Australians are going to have to wait to get their hands on the hottest Mazda 3.

    A company spokesperson today confirmed the all-wheel drive 2.5 Turbo revealed earlier this month is “left-hand drive only at this stage”.

    “With the interest in performance cars [in Australia] it’s something that we’re interested in, and we’ll continue to talk about. Until it’s made in right-hand drive form we can’t commit to it,” they said.

    Skyactiv-X has just come on board, and that’s the premium Mazda 3 drivetrain. We feel the proof is in the driving with that car, it offers the performance of a larger-capacity engine with the efficiency of a smaller-capacity engine.”

    The hotter Mazda 3 is powered by the same 2.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine used in the CX-5 and CX-9, making up to 186kW of power and 433Nm of torque depending on the quality of fuel used.

    Although 170kW is down on the 180kW offered by the upcoming Mk8 Volkswagen Golf GTI in Australia, its peak torque figure puts even the Volkswagen Golf R and Honda Civic Type R in the shade.

    Unlike previous warmed-over Mazda 3 specials, the 3 2.5T has all-wheel drive and a six-speed automatic transmission as standard.

    In the USA, Mazda will offer the 2.5 Turbo with essentially everything in its kit bag.

    The cabin is specced similarly to the range-topping Astina on sale in Australia, with full leather trim, a complete suite of active safety features, and 18-inch alloy wheels.

    Note: Mazda 3 Astina pictured. The spec of the car pictured mirrors that of the Mazda 3 2.5 Turbo offered in the USA.

    Scott Collie

    Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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