2023 Mazda 6 update brings 20th Anniversary edition, new tech

Mazda's venerable mid-size sedan and wagon has received an update for 2023, as the nameplate celebrates its 20th year on sale

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  • 2023 Mazda 6 update announced
  • New flagship 20th Anniversary grade commemorates two decades of nameplate
  • Updated technology and new colours; pricing unconfirmed

The updated 2023 Mazda 6 has been announced ahead of its launch in Australia early next year.

With the first-generation 6 debuting locally in mid-2002, Mazda has unveiled a new 20th Anniversary grade based on the flagship Atenza, with unique badging, an updated interior colour palette, and the brand's new 'artisan red' finish.

It will also be available in rhodium white, along with a glossier silver grille and 19-inch alloy wheels.

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Inside, there's tan suede-look and Nappa leather upholstery, and 20th Anniversary badging on the front headrests.

The existing range has also received minor updates for model-year 2023, with black Nappa leather replacing the previous 'walnut brown' look for the Atenza. Its white Nappa leather option has been deleted.

In addition, traffic jam assist is now available on the GT SP and Atenza, while wireless Apple CarPlay and wireless phone charger feature on the Touring and above.

As before, the Mazda 6 includes an ageing 8-inch infotainment unit, rather than the larger 8.8-, 10.25 or 12.3-inch screens available in the 3, CX-30, CX-5, CX-60, CX-8 and CX-9 with its latest infotainment system.

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The blacked-out GT SP extends its theme for 2023, with a gloss black grille frame and tailgate wing, while the wagon gains black roof rails. This adds to the darkened side mirrors, black alloy wheels and burgundy leather in today's model.

Under the bonnet, the flagship 2.5-litre turbo remains – despite rumours of its demise for the Japanese market – but with a slight power bump. It now produces 173kW (at 4250rpm), up 3kW, while peak torque remains unchanged at 420Nm (at 2000rpm) – but a further 8Nm is available at 4250rpm.

Turbo models also receive a retuned six-speed automatic transmission, which is said to provide a more direct upshift response and increased reactive force of the accelerator pedal.

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The entry-level 140kW/252Nm naturally-aspirated 2.5-litre petrol engine remains available on the Sport and Touring.

However, across the range, Mazda has updated the characteristics of the electric power-assisted steering to "enhance response and provide more tactile feedback at medium and high speeds".

Year-to-date, VFACTS new-car sales figures reveal 1298 examples of the Mazda 6 have been sold in Australia in 2022, placing it behind the hugely popular Toyota Camry (9205), but ahead of the Skoda Octavia (883) and Volkswagen Passat (683).

The 2023 Mazda 6 sedan and wagon will arrive in Australian showrooms in the first half of 2023, with pricing set to be announced closer to launch.


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