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New Mazda 3 2.5 Turbo 2021: Hot hatch and sedan more powerful than first thought! MPS successor outmuscles Volkswagen Golf GTI

The new 2.5 Turbo version of the Mazda3 looks very familiar to its current G25 Astina flagship.

Mazda USA has officially revealed the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo hot hatch and sedan, and in good news for buyers, they have more power and torque than anticipated.

The 2.5-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder engine under the bonnet produces 186kW of power and 434Nm of torque, which is 16kW and 14Nm more than it does in the Mazda6 mid-size car, CX-5 mid-size SUV and CX-9 large SUV thanks to a specific calibration.

As such, the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo comfortably outmuscles the venerable Volkswagen Golf GTI, which ‘only’ manages 180kW/370Nm. In fact, it even beats the benchmark Hyundai i30 N (202kW/378Nm) and Honda Civic Type R (228kW/400Nm) on torque but not power.

However, there’s a catch: these outputs are only developed when the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo is running on ‘premium’ 93 octane petrol. Fill it with ‘regular’ 87 octane fuel instead and it’ll make a very familiar 170kW/420Nm.

Of course, in Australia, our petrol options are typically 91RON, 95RON and 98RON, so it remains to be seen exactly how potent the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo will be locally – if it launches here.

2021 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo hatch 2021 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo hatch

As reported, Mazda Australia has its eye on the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo but has so far stopped short of confirming its availability and therefore its local power and torque.

Either way, the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo is universally mated to a six-speed torque-converter automatic transmission and Mazda’s i-Activ all-wheel-drive system. That’s right; there’s no manual or front-wheel-drive version.

In terms of visual differentiation, the 2.5 Turbo looks very similar to the Mazda3’s current Australian flagship, the G25 Astina, save for the addition of a front lip spoiler, larger exhaust tips, more gloss-black trim and the obligatory 'Turbo' badging.

The spiritual successor to the Mazda3 MPS will launch in the USA and Mexico by the end of this year, so stay tuned as we bring you more details on it as they come to hand. And keep those fingers crossed for right-hand-drive markets, including Australia!