5 Million Mazda3 Compacts Released into the Wild since 2003

The compact vehicle has become the Japanese brand's second model to reach five million units

The five millionth Mazda3 has been built only twelve years and ten months since production of the first-generation model began in June 2003, setting a new record for the automaker. The first nameplate to reach five million units was the Mazda3's predecessor, the Familia (known as the 323 in Europe), which was in production from 1963 to 2003.

A core model for the company, the Mazda3 makes up around one-third of its annual sales volume. Mazda builds the model at multiple locations: at the Hofu Plant in Japan, Changan Mazda Automobile in China, AutoAlliance in Thailand, and Mazda de Mexico Vehicle Operation in Mexico. The carmaker also assembles the model in Malaysia and Vietnam.

The Mazda3 was fully redesigned in 2013, adopting the brand's SKYACTIV Technology and KODO-Soul of Motion design language, as well as a lightweight yet rigid platform and body. Sold as the Axela in Japan, the current third-generation Mazda3 is available as a five-door hatchback and four-door sedan, with both gasoline and diesel engines.

700,000 units of the total 5 million that have been built so far have found a home in Europe, where the model is available with two gasoline engines (1.5- and 2.0-liter SKYACTIV-G units) and two turbodiesels (1.5- and 2.2-liter SKYACTIV-D units). The powertrains are mated to six-speed automatic or manual transmissions.

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