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Mazda's Mazda6 Mechanical Changes For 2017 – Cause for concern?

Mazda is making some cool, and possibly not so cool, changes to the 2017 Mazda6 and leaving two key things alone.

Mazda’s 2017 Mazda6 sedan will receive important upgrades and changes to its mechanical bits and front fascia for 2017. However, before we torture you any longer, let us make clear that the Mazda6 will still be available (in limited trims and limited production) with a six-speed manual transmission. The perfectly-matched 185 hp, normally-aspirated, four-cylinder engine will also remain the car’s only engine. With that out of the way, let’s get to the list of chromed Sfitzer valve options.

The first change we caution Mazda fans about is Mazda’s new Traffic Sign Recognition. This sounds very helpful, until you read what it really does. Mazda says this new safety nanny will perform as follows: “The Forward Sensing Camera can detect speed signs during driving and display the identified speed limit in the Active Driving Display. It warns the driver by blinking graphics on the display three times when the speed exceeds the limit. Audible alert by sounding a buzzer is also available. This encourages safer driving and helps the driver always feel confident by preventing speed signs from being overlooked.”

So to recap, when you pass a street sign that says “30 MPH” going 31 MPH your Mazda will flash bright lights at you three times. If you’re the kind of person that has on occasion found themselves saying “Thank you, sir, may I have another!” you will love the optional buzzer that can accompany the flashing lights. Go 56 MPH on the highway and pass a sign that says "55 MPH", and you better be ready for the flashers.

When we learned of this new system, we reached out to our Mazda contact. She’s the best in the business as what she does. We asked her if the system can be turned off, and if so, will the car then put on a constant dash warning light. No word back yet. We’re worried.

Mazda’s new 2017 Mazda6 will also have the new G-Vectoring Control (GVC) we highlighted in our prior story. Here is what mazda says the system will do: “GVC controls engine drive torque to generate deceleration G the instant the driver begins turning the steering wheel, thereby shifting load to the front wheels. This increases front wheel tire grip, enhancing the vehicle’s responsiveness. Thereafter, when the driver maintains a constant steering angle, GVC immediately recovers engine drive torque, transferring load to the rear wheels to enhance vehicle stability. This series of load transfers draws out much more grip from the front and rear tires, enhancing vehicle responsiveness and stability better aligned with the driver’s intentions.”

This GVC system could be great, or it could be one of those systems that you barely, if ever, feel, like torque vectoring. We look forward to testing it. Unlike the speed warning nanny.


Nino (not verified)    August 13, 2016 - 7:42PM

The red light and speeding warning in the 2016 GT can be turned off, so I'm certain this will allow the same. It's Mazda, not Toyota