Next-Gen Mazdaspeed3 Going Au Naturel?

Jeff Perez
Boldride

We’ve yet to drive the new and improved Mazda 3, but from what we’ve heard, it drives about as good as it looks. But I think what most hot hatch enthusiasts are really foaming at the mouth for is a faster, meaner Mazdaspeed3. At least, we know we are.

Rumor has it then- from the good folks over at AutoExpress- that the latest and greatest Speed3 will come to us not with a turbocharged 2.3-liter a la previous generation, but rather, a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter with an output somewhere closer to 200-hp.

Mazdaspeed3
Mazdaspeed3

Now for some, this might seem like a downgrade considering the previous 263-hp engine was a bit peppier than most, but paired to a lighter curb weight and a dropped HP, the next-gen should sit somewhere closer to the VW GTI/Ford Fiesta ST in terms of competition. This should also cut the price some and could leave a bit of room in the growing lineup for a hopped up Mazdaspeed 6 or MX-5, which, whispers suggest, may also come into fruition.

As for now we’re going to take these rumors with a grain of salt, but between now and next year, we should hear some more details as to exactly what will power the next-gen Mazdaspeed 3 before it hits the market in 2015.

PHOTOS: See more of the 2013 Mazdaspeed 3