No squeaks, no rattles, no loose trim. Even over rough pavement, it felt tight as a drum.

      5) The MS6 drove a bit heavy (becuase it is), but the controls were light. It has good steering feel, great brakes, predictable handling (light understeer), average grip (feels a bit under-tired) and a decent shifter. The only complaint is about the clutch which was consistently difficult to modulate -- a common complaint about this car. Unless I was completely focused, it was difficult to drive smoothly. My new car has a much more progressive clutch, so I'm back to driving without lurching!

      6) Turbo power can altenate between frustrating and addicting when the engine is this small in a heavy-ish car. The 2.3L has no pull below 2,500RPM, then it springs into life and rips your head off. Freeway passing in 6th gear was no problem -- just dip the right toe for boooooost. Mileage was, ummm, average, but I'm sure I'm at least partially to blame. ;)

      7) The MS6 was the only Japanese car I've ever owned -- I previously had 1 American car and I'm on my 7th German car. Though Mazda didn't make another car I wanted at the time I turned in the MS6, I would definitely consider another Mazda in the future if they made something I was looking for.

      8) Given that the MS3 didn't exist for the first year of the MS6's life and the MS6 sold very poorly in the first year (my dealer had gobs of them on the storage lot and the first year rebates were steep), I don't think think the MS3 hurt it too much. As I understand it, MS6 production was curtailed this year to meet lessened demand and to make room for MS3 production.

      I'm glad I had the MS6 for a while. I'm not sure if I'd buy it again, more because I like variety than because it was a bad car, but I did enjoy it while I had it. Oddly enough, I only saw 3 others on the road in SoCal while I had mine.

      -SimianSpeedster
      • 7 Years Ago
      As a current MS6 owner I'm disappointed the badge won't be carried on. I love my car. But there's some good things about it too. For whatever reason State Farm is charging me the same rate they would for a regular Mazda6. That used to be the case with the Subaru WRX, but due to high volume they found out WRX owners were much greater liabilities. So with no new MS6's I should be able to fly under the radar for a long time to come.
      • 7 Years Ago
      So this basically confirms that the US will not get the 6 that was shown earlier. That makes me nervous. The new 6 is a very attractive car, even as a wagon. I’d hate to have some larger Americanized version. Also this now reduces the chance we’ll get a speed6 because its not a global car and they can’t justify the sales. The current speed6 is a pretty good car just needs some tweaking to compete with the STI and evo. Lighter weight, FMIC, more power and the new Haladex AWD that is on the Saab Turbo X.
      • 7 Years Ago
      This is a bummer. I would argue that the Speed6 perfoms very differently than a V7 Accord or Camry, even if they have similar output and acceleration numbers. Anyway, at least this might allow them to make the next Speed3 with AWD to really compete with the WRX and Lancer Ralliart/Evo.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Oh well. It would be fun if they streched out the RX-8 platform into a sedan and plopped in that 3.7 V6 or turbo-4 from the ms3/6.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Hey, I never said to give it an RX designation. I haven't lost all my marbles. ;-)
        • 7 Years Ago
        Nooooo way. Don't taint the RX-series cars w/your piston engines. :-) (fyi, rx8 has a 1" longer wheelbase than the 6, just shorter overall length)
    • Load More Comments