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With all of the hype and anticipation surrounding the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata, the Japanese brand was able to sneak another driver-oriented model into its lineup. The company's spec page for the 2015 Mazda3 hatchback and sedan have been updated to list the Skyactiv-G 2.5-liter four-cylinder as finally being available with a six-speed manual transmission, in addition to the previous six-speed automatic. The automaker had promised the row-your-own gearbox with the bigger engine back when it first an

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In terms of exterior appearance, not much has changed from the last time we spotted the next-generation Mazda3 out testing. Oh, sure – we can see plenty of details that clearly show the new Kodo design influence (that front end reminds us a whole lot of the sleek new Mazda6), but these latest round of spy shots don't really show us anything we haven't seen before. Oh, wait, yes they do – the interior.

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Following exciting new models like the 2013 CX-5 and 2014 Mazda6, Mazda is getting ready to introduce the next generation of its high-volume compact, the Mazda3. After talking to several of Mazda's dealers, Automotive News is reporting that the automaker is planning to introduce its new compact this fall, which is earlier than what was originally reported.

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Mazda's new Kodo design language is set to quickly spread across the automaker's entire lineup, judging by these spy shots of the next-generation Mazda3 that show some very familiar styling cues. No matter, we're impressed with what Mazda has done on the CX-5 crossover and Mazda6 sedan in terms of design, and we're happy to see the C-segment hatchback ditching the smile-for-a-mile Nagare design.

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