AFTER its latest makeover, Mazda’s cute looking baby hatch is fighting its corner in a tough sector with renewed vigour to ensure that supermini buyers don’t ignore its appeal.
As before, there are three and five-door options, giving flexibility to parents who perhaps have young children and are looking for a small runabout. The exterior styling looks classy and dynamic with that smarter nose, revised front fog lamp bezels and more striking wheels. And Mazda have addressed criticisms of the previous generation car by paying particular attention to the look, feel and touch of the interior, reworked to reflect the outside upgrade.
The Mazda2’s 1.3-litre petrol engine can be had with 84PS but for those who want their £10k supermini to cost more or less that, there’s the 75PS edition we’re testing here. So does it zoom zoom? Well yes, up to a point. The high-mounted gear lever shifts neatly and the whole car feels handy and light on its feet. It never feels unstable and the steering’s quick acting. Performance-wise, this 1.3 TS will cover the 0-62mph dash in 14.9 seconds with a top speed of 104mph.
As well as the stiffer bodyshell, the drive and handling are enhanced by modifications to the front suspension geometry, as well as rear trailing arms that have softer mountings.
The changes may be modest individually, but with the whole greater than the parts, the result is a car that should feel more planted to the road without losing any of its verve for life.
The four-speed automatic transmission is a first on the Mazda2
FACTS AT A GLANCE
CAR: Mazda2 1.3 75 TS (pictured right)
PRICES: £10,305-£10,665 - on the road
INSURANCE GROUPS: 9
CO2 EMISSIONS: 119 g/km
PERFORMANCE: 0-62mph 14.9s / top speed 104mph
FUEL CONSUMPTION: (combined) 55.4mpg
STANDARD SAFETY FEATURES: ABS, electronic brake force distribution, emergency brake assist, twin front airbags
WILL IT FIT IN YOUR GARAGE?: length/width/heightmm 3885/1695/1475.