Lower costs for upgraded Mazda3

  • New low cost diesel joins the Mazda3 range
  • Lower emissions for 2.2 Sport diesel models
  • Both versions cost less in company car tax

Mazda's latest diesel 3 models now cost less for company car drivers.

The Japanese firm has added the 1.6-litre Sport Diesel while making upgrades to the two 2.2-litre Sport diesel options to help lower the costs for company car owners.

This new 1.6-litre diesel model produces 113bhp and 270Nm of torque. With emissions of 115g/km it falls in to the 13% Benefit in Kind (BIK) tax bracket for 2011/21. This means it will cost just £41 per month in Sport spec while the monthly cost of the Sport Nav version will be £43, based on the 20% tax scale.

Both models can also achieve 65.7mpg, according to Mazda, and come with plenty of kit including Bose audio system, heated sports seats, 17-inch alloys and side skirts.

Improvements to the higher-powered models start with the 148bhp 2.2 Sport Diesel. This now emits 139g/km, compared to the previous 144g/km, and drops it down from the 21% BIK tax bracket in to the 20% BIK band for 2011/12. Previously this would have cost £70 per month for anyone paying tax at 20%. Now with the improvements this drops to £66.

The top-of-the-range 2.2 Sport Diesel with 182bhp has seen similar upgrades. Emissions have dropped from 149g/km to 144g/km. This means it drops from the 22% BIK band to the 21% bracket. Again, anyone paying on the 20% tax scale would previously have paid £76 per month but this will now drop to £69.

Both models have also seen small improvements on the economy front. The 148bhp model will now average 54.3mpg, up from 52.3, while the 182bhp version rises from 51.4mpg to a claimed 52.3mpg.

There have also been changes to the design of the Mazda3. There’s a new front end, a revised rear bumper and new alloy design. Inside the car is a selection of new materials and colours, while the company also claims it is even quieter in the latest version.

The updated Mazda3 is set to go on sale in early 2012.