Mazda has unveiled the Takeri concept car at the Tokyo motor show, and it is a pretty good indication on how the next 6 family car, due in January 2013, will look.
Sources at the highest level have revealed to What Car? that, apart from some minor details such as door handles and mirrors, the new 6 will look almost identical to the Takeri. The new 6 will be the second car to use the companys Kodo design language, following the new CX-5 SUV.
It will eventually be available in three bodystyles: hatch, saloon and estate and, like all future Mazdas, will use Skyactiv technology. This new tech is designed to reduce fuel consumption and emissions by using lightweight construction and high-tech diesel and petrol engines. It will include a stop-start system and a new brake-energy-regeneration system called i-Eloop, which is claimed to improve fuel-efficiency by up to 10%.
In future, cars such as the new 6 will also employ more electrification, Mazda research and development boss Hirotaka Kanazawa told us. A plug-in hybrid version is likely within five years and such technology will also be used on the CX-5.
He also revealed that the company is considering using range-extender technology, similar to that fitted to the new Vauxhall Ampera, where a petrol engine recharges a battery when the power runs out. The engine used for this could even be a new version of Mazdas rotary engine, last seen in the RX-8. Rotaries are good for range-extenders because they are compact, light and powerful, he said.
However, despite being on the brink of putting an all-electric Mazda 2 on sale in Japan, the company has no plans to sell it elsewhere or produce bigger all-electric cars.