Mazda6; The Evolved KODO – Soul of Motion

We recently acquired the immaculate Mazda6, complete with 2018 updates, for a test drive from Mazda Malaysia (Bermaz Motor). As this year is the year of the all-new Mazda3, we couldn’t ignore the premier model of the D-segment. If you think the KODO – Soul of Motion theme is spent, think again… The current Mazda6’s KODO design language is as relevant as the present times, and possibly even more relevant in today’s D-segment or flagship sedan standards.

Our partners at again spent a productive weekend with the calm and collective Mazda6 at an exotic locale.  They’ve come up with five elusive points why the Mazda6 stands out against stronger contenders like the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry; the usual favorites in this country. The Mazda6 is a fully-imported unit from the Land of the Rising Sun and the first thing you’d notice is the KODO – Soul of Motion silhouette. It begins with the imposing new front grille with blacked out 3D inserts, which replaces the previous slated grille of previous generations.  The guys can’t help but relate the Mazda6 design details to Mazda’s Vision Coupe, RX-Vision and Vision Coupe Concepts.  

The previous Mazda6 came with 18-inchers, while the current one, a 2.5l, is decked out in 19-inch wheels in gun metal hue, giving it a lowered look and an aggressive stance. And what’s more, the current generation has a sunroof and adaptive headlights. The guys at RouteHunters put it best: We have always maintained that beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, and what might appeal to some might not to others. In the case of the Mazda 6 though, we would like to state what we think about the design clean and clear.

The Mazda 6 is no pint size car but it isn’t the longest or widest in the large sedan segment. Its 20mm shorter than the Nissan Teana and Toyota Camry, but it has the biggest wheelbase at 2830mm. That’s 5 mm more than the 2019 Toyota Camry and a whopping 55mm longer than the Honda Accord and Teana. The extended wheelbase translates to plenty of legroom for occupants. At 1840mm, it’s the same width at the Camry, and 10mm wider than the Teana. Despite being generously proportioned, the Mazda is significantly lighter compared to its rivals. While the Accord, Camry and Teana weighs well into the 1500kg mark, the Mazda 6 2.5 is only 1440kg.

In efforts to make the car more premium, being a flagship and all, the Mazda6 still has that human-centric dash with thoughtfully located controls and read-outs. The interior environment is one of uncluttered elegance with ambient overhead console lighting, plush interior trims, a meter cluster with LCD and every trip is enhanced with the MZD Connect infotainment system. Let’s not forget about the 8-inch touch screen and central control knob.

Boot space is bigger than the Accord at 489 liters, which is good enough to store a picnic’s worth of Coleman tables and chairs. You can also fold down the rear seats if you require to store bigger, oversized items.

On the road the best trait the Mazda 6 has is its beautiful ride quality. Despite riding on massive 19 inch rims, the Mazda6 has a beautiful ride quality and excellent handling; this is due to the effective MaxPherson fronts and high-grade multilinks at the rear. While we can’t say that its an agile B-road machine, due to its sheer size and comfort tuned handling, it does take corners comfortably and safely.

Where the Mazda 6 truly shines is on the highways, where sweeping corners are tackled with ease at high speed. The G-Vectoring system aids in keeping the car in line at tight corners but we can conclude that the Mazda 6 is ultimately at home on high speed turns.

The final party trick of the Mazda 6 is its lane keep assist system. This system activates once above 40 km/h. You will know the system is activated when there are two parallel lines on your head up display on either side of the speed readout. At which point, if the car sways out of the lane, the car will turn the steering automatically to bring you back into the existing lane. However be sure to keep both hands on the wheel. If your hands are off the wheel for more than a few minutes continuously the system disengages.

At RM203,000, the Mazda6 is no bargain but it’s a definite recommendation for the select few who knows about a fine large sedan and then some.

Text/Images: Kuhen KV

Edited: Ernest

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