Mazda has confirmed it will reveal a ''re-engineered and refined'' Mazda6 at the Los Angeles motor show on November 29, with the facelifted mid-sizer to be headlined by its new turbocharged engine.
While Mazda is keeping outputs under wraps for now, the boosted unit is expected to punch out 170kW of power at 5000rpm and 420Nm of torque at 2000rpm, just like it does in the CX-9. It it almost certain to be paired with a six-speed automatic transmission.
The punchier powerplant will put the Mazda6 in a better position to compete with the 177kW/345Nm Ford Mondeo Titanium EcoBoost, 180kW/370Nm Skoda Octavia RS245, 180kW/350Nm Hyundai Sonata Premium and 180kW/350Nm Kia Optima GT.
Meanwhile, the 2.5-litre 'SkyActiv-G' naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol used in the current Mazda6 is set to receive a tickle, with cylinder deactivation technology added to improve fuel efficiency. It is unclear if there will be any changes to its outputs of 138kW at 5700rpm and 250Nm at 3250rpm.
Two teaser images of the upgraded Mazda6 have been shared before its international debut, with one showing off the front-three-quarter exterior view while the other depicts the foremost section of the interior.
The Japanese carmaker's 'Kodo' design language is evident once again, this time evolving with ''mature elegance'', according to Mazda.
Exterior and interior quality have been lifted, with the latter now featuring 'Sen Wood', a material normally used in traditional Japanese instruments and furniture.
Influenced by the Vision Coupe concept unveiled at the Tokyo motor show last month, the Mazda6's front-end now features a mesh grille insert and its signature chrome element has been moved underneath the headlights, while its bumper has been restyled.
Inside, the centre stack has been de-cluttered, with a much cleaner look including modernised climate controls and repositioned air vents.
An expanded range of advanced driver assist and safety technologies, dubbed i-ActivSense, will make their way into the new Mazda6, including adaptive cruise control with stop and go function, and 360-degree cameras on the flagship Atenza grade.
The third-generation Mazda6 has been around since 2012, with this revision marking its third in a six-year span. An Australian launch for the latest model is expected in the first half of next year.
Mazda6 sales have taken a hit this year, with the mid-sizer selling 3012 examples to the end of October. This represents a 17.1 per cent decrease over the 3635 registrations it had during the same period in 2016.
Comparatively, the mid-size passenger car under $60,000 segment is currently led by the Toyota Camry (20,498), with the Mazda6 placing second ahead of the Mondeo (2610), Volkswagen Passat (1996), Subaru Liberty (1746), Octavia (1514), Sonata (790), Hyundai i40 (752) and Optima (651).