|From Hiroshima and Port of Yokohama through the vast Russian plains to Frankfurt am Main, the all-new Mazda3 contingent traversed 15,000 km to reach its destination at Mazda’s European R&D Center in Oberursel, just a stone’s throw from the ultimate disembarkation point – the IAA Frankfurt Motor Show.|
The new Mazda3 Tour which began proper from Vladivostok on 3 August en route to Frankfurt was the third time a Mazda variant had embarked on an extreme test drive, following two previous expeditions in 1977 and 1990. Eight new Mazda3 hatchbacks were designated to cross two continents, nine time zones and 30 cities on unpredictable roads through breathtaking landscapes and vibrant cultural diversity.
The overland portion of the trip was split into seven stages, traversing Russia, Belarus and Poland. Along the way, the Mazda3 teams took in a variety of sights, including Lake Baikal, the Altai Mountains and the Kungur Ice Caves. They stood on the border between Asia and Europe, and were escorted on more than one occasion by dozens of Mazdas driven by local enthusiasts. During the final leg, they visited four European capitals – Moscow, Minsk, Warsaw and Berlin.
Hidden potholes couldn’t stop them, football-sized rocks couldn’t stop them nor did flat tyres, or overturned trucks and various other obstacles; the new Mazda3 designated drivers simply bit the edge of the bullet and marched on…
Mazda’s much-hyped new compact which replaces the current second-generation variant is the epitome of the “KODO – Soul of Motion” design interpretation. The third of the KODO-themed variant after the highly acclaimed Mazda CX-5 and Mazda6, the new Mazda3 will certainly turn more than a few brows at the IAA. There will be four new Mazda3s on exhibit at Mazda’s B12 Hall 9 stand and another three on the outside exhibition grounds.
See the only best images from the new Mazda3 Route Tour Challenge 2013 right here at Motorsportchannel.com – your most dependable source for everything Mazda!