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Mazda zoom to success.

Mazda is the UK's fastest growing car brand of the decade, living up to its promotional tag of zoom-zoom.

During the past five years, Mazda has outgrown all other car brands in the UK, culminating with more than 50,000 sales here last year for the first time and a share of the total UK car market of more than 2%.

The overall rate of growth since 2001 is a remarkable 250%, which started with the all-new Mazda 6 model.

Since then every model in the range has been replaced, with the accent firmly upon a winning formula of fun and practicality, endorsed by the zoom-zoom theme.

The RX-8 four-door sports coupe took Mazda into a completely new segment of the market and strengthened the brand's sporting image.

For 2007, there are two more sporting models ( the Mazda 3 MPS superhatch and the MX-5 Roadster Coupe plus the launch of the all-new Mazda CX-7 crossover SUV later in the year, which will attract new buyers to the brand.

Also looming large on the horizon is the aerodynamic new Mazda 2, which will be here by summer. Epitomising the brand's sporting credentials are the MPS models, such as the Mazda 3 MPS and Mazda 6 MPS, boasting the same 256bhp engine.

In the case of the Mazda 3 MPS this translates into 155mph performance with rocket-like acceleration from standstill to 60mph in just a fraction over six seconds, which is remarkable for a car costing under pounds 20,000.

Even in the case of the larger and heavier family-size Mazda 6 MPS saloon, there is 150mph performance with acceleration from rest to 60mph in just over six and a half seconds.

The recently revised MX-5 roadster is now joined by the Coupe Cabriolet version, which boasts the fastest-folding steel roof of all in just 12 seconds.

It comes with a choice of 1.8-litre and two-litre engines, with the latter achieving a top speed of 135mph and acceleration to 60mph in under eight seconds, yet attracts relatively lowly group 13 insurance.

The Association of Scottish Motoring Writers named the Mazda MX-5 sports car Best Drop-Top in its Scottish Car of the Year Awards 2006, commenting, "the latest generation Mazda MX-5 offers unbeatable topless fun for the money". Mazda has claimed the top place in one of the world's largest-ever studies into car reliability. Almost 92% of the Mazda cars surveyed, aged between three and nine years old, suffered no mechanical failure of any type ( outperforming all other brands.

The study, which was conducted by independent automotive warranty specialists, Warranty Direct, looked at the reliability of more than 450,000 vehicles from 33 manufacturers across the UK and USA.

Mazda Motors UK managing director Rob Lindley, says: "This survey confirms that Mazda reliability is the very best.

"To beat such global quality icon brands as Toyota, Honda, Porsche, BMW and Audi is a fine achievement.

"Over the past five years, Mazda has grown sales in the UK more than any other car brand ( perhaps this has something to do with our legendary reliability."

BBC Top Gear magazine named the new Mazda MX-5 Roadster Coupe its Roadster of the Year 2006.

For the second year in a row Mazda scooped this prestigious crown, following last year's victory for the Mazda MX-5 soft-top, the world's most popular sports car.
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Apr 12, 2007
Words:555
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