2011 Mazda2 at 2009 L.A. Auto Show


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  • Competes with: Toyota Yaris, Honda Fit, Hyundai Accent
  • Looks like: A European-styled Japanese car that might work in America
  • Drivetrain: 1.5-liter four-cylinder with five-speed manual or four-speed automatic
  • Hits dealerships: Summer 2010

We’ve been introduced to the Mazda2 many times before as versions have been scooting around the globe since 2007. The U.S. finally sees what it gets from a small Mazda at the L.A. Auto Show. Stylistically, the Americanized Mazda2 gets a subtle smiling lower bumper, an element shared on all new Mazdas.

The interior looks relatively upscale for the class, much like the Mazda3.

However, the company didn’t reveal performance figures in terms of horsepower or mileage. All we know about what will power the Mazda2 is that it’s a 1.5-liter four-cylinder teamed to either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. We’d guess it will not return the exceptional mileage of the Ford Fiesta, which can reach 38 mpg or 40 mpg highway, depending on the trim.

Mazda, however, trumpeted the “zoom-zoom” aspect of how fun the Mazda2 will be to drive. It better be if it doesn’t deliver on mileage, especially at this size.

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Former managing editor David Thomas has a thing for wagons and owns a 2010 Subaru Outback and a 2005 Volkswagen Passat wagon. Email David Thomas

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