2012 Mazda Mazda3Enlarge Photo
For years the question has been asked, “How long does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop.” Ultimately the answer was three and similarly Mazda has hit a milestone that also uses the numeral three in it. This month marked the production of the 3 millionth Mazda3 or Axela as it is know in Japan. How long did it take them to produce this many of the company’s popular compact car? According to Mazda, the company reached 3 million units seven years and then months after the launch of the first-generation model. Hard to fathom 3 million Mazda3s, but it is quite the milestone and we congratulate Mazda.
The Mazda3 is the fastest-selling model in the company’s current vehicle line up and it is on its second-generation design. The redesign was announced in 2008 and has been the source of a lot of commentary over the past couple years due specifically to the front end redesign. There is no doubt that the entire car became more sculpted in the body panels, but the front-end also ended up with a “smile” that some have likened to that of a Joker, while others feel it makes the car quite pleasant to look at. Either way, the critics haven’t shown to out weight the average Joe, which can be seen by the model continuing to claim its popularity amongst its other Mazda family of cars. There is even a hot Mazdaspeed3 variant that will set any speed enthusiast back in their seat and maybe even plaster as smile to match the front end on their face.
For those curious, the 3 millionth Mazda3 was produced at the Hofu Plant as a five-door hatchback for the Japanese market. The car was fitted with the Mazda MZR-2.0L engine and the i-stop system (the i-stop start and stop system is something that has yet to make it to the U.S. market cars).
"As we celebrate reaching three million units, I would like to thank the millions of Mazda3 customers for their support and reaffirm Mazda's commitment to delivering outstanding environmental and safety performance balanced with driving pleasure that goes beyond your expectations," said Hirotaka Kanazawa, Mazda’s senior managing executive officer in charge of R&D.