Mazda has given fans a nice surprise this morning – not only has it announced that the 2014 Mazda6 will debut at the 2012 Moscow Motor Show next month (earlier than the anticipated reveal at the Paris show in the fall), but it also released images of the all-new midsize sedan.
After a string of shadowy teaser videos, Mazda has released a few official images of the new 6. The design doesn't stray far from the Takeri concept car from 2011, and that's a good thing. The 2014 Mazda6 is dressed in the same hue of rich red paint and carries over the aggressive front fascia, bulging fenders, and fast greenhouse of the concept. The highlight of the front end is the brand's new trademark of its Kodo design philosophy – a dynamic piece of bright trim running from headlight to headlight, outlining the bottom of the five-sided grille. The move to production has sacrificed the Takeri’s slim taillights; however, the units on this particular 2014 6 are dark-tinted and have the same sporty feel as those on the 2013 CX-5 crossover. Not shots of the interior yet, but don't be surprised if the 6's cabin takes draws from the same parts bin as the CX-5.
We already knew that the 2014 Mazda6 would use a Skyactiv four-cylinder engine. Mazda has now confirmed that, at least for this Russian-spec show car, it will be the same 2.0-liter unit found in the CX-5 and Mazda3, and will be paired to a six-speed automatic transmission. In both of the other cars, the I-4 produces 155 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque and is rated at up to 35 mpg in the CX-5 and up to 40 mpg in the 3. Assuming Mazda hasn't increased the power output for the U.S.-spec 6, this puts its sedan as the least powerful four-cylinder midsize sedan in the segment; the next-least-powerful sedan is the 170-hp 2013 Ford Fusion 2.5. However, that sacrifice in horsepower may be worth it if the 2014 6 can achieve a segment-leading highway rating of 35 to 40 mpg. We wouldn't be surprised if the automaker can hit those numbers since Mazda is also taking a hard look at reducing vehicle weight, and the 2014 Mazda6 will also be the first model with the company's i-ELOOP brake regeneration system.
Stay tuned, since we expect Mazda will release more information as the 2014 Mazda6's late-August debut draws closer.