It's taken seven years and ten months, but Mazda has hit an important milestone in the production of its highly regarded Mazda3 compact car. On April 26, 2011, at its Hofu Plant in Yamaguchi, Japan, the three-millionth 3 rolled down the assembly line.

For those keeping track of such things, this makes the Mazda3 the fastest-selling nameplate in the automaker's current lineup. Over 1.1 million units have been sold in North America to date.

In addition to the Hofu plant, the Mazda3 is also built at the Changan Ford Mazda Automobile (CFMA) plant in Nanjing, China, and AutoAlliance in Thailand. Congrats on the achievement, Mazda, and here's looking forward to the next seven years and ten months of SkyActiv-powered Mazda3s.
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Press Release

Seven years and ten months after production of original Mazda3 commenced in June 2003

HIROSHIMA, Japan (May 25, 2011) - Mazda Motor Corporation has announced that cumulative production of the Mazda3 (known in Japan as the Mazda Axela) reached three million units*1 on April 26, 2011. This milestone was achieved in just seven years and ten months since production of the first-generation model commenced, making the Mazda3 the fastest-selling model in Mazda's current line-up of passenger vehicles, with sales of 1,152,332 in North America alone.

Mazda3 is a true global vehicle; it is produced in three locations - Mazda's Hofu Plant in Yamaguchi, Japan, the Changan Ford Mazda Automobile (CFMA) plant in Nanjing, China, and AutoAlliance Thailand (AAT) - and is sold in approximately 90 countries and regions*2. The three-millionth Mazda3 was produced at the Hofu Plant and is a Japanese-specification five-door hatchback featuring Mazda's MZR-2.0L engine and i-stop, Mazda's unique idling stop system.

"Mazda3 embodies the three elements of Mazda's DNA: distinctive design, exceptional functionality, and responsive handling and driving performance," said Hirotaka Kanazawa, Mazda Motor Corporation's senior managing executive officer in charge of R&D. "Continued global success has seen it grow into Mazda's most popular model, comprising a third of all Mazda vehicle sales. Since the first-generation model appeared on the market, it has responded to the major changes in the automobile industry by inheriting and strengthening Mazda's brand DNA while evolving exceptional environmental and safety performance. As the Mazda3 passes the three-million-unit mark, I would like to thank every customer for their support, and reaffirm our commitment to delivering outstanding environmental and safety performance balanced with driving pleasure that goes beyond your expectations."

Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif. and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States, Canada and Mexico through nearly 900 dealers. Operations in Canada are managed by Mazda Canada, Inc., located in Ontario; and in Mexico by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City.

*1 Data from Mazda's internal records

*2 CY2010 sales result