Mazda’s R.A.C.E. STEM Program Reaches 10,000 Students

Back to school is well into its first month and Mazda’s very own R.A.C.E. STEM program is back to the grind, ready to reach students with the interest and excitement often lost in today’s classrooms. R.A.C.E (Racing Accelerates Creative Education) is an outreach program that has impacted over 10,000 students during its 22 interactive presentations.  All programs thus far have been at schools located near the TUDOR United Sports Car Championship events, allowing organizers to incorporate racing themes into the presentations.

Mazda’s R.A.C.E. STEM program

Mazda is helping students not see school as a bunch of boring teachers.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) programs are project-based, collaborative learning programs that focus on hands-on, student-centered education. STEM programs seek to combine all four principles it addresses into one cohesive subject, taught through real-world applications, to help students relate skills to future career possibilities.

Mazda’s R.A.C.E. STEM program makes an effort to bring students to the race track and show them STEM in action. By showcasing just how much STEM goes into the world of racing, students are able to see how much of an impact STEM education will make on their futures.

It is through advocates of R.A.C.E. and the leadership team at the Circuit of the Americas that Mazda’s R.A.C.E. program is able to continue with its presentations and make preparations for the coming year. Here at Bakersfield Mazda we are proud to be a part of a family that supports education and can’t wait to see it grows in the coming years.

2016 Mazda MX-5 May Not Get Retractable Hardtop

Since the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata officially debuted early this month, the rumors have been flying. One idea floating around the automotive world is that the new MX-5 may not get a retractable hardtop—at least not at first.

That video demonstrates how the retractable hardtop worked in older generation Miatas.

Mazda is proud of the MX-5’s weight reduction and boasts that it has shed 220 pounds when compared to the outgoing model. This may be one of the main reasons why there is no power-retractable hardtop (PHRT) for the first model year.

Autoblog reports that since 2007, the take rate for PHRT models has been 52 percent. With more than half of MX-5 buyers wanting the hardtop, Mazda surely has to bring it to market soon. Or maybe, Mazda has something else in store? Perhaps we will see a coupe version with a permanent roof in the near future.

Which version of the MX-5 do you prefer, soft top or hardtop? Would you like to see a coupe version as well?

The Next Generation Mazda MX-5 Is Finally Here

After being teased for months about the next generation Mazda MX-5, we finally get to see it. On September 3, Mazda simultaneously unveiled the new roadster in California, Tokyo, and Barcelona, Spain.

“The MX-5 Miata stands as the flag-bearer for everything that a Mazda vehicle is,” Jim O’Sullivan, president and chief executive of Mazda North America, said ahead of the debut in California. “Tonight’s reveal is a big deal for us.”

Mazda unveiled the new design, but did not give any details on the powertrain or other specifications; however, industry experts say the combination should stay the same—four cylinder engine, rear-wheel drive, and a six-speed manual transmission (available automatic).

The new design is more angular and aggressive than the outgoing third-generation with narrow headlights and a sloping front grille. Mazda says the new model shaves 220 pounds from the curb weight of the outgoing model. It also loses 3 inches in length and a half inch in width, making it closer to the dimensions of the original Miata.

We should learn more details about the new Mazda MX-5 when it appears at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show in November. It is set to go on sale sometime next year as a 2016 model.

Mazda Celebrates Drive for Good at Pebble Beach

While the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance held each year in California showcases the best and most luxurious offerings in the automotive industry, there is a charitable side, too. Mazda recently celebrated its charitable campaign, Drive for Good at Pebble Beach with a dinner.

The campaign ran from November 2013 to January 2014 and Mazda donated $2,751,700 to various charitable organizations during that time. One of those organizations was the SPCA of Monterey Country. Mazda presented a $25,000 check to the animal welfare organization at the Pebble Beach dinner.

Drive for Good at Pebble Beach

“The SPCA’s relationship with Mazda Racing and the Mazda Foundation has benefited the thousands of companion animals, horses, and wildlife rescued and cared for by the SPCA. Mazda always goes above and beyond in supporting our work for the animals,” said Gary Tiscornia, SPCA Executive Director, in a statement. “Mazda staff take animal protection personally. They bring drivers to the SPCA Adoption Pavilion to meet the pets named after them and always provide us opportunities to share in exciting Mazda programs at the historic Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. We are very grateful for their support.”

In addition to the monetary donations ($100 per Mazda sale during the campaign went to charity), Mazda employees volunteered an hour of service for every Mazda test drive, which totaled 56,435 hours of service.

Here at Bakersfield Mazda, we are proud to be a part of the Mazda family and look forward to serving you during your next visit.

Big Changes for Mazda Coming Soon

We are all very excited about the next generation Mazda MX-5 coming soon, but did you know big changes for Mazda are coming to many of its models? Automotive News has outlined all the Mazda changes over the next five years.

Starting this year, Mazda rolled out a redesigned Mazda2. Next year, we’ll see a lot of changes just within the first half of the year with a reengineered Mazda6, the all-new MX-5 soft-top, a freshened CX-5, and the debut of a new model, the CX-3. Mazda will also be phasing out the Mazda5 small van in 2015.

big changes for Mazda

Mazda will replace the 2014 Mazda5 with the Mazda CX-3.

The CX-3 will be a brand new model to fill the gap in the subcompact crossover segment. It is set to go on sale here in the U.S. in the summer of 2016.

As 2016 rolls in, we’ll see some more changes for Mazda, including the return of the performance-oriented Mazdaspeed3, a reengineered Mazda3, the debut of a MX-5 hardtop, a reengineered CX-5, and a redesigned CX-9.

What Mazda update or new model are you most excited about?

