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The new Mazda Gran Turismo design may be the hottest car to never actually be manufactured. Mazda has revealed one of their hottest concept cars ever, designed exclusively for the Gran Turismo game franchise’s 15th anniversary. An homage to Mazda’s Cinderella-story 1991 LaMans win, the LM55 car is the next in the “Vision” series of concept designs introduced to celebrate GT’s enduring legacy. In Arizona, Chapman Mazda is home to the full line of Mazda vehicles.
The Gran Turismo racing video game series first premiered in 1997 and has since sold more than 70 million games. GT is available worldwide for the PlayStation game system platforms. The GT franchise is unique, a lifelike race driving simulator that has been gleefully embraced by every racing car manufacturer in the world. The game is highly regarded for its amazing graphics and realistic portrayal of the physics of racing. Players can actually adjust the tuning and performance of their cars just as motorsport teams do in real life. On its 6th version, the game’s developer plans to release the 7th version sometime this year.
Perhaps the most unique aspect of the GT game series is the eagerness of racing car designers and manufacturers to design cars specifically for the game, licensing them exclusively for use in Gran Turismo. Aston Martin, Audi, Corvette, BMW and Toyota are just some of the all-star participants. Famous drivers from history have also contributed, including Mario Andretti and the Ayrton Senna Institute. Backed up by an all-star soundtrack, featuring artists like Beck, Nine Inch Nails and Depeche Mode, the game provides an immersive experience like none other.
In celebration of the game’s 15th anniversary, the GT developers put out the call to car makers, asking for their hottest designs for the “Vision Gran Turismo” event. They certainly did not disappoint. Beginning with Alpine and Audi, Lexus, Mercedes, Mitsubishi, VW, Nissan and Aston Martin are just some of the jaw-dropping Vision cars. The most recent addition: Mazda’s LM55 Vision Gran Turismo.
The LM55, so named because the 1991 LeMans winner carried the 55 livery, “pushes the boundaries at the intersection of technology and design.” Using Mazda’s Kodo design ethos, the design blends elements of its production cars (the front grille) with history (the car’s stance reflects the 787 B that won LeMans). We know the design is made of carbon fibre with a white monocoque chassis, utilizing the Skyactiv drive train technology. Mazda calls the LM55 their “vision of the future born of their unrelenting challenger spirit.”
You can find the LM55 in the latest Gran Turismo 6 update. Meanwhile, when you’ve had enough of virtual reality Mazda, take advantage of the amazing values currently offered as part of the Mazda model year close-out at Chapman
Are you ready for the Mazda6 Coupe and diesel models? Now that Mazda has finished rounding out its signature models based on the dynamic, fuel-effective Skyactiv technology, the company has declared its intention to delve more deeply into special edition models and niche products. Available information and insider opinion tell us that this will involve two new incarnations of the newly revamped Mazda6 as well as new variants of the Mazdaspeed product. In Phoenix, Chapman Mazda is the home to all Mazda models and signature products.
Early next year, the world will get its first glimpse of the much-anticipated Mazda6 diesel hybrid, which marks a departure from Mazda’s previous preference for eschewing hybrid technology in favor of standard gasoline-powered engine improvement. Currently the diesel hybrid is set to launch in Japan; however, no U.S. launch date is yet available. The Diesel Mazda6 will allow Mazda to compete directly with VW and other newly introduced, upscale diesel models.
Diesel-powered cars, not previously popular in the Japanese market, have begun to see a spike in sales. They have been extremely popular in Europe for decades as well, but have been generally slow to catch on in the U.S., due to a relatively high initial purchase cost. Producing a clean-burning, highly efficient diesel engine requires a significant investment in engineering, research and development, increasing sales price points.
The two-door 2017 Mazda6 Coupe, a sportier take on the current sedan body style, is expected to debut in 2016 also. Although a two-door model built on the existing sedan platform seems to confound car reviewers, Mazda believes there is a market for a mid-size model with a younger, sportier vibe.
Named one of the “Car and Driver’s” 25 Cars Worth Waiting For from 2015-2018, the 2018 Mazdaspeed3 will be a much-anticipated addition. The Mazdaspeed vehicles, a designation given to the specialty adaptations of Mazda’s stock models, are performance consumer vehicles based on the company’s motorsport racing series cars. Although specs are not yet available, experts anticipate the Mazdaspeed3 will be a screamer, sure to send auto insurance companies screaming for the hills. Expect to see subsequent special edition models too, including a Mazdaspeed2 and Mazdaspeed6.
Finally, Mazda plans to work in the coming years on perfecting its range expander based on rotary technology as well as an electric vehicle and HCCI (homogenous charge compression ignition) technology. One thing’s for sure: it’s going to be an exciting decade for the Mazda brand!
Watch for the 2015 Mazda6 Coupe, coming soon to Chapman Mazda in Scottsdale and the Phoenix area.
Mazda had a busy year at the 2014 Los Angeles International Auto Show. The revamped 2016 Mazda 6 had its world premiere, along with the all new Mazda CX-3 and updated CX-5. The Mazda 6 updates give this class-leading midsize sedan an exciting new energy and modern vibe. Find the 2015 Mazda 6 in Phoenix at Chapman Mazda.
The Mazda 6 made its debut in the 2013 model year, captivating motorists and automobile reviewers around the world. To capture the momentum that came from its immediate popularity, Mazda has given the vehicle an aggressive facelift, both inside and out.
The most notable updates are on the Mazda 6 front end. The new front grille is bolder and brighter, bridging the span between the back sweep feel of the cat-eye headlamps. New bumpers and an updated wheel pattern provide a more sophisticated feel to the car. An expanded palette of paint colors was introduced as well, including Sonic Silver Metallic and Titanium Flash Mica. The optional 19 inch alloy wheels take on a darker color for added visual interest and contrast.
The exterior updates, although striking, take a backseat to the interior upgrades on the 2016 Mazda 6. The entire center console has been revamped, now featuring a 7 inch standalone Mazda Connect infotainment screen with a center-mounted rotary controller with volume control and five button functions. The new electric parking brake switch is situated next to the rotary controller. The instrument panel has also been improved, with a tighter grouping and sporty, high-end feel.
Now available in the Mazda 6 is the “Heads-Up Cockpit” previously available only in the Mazda 3. The Heads-up Cockpit with active driving display offers the driver the opportunity to monitor speed, navigation and safety data (active breaking, blind spot monitoring) on one small screen above the steering wheel. Revamped seats increase both driver and passenger comfort and new interior color options up the “wow” factor exponentially.
The engine and transmission for the 2016 Mazda 6 will remain unchanged, with six-speed manual included in the base model and six-speed automatic available as an option. The engine, a 2.5 litre Skyactiv-G four cylinder, offers up 184 horsepower with 185 pound-feet of torque. The base 2016 model with a manual six-speed transmission is rated at 25 mpg in the city and 37 mpg on the highway. Although Mazda has yet to announce the sticker price for the 2016 Mazda 6, experts predict it will be similar to the 2015 model, with a base price of around $22,000. The 2016 will arrive sometime early next year. Meanwhile, Mazda 6 Phoenix customers will find a great selection of the 2015 models at Chapman Mazda.
Shopping for holiday gifts can be a hassle sometimes but finding the perfect Mazda accessories for the car lover in your life is easy and fun. If you’re struggling to find the perfect present for your favorite auto enthusiast, start your search at Chapman Mazda. You’ll find more choices than you can possibly imagine, including genuine Mazda parts, accessories and service, all designed to give your secret Santa that holiday Zoom-Zoom bliss.
The MX5 Miata has a contingent of diehard fans and there’s plenty to choose from for this group. Car covers, deck bags and trunk pods make great gifts but a custom fit set of travel bags will make the MX5 owner swoon. If your Miata lover drives a vintage model, you can find several online sites offering parts and accessories dating back to 1990s models.
For the practical guy or gal, check out the genuine Mazda line of sun shades, first aid kits and roadside assistance packs. If your little elf is a techie (and whose isn’t?), your choices are practically infinite. Mazda offers iPod integration modules, satellite radios, portable navigation devices and – Santa’s favorite – a racing inspired functional engine start switch retrofit.
