It may only be a sedan, and it may face competition from the likes of the VW Passat, the new Honda Accord and the redesigned Toyota Camry, but the re-invented and updated Mazda 6 can certainly hold its own in a segment that has business in mind.
With a brand new interior that sees comfort reach new Mazda levels, and a revamped powertrain line-up that includes a turbocharged 2.5-litre inline-four in the CX-9 mid-size crossover SUV, the car that launched at the 2017 LA Motor Show will be turning heads and inviting relaxation when it arrives in the UK later in 2018.
Mazda has concentrated on displaying the new Mazda 6 to its American audience, and the facelifted car will be launched in the UK later in the year, although the full UK specification is yet to be revealed. This means that some of the details here (especially in powertrains) may differ.
The facelifted Mazda 6 looks similar to the current Mazda 3 family car with exterior design changes limited to a new five-point grille with a chrome grille surround that merges with the bottoms of the new LED headlights, and new 17" or 19" wheels. Minor changes with chrome trim pieces and improved brake lights add to the overall look, and Soul Red Crystal paint has been added to the Mazda 6 colour palette too.
Overall, the design is simple and elegant, with clean, precise lines across the entire body, the design tweaks helping to keep what is Mazda's flagship car smart and fresh. It's the third update in 5 years, and a testament to Mazda's attention to detail and desire to keep the car to the forefront of its customers' minds.
It's inside where the changes to the Mazda 6 are seen most, with redesigned front seats and an all-new dashboard with an 8" infotainment screen.
There's also an available 7" digital display in the gauge cluster (in higher grade models), a head-up display that projects information onto the windshield, a 360-degree camera system, ventilated front seats with supportive foam and adaptive cruise control to sit back and enjoy.
Nappa leather is available on top-spec models, and driver assistance systems available that includes automatic emergency braking.
Along with the revised, refreshed and updated interior comes a new top-of-the-line Signature trim that offers the more powerful turbocharged engine, seats trimmed in brown leather and Japanese Sen wood interior details.
With fewer knobs and buttons than before, the updated Mazda 6 is designed with the comfort of the driver in mind, making a drive in the car a more enjoyable experience. And for UK customers, that experience could be even better as we are promised more soft-touch materials and leather when it arrives on these shores.
In order to ensure that that comfort is continued on from the interior, the updated Mazda 6 features revised spring rates, new suspension geometry and extra chassis braces to improve its rigidity, and a rigid-mounted steering column to make sure that the car's response is at its best.
Designed to ensure reduced vibrations, decreased harshness over changing surfaces, and offer a more supple ride, these changes make sure that a drive in the new Mazda 6 is an experience to be enjoyed.
While in the US, the updated car is offered with a choice of two engines - a Skyactiv 2.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine and a new turbocharged petrol engine - here in the UK we won't know what the exact engine specifications will be. However, it is more than likely that the existing Skyactiv 2.0-litre petrol and 2.2 diesel engines will be there, updated, improved and more efficient.
For current Mazda enthusiasts, the Mazda 6 updated model is an exciting prospect. And for drivers of cars such as the VW Passat, a viable alternative.
To keep up to date with the arrival of the Mazda 6 in the UK, keep in touch with us here on the blog, or register your interest by contacting our Customer Service Representatives.