Best Gifts for High School Graduates

As the end of the school year fast approaches, you may be thinking about the soon-to-be high school graduate in your life. Whether this is your own child, a grandchild, niece, nephew, or just a close friend, getting them a graduation gift can be a great way to show them you care and give them a great start in their college career. Here are ten of the best gifts for high school graduates.

  • Car. A car is a great way to send your budding academic into the adult world. And, it will make them an immediate hit with the rest of the freshman class. Come visit us at Bakersfield Mazda and we’ll give you a great deal on a quality used or new car.

Best Value Award

  • Bicycle. If you can’t afford a car, a bicycle is a fantastic alternative to a car. Not only will it get them from point A to point B, but it is a great form of exercise.
  • Gift card. Do a little research and find out what stores are close to where they’ll be headed this fall and get them a gift card. If they’ll be taking a car, a gas card is a great option that is guaranteed to be used.
  • Noise cancelling headphones. These are great for studying in dorms. They cut out all the extra noise and will help your student focus on their work.
  • Laptop. The portability of a laptop is essential for many college students.
  • Luggage. Having a quality suitcase is a great option for students, especially those who “go away” to college and will be travelling frequently.
  • Games. While board games may seem old-school, they are a simple way to create a fun night and possibly make a few new friends.
  • Digital camera. Of course, many people use their smartphones to take pictures, having a quality digital camera may encourage your student to take a few more quality pictures to send home.
  • Alarm clock. Waking up for those 8 AM classes can be quite a challenge, so getting them a reliable alarm clock (instead of just using their phone) may help. Take a look at this rolling alarm clock that only lets you hit the snooze once before it rolls out of reach.
  • Cash. If all else fails, give your graduate some cash. They can always use to buy a book or two for their upcoming classes.

How will you be celebrating the high school graduate in your life?

Mazda Calls North American Facility ‘Most Important’ Base

Despite being a Japanese company, Mazda Chairman Takashi Yamanouchi called its new North American facility in Mexico, Mazda’s “most important global strategic base.”

The newly-opened assembly factory in Salamanca, Mexico will have an annual production of 230,000 vehicles when it reaches full capacity. This facility is so important that Yamanouchi even said “the very future of the company hinges” on its success.

North American Facility

The Mazda3 is the only Mazda car being built at the Mexico plant currently

This new plant will allow Mazda to hedge against foreign exchange rates that hurt Japanese exports, tap into new markets, and provide a low-cost manufacturing base. This will be Mazda’s only North American manufacturing site. It previously used a site in Flat Rock, Michigan, but stopped production there in 2012.

Currently, the facility is producing the Mazda3 sedan and employs about 3,000 people. It is expected to reach full capacity by the end of March 2016, and by then, it will also produce the Mazda2 hatchback and a similar model for Toyota.

Here at Bakersfield Mazda we are excited to see Mazda making North America such an important part of the company’s global strategy and hope to see Mazda grow even more.

2014 MAZDA3 Five-Door

2014 Mazda3

Mazda has released its redesigned 2014 MAZDA3. This car is available as either a sedan or five-door hatchback and features a striking new design, a comfortable interior, and a sporty driving feel.

Edmunds.com says the MAZDA3 hatchback “is easily our favorite hatchback in this class.”

Despite being a car designed for those who are relatively economically-minded, the MAZDA3 features an upscale interior that feels luxurious and high-tech. Because of the MAZDA3’s remarkable new technology features, including a vivid seven-inch color touchscreen, Edmunds continues its review by comparing the MAZDA3 to not only to a Mercedes, but to an Audi and BMW, as well.

The 2014 MAZDA3 is available in five trims ranging from the base i Sport model to the top-of-the-line, s Grand Touring trim. There are two engines to choose from. The base engine is a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that makes 155 horsepower. A more powerful 184-horsepower 2.5-liter, four-cylinder can get you to 60 mph in less than 8 seconds. Both engines are part of Mazda’s efficiency-boosting SKYACTIV technology.

Want to get your hands on the best-looking hatchback on the market? Come visit us at Bakersfield Mazda and take the 2014 MAZDA3 out for a spin.

Mazda’s Triple Threat Scores Triple the Best Value Awards

There’s a good reason why the Mazda3, Mazda6, and CX-5 have been dubbed Mazda’s “triple threat.” These three models are responsible for over 80 percent of last year’s sales, and they recently received Best Value Awards from Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

In Kiplinger’s Annual Car Buyer’s Guide, the company ranks vehicles according to their performance, safety, and overall value including residual pricing and fuel economy.