If your loved one is a Mazda Motorsports enthusiast, you are truly in luck. Mazda Motorsports has launched MAZDASPEED, a support program where you can buy competition and stock parts directly from Mazda. If someone on your gift list is into racing or building a competition car, consider getting them a MAZDASPEED membership. At the Mazda Motorsports online store, he or she can look up technical specs and order parts. Members even have access to racing support tech specialists and receive discounts on new vehicles.
One of the most interesting and unique gift ideas our elves found this year is a matted and framed set of Mazda concept model blueprints including the RX1, RX6 and MX5 Miata. Of course, rotary engine enthusiasts will adore any one of the many gifts celebrating the rotary. Keychains, tire gauges and even ashtrays are ubiquitous. For the exterior, choose from ground effects kits, splash guards, valve stem covers or wheel locks. Speaking of wheels, how about a new set of performance tires?
If you’re ready to go big this year, Chapman Mazda has some great new inventory specials that will ensure the most memorable Christmas on record. If your Mazda lover already has the perfect vehicle, give the gift of service. Check out the exclusive Mazda Full Circle Inspection offer and service discount coupons, all perfect for keeping your driver safe and sound on the road. And if you’re looking for the perfect Mazda accessories in Scottsdale or Phoenix, we are conveniently located near I-17 on Bell Road. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, for the Mazda enthusiast in your life.
In celebration of the holidays, Mazda has launched its second annual “Drive for Good” winter event, in partnership with NBCUniversal. The 2014 Mazda Drive for Good brings together Mazda and its dealers, partners and employees to help their respective local communities in a variety of ways. In the Phoenix area, you can participate in the 2014 Drive for Good event at Chapman Mazda.
Jim O’Sullivan, President and CEO of Mazda North American Operations, described the genesis of this charitable outreach program: “Mazda Drive for Good started as an idea, a way to bring together the good things Mazda, its employees, its dealers and its business partners were doing in their local community. From there it grew into a way for Mazda to reach new heights in charitable giving, whether monetarily or through volunteer service. Mazda is honored to expand our efforts further by partnering with NBCUniversal and helping a community that needs an extra hand to achieve its goal.”
The Drive for Good program works in two ways. This year, Mazda and NBCUniversal conducted a nationwide search for U.S. non-profit groups in need of assistance and resources. Through an online contest, individuals and groups told their stories and explained why their cause was deserving of assistance. The winner will be announced at the December 3rd Rockefeller Center tree lighting ceremony, broadcast by NBC and hosted by award-winning actress Minnie Driver. NBCUniversal will produce custom promotional spots featuring the winning cause and community, with Ms. Driver’s narration, and feature them throughout the holiday broadcast season. Mazda has committed to providing monetary donations and volunteer services for the winning community as well.
As wonderful as the national competition will be for the winners, it is at the individual and community level that Mazda’s Drive for Good is most beneficial. For every new Mazda test drive taken between November 5, 2014, and January 2, 2015, Mazda will donate one hour of community service to a local cause in that dealership’s community. For every new model sold or leased during the same period, Mazda will donate $150 to a charity of the buyer’s choice.
The 2013 Drive for Good, the program’s inaugural year, was an astounding and unexpected success, donating more than $2.7 million and 56,000 volunteer service hours. The program benefited the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, and the Mazda Foundation nationally, as well as multiple local charities through individual Mazda dealerships. This year, Mazda plans to work again with those four national charities and 42 local organizations around the country, including the Arizona Animal Welfare League here in Phoenix.
Giving back is the Mazda way. and you are invited to help make the 2014 Drive for Good an even bigger success than last year’s campaign. Visit Chapman Mazda to take a test drive before January 2, 2015, and Mazda will donate an hour of volunteer time to a local charity. We suggest giving the 2015 Mazda3 a spin, or any one of the other exhilarating Mazda models. Take it home for the holidays and choose which charity you’d like Mazda to donate $150 to. Join the conversation on social media by using the hashtag #MazdaDriveForGood