Mazda Partners with Fashion Rocks

When you spend your professional life up on stage singing in front of thousands of people, what you wear will constantly be criticized, which is why fashion and music have a long, intertwined history. A new CBS television special called Fashion Rocks will explore this connection, airing at 9 p.m. EST on Tuesday, September 9.

Mazda partners with Fashion Rocks as the sole automotive sponsor.

Mazda partners with Fashion Rocks

“Like music and fashion, Mazda was born from passion, a deep passion for and commitment to innovation that guides everything that we do today and into the future,” said Russell Wager, MNAO vice president of marketing, in a statement. “Our partnership with Fashion Rocks gives us the opportunity to share our brand with consumers and let them experience our vehicles in an unexpected, yet authentic, way.”

Even before the special airs, you can explore some great content online on the Fashion Rocks website, including music videos and information about Mazda vehicles.

Be sure to watch this TV special and check out your favorite rock bands/fashion icons. And, keep your eyes open for the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata, which will be unveiled on September 3.

2015 Mazda MX-5 Design Will ‘Look Nothing Like’ What you Expect

We’re less than a month away from the official reveal of the next-generation Mazda MX-5 on September 3. Now we’ve learned a little more about what we can or can’t expect for the 2015 Mazda MX-5 design.

According to an interview with Australia’s The Motor Report, Martin Bender, head of Mazda’s operations in Australia, said the new MX-5 “will look nothing like” the classic MX-5 design that has persisted for 25 years. He goes on to say the new MX-5 design will be an evolution of Mazda’s current “Kodo” design language that takes shape on the Mazda6, Mazda3, Mazda2, and CX-5.

A recent set of spy shots pulled from a poorly shot video show a lightly-camouflaged MX-5 cruising down the street in Japan. It definitely is taking on the Kodo design while mixing in some classic MX-5 design elements. The trunk appears to sit higher than the hood and it is wearing compact tail lights with a tapered design.

Here at Bakersfield Mazda, we can’t wait for the big reveal on September 3 to see the final details of the 2015 Mazda MX-5 design take shape.

2015 Mazda MX-5 design

Even though it is going to be hard to beat this classic design.

Mazda Earns Recognition for Most Improved Non-Premium Brand in APEAL Study

In the recent 2014 J.D. Power Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout (APEAL) Study, Mazda was the most improved non-premium brand. The Mazda brand improved seven positions over last year’s study and came in 9th place this year with 790 points.

“One of the main principles in our DNA is ‘Kaizen,’ which is a Japanese term that means ‘continuous improvement through wisdom and ingenuity,’” said Jim O’Sullivan, president and CEO, Mazda, in a statement. “Mazda’s improvement in this year’s 2014 J.D. Power APEAL study shows that our continued focus on improving vehicles through ongoing evaluations and customer feedback is changing their opinion of the brand, and for the better. Customers are more satisfied with their new Mazda than ever before.”

2014 Mazda6

In addition to being the most improved non-premium brand, the 2014 Mazda6 had the highest score, 821 points, in the Midsize Car segment, scoring 21 points higher than the segment average. Other Mazda cars also performed well in the study, including the 2014 Mazda3, which scored 17 points above the Compact Car average and the 2014 Mazda CX-5, which was ranked fourth out of 13 in the Compact SUV category.

Come check out any of these high-scoring Mazda vehicles available today at Bakersfield Mazda.

Finding the Best Back to School Car

For those of us with school-aged children, you’re probably already thinking about or longing for back-to-school time. If you have a new driver or perhaps a recent high school graduate you might have a car on your school supplies list this year.

Here are a few tips for finding the best back to school car.

  • Discuss priorities. Talk with your student to find out why he or she wants in a car. Your ideas of wants vs. needs are probably different, but find a way to compromise. Remember, that if you get a car they actually want to drive, they will probably take better care of it.
  • New vs. used. One of the most important steps in finding a back to school car is whether you want a new or used vehicle. Keep in mind that used cars generally offer a better value; however, new cars will give you the best safety and technology features.
  • Budget. What is your budget for this car? Is your child contributing to the purchase price and upkeep? Who is paying for gas, insurance, and repairs? Don’t forget all of these related car expenses before you settle on a specific model.

Once you and your scholar have hammered out these details, it’s time to start test driving. Both the Mazda2 and Mazda3 are great back to school options that are economical, safe, and fun to drive. Come visit us today at Bakersfield Mazda and we’ll help you find the best back to school car.

best back to school car

2012 Mazda3

2015 Mazda2 Gets Redesigned

For the first time in seven years, the Mazda2 is getting redesigned. The Mazda2 is Mazda’s smallest offering with sporty hatchback looks.

Introduced in Japan under the Demio name, the 2015 Mazda2 will come to the U.S. later this year. It will use Mazda’s fuel-saving, lightweight SkyActiv technologies, including engines, transmissions, body, and chassis.

2015 Mazda2

Do you like the 2014 Mazda2 more? Comment below and let us know.

The Mazda2’s new looks follow Mazda’s Kodo design language in the same lines as the Mazda3 and Mazda6 and is heavily influenced by the Hazumi concept that was on display in Geneva in March. Mazda hasn’t said which engines the U.S. market will see, but most likely it will be the 1.5-liter gasoline engine that is rated at 99 horsepower. Other markets, such as Japan and Europe will get the SKYACTIV-D 1.3-liter and 1.5-liter diesel engines.

It’s so refreshing to see such a stylishly designed small car. Just because you want to drive something small, that doesn’t mean you want something bland and boring with no high-tech features.

Mazda will release more information on the redesigned Mazda2 as the year progresses. The 2015 Mazda2 will roll into Bakersfield Mazda sometime during the fourth quarter of this year.