Best Value Award
Best Value Award

As redesigned models, the 2014 Mazda3 i Sport and Mazda6 i Sport won Best New Car Under $20,000 and Best New Car $20,000 – $25,000, respectively.

The 2014 Mazda CX-5 Touring took home the award for Best in Class – Small Crossover. Best in Class vehicles have been in production for at least a year or are built with a powertrain very similar to the one used in previous model years.

Best Value Awards

“Mazda had a really strong showing this year,” said Jessica Anderson, associate editor at Kiplinger’s.

“Both the Mazda3 and Mazda6 redesigns are fantastic examples of what a carmaker can (and should) do with a mainstream model – they’re engagingly designed, far more upscale than you’d think from their price tags and a blast to drive. And the CX-5 is without a doubt the most fun in the crossover segment. It packs all the safety and space you look for in an SUV but has the soul of a sports car. Zoom-Zoom, indeed.”

Come see us at Bakersfield Mazda and check out what the folks at Kiplinger’s loved about Mazda’s triple threat.

Mazda Launches R.A.C.E. Program in Florida High School

Mazda R.A.C.E. Program in Florida High School

Students get excited about R.A.C.E. program

What if 10th grade science with Mr. Snodgrass had turned into a scientific study of racing with Mazda Motorsports? You probably wouldn’t have struggled so uselessly to stay awake, even if the class was just after lunch. Thanks to Mazda’s Racing Accelerates Creative Education (R.A.C.E.) program, over 600 students will have the opportunity to experience this engaging twist on learning.

DeLand High School, located in DeLand, Florida, just 25 minutes from the Rolex 24 endurance race, is Mazda’s first destination for the R.A.C.E. program.

Spearheaded by Mazda Motorsports, the program aims to take an inventive approach to introducing students to real-world applications of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

“We are convinced that our R.A.C.E. program will demonstrate to students in an interesting, fun and engaging way how science, technology, engineering and mathematics are central to the success of Mazda on the race track and in the marketplace. Our goal is to show students just one example of how exciting problem solving can be in the STEM arena and motivate them to always be curious and open to the possibilities,” said John Doonan, director of Mazda Motorsports.

The program, which began Jan. 15, showed students a dynamic presentation detailing the importance of the STEM subjects in motorsports and gave them an up-close look at Mazda’s SKYACTIV technology in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship prototype. Students were also able to interact with professional drivers and engineers.

“Anytime motorsports can be linked to science, technology, engineering and mathematics, it proves to be an attention getting combination,” said DeLand High principal, Mitch Moyer.

We at Bakersfield Mazda know what you’re probably thinking: programs like Mazda’s R.A.C.E. would have saved you from numerous detentions. Why do the younger generations get to have all the fun?

Mazda Heads to the 2014 International CES for the First Time Ever

Mazda is starting the New Year going where it has never gone before, to the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES). The automaker will be showing off its new Mazda Connect system as well as an application platform that encourages the creation of apps to be used in vehicles.

Mazda Connect is described in a press release as technology “designed to offer the convenience and fun of your smart phone in a form that is safe and appropriate for in-vehicle use.”

The system was first seen in the all-new Mazda3, which is now available here at Bakersfield Mazda. The Mazda Connect display will also include the Human Machine Interface, or HMI.

Mazda Connect

2014 Mazda3

The interface was developed to keep drivers’ eyes on the road as much as possible while providing easy access to the vehicle’s convenient features. HMI offers a 7-inch display with maximum legibility; an Active Driving Display, which projects information above the meter hood; and a Commander control, which drivers can operate solely through feeling.

Mazda is also bringing an application platform whose purpose is to give App developers access to information necessary in designing safe applications for in-car use.

When the 2014 CES opens on Jan. 7, all of Mazda’s innovative technology will be aimed at one thing: enhancing your “driving pleasure.”

Three Mazda 2014 Models Receive Top Safety Ratings

As you drive in your 2014 Mazda3, Mazda6, or CX-5 from Bakersfield Mazda, rest assured that your vehicle is tested and proven to keep you safe wherever you go. These three vehicles were awarded with “Top Safety Pick+” distinctions by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Mazda 2014 Models

In a year with new, more stringent criteria, three of Mazda 2014 Models were among only 22 to earn the title of “Top Safety Pick+”, giving Mazda’s brand the second-highest number of safety honors in the industry.

The automaker attributes much of this success to its exclusive SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY, which strives to optimize fuel-efficient performance of the gasoline engine.

“A redesign is not simply a matter of changing a vehicle’s sheet metal draping but involves dramatically altering its insides, outsides and everything in between to make that vehicle not only look great but be more efficient, more powerful and, most importantly, safer,” said Jim O’Sullivan, president and CEO for Mazda North American Operations.

“With our new fleet of SKYACTIV vehicles, the 2014 Mazda3, Mazda6 and CX-5 were created to be the best in their segments from fuel economy and safety to dynamics and performance, and having earned Top Safety Pick+ distinctions is further proof to their success.”

Mazda plans to implement SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY in each of its new models.

So sit back and relax, knowing you can enjoy a nice, safe ride in Mazda 2014 models.

Mazda Gives Consumers the Best Fuel Efficiency Cars in the Industry

In the recently released United States Environmental Protection Agency fuel economy report for cars and light trucks, Mazda was recognized for having a fleet of the most fuel efficient vehicles on the market.

Best Fuel Efficiency

Creating the Best Fuel Efficiency vehciles, Mazda’s adjusted fleet-wide numbers ranked highest in mpg performance and lowest in CO2 emissions.

The company boasts 27.1 mpg in its 2012 model year vehicles, an increase of 2.1 miles per gallon over the 2011 models. According to the report, it is the second largest increase in the industry.

CO2 emissions were reported at 328, the lowest in the industry.

Mazda reached these record numbers through its award-winning SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY, which provides an affordable alternative for those shopping for a new car.

“While other manufacturers have turned their attention to hybrids and electric cars, we chose to focus on perfecting the base technology used in more than 90 percent of the cars and SUVs sold today: the internal combustion engine. Through analyzing and refining this technology, as well as every other component in a modern automobile, Mazda has been able to achieve class-leading fuel economy in nearly every segment it competes in, and bring that technology – at an affordable price – to every customer,” said Jim O’Sullivan, Mazda North American Operations president and CEO.

Check out our Bakersfield Mazda inventory Best Fuel Efficiency fuel-efficient vehicles, and start saving the planet and your wallet today.

Mazda3 Wins First-Ever Innovation Vehicle of the Year Award

The all-new 2014 Mazda3 is a sleek, efficient, safe, technologically-advanced, fun-to-drive hatchback. And, the 2014 Mazda3 Wins the Motor Press Guild’s Innovation Vehicle of the Year.

Mazda3 wins

2014 Mazda3 Redesign

In its first year awarding IVYs, the Motor Guild Press chose to highlight two vehicles that portrayed innovative solutions and exceeded expectations in overall performance value.

The Mazda3 was selected specifically as the winning vehicle under $29,000 for its SKYACTIV technologies, which prioritize fuel economy without sacrificing the fun-to-drive feel, and its advanced safety features.

“The 2014 Mazda3’ success continues to show that compact no longer means cheap, that non-luxury no longer means non-premium,” said Jim O’Sullivan, president and CEO of Mazda North American Operations.

“It’s a great honor to be awarded [Motor Press Guild’s] first-ever IVY. We are proud to offer consumers – and critics – a vehicle that exceeds expectations and innovation not only in driving excitement but also in safety, fuel economy, technology and value. It’s no secret that Mazda3 is our best-selling vehicle worldwide, and it’s no secret as to why,” he added.

Have you stopped by Bakersfield Mazda yet to check out all the 2014 Mazda3 has to offer? Go for a test drive and immediately know why the Mazda3 Wins this years First-Ever Innovation Vehicle of the Year Award.

Mazda Car Technology Earns Mazda6 Popular Mechanic’s ‘Car of the Year’ Award

Mazda6 Car of the Year

The 2014 Mazda6 was named Popular Mechanics’ “ Car of the Year ” and for very good reason.

The Mazda6 ties a neat bow on a well put together package. Its innovative technology makes it possible for the highest safety ratings, the latest in available infotainment features, its sleek styling with bold curves, the practical cabin and its fun-to-drive performance with fuel efficiency reaching up to 40 mpg on the highway to be rolled into one dynamic vehicle.

With retail pricing starting just under $22,000 including the destination fee, how could the 2014 Mazda6 be named anything but “Car of the Year”?

Admittedly, we might be just a teensy bit biased; so don’t just take our word for it. Here’s what Jim Meigs, Popular Mechanics’ editor-in-chief had to say:

“At Popular Mechanics, we love it when bold engineering and great design come together. The Mazda6 really impressed us with how well it delivers so many things modern car owners want: great mileage, fun road-handling, upscale features and looks—and remarkable value.”

Do you believe us now? Stop by Bakersfield Mazda today to see for yourself all the “ Car of the Year ” has to offer.