2017.5 Mazda6 Adds Luxury to an Affordable Sedan

Mazda's oddly-named sedan gets new technology and premium packages add leather galore. 

Autotrader.ca

For this model year, Mazda is pushing for a thinner line between luxury and affordability, without much compromise. All models in Mazda's lineup are being updated with more standard luxuries and technology previously only available on premium vehicles.

Although it doesn't share the 2018 moniker, the 2017.5 Mazda6 is next up to receive the luxury treatment, and will hit dealerships this October. Despite the improvements, prices remain the same at $21,945 for a base model and $30,695 for a top-trim variant. The new Mazda6 now comes equipped with a 7-inch Mazda Connect infotainment system, which includes phone pairing as standard, although there's no word of Android Auto or Apple CarPlay integration yet.  G-Vectoring is now fitted to every trim, improving handling and driver confidence.

The entry-level Mazda6 Sport may be the cheapest of the trims but it is in no way cheap, quality-wise. The Sport features a backup camera, keyless entry, 17-inch alloy wheels, cloth seats, and an electronic parking brake. The 2017.5 Sport adds Rear Cross-Traffic Alert and Blind Spot Monitoring, further upholding Mazda's commitment to safety.

Starting at $24,195, the Mazda6 Touring comes complete with more technology like Smart City Brake Support, rain-sensing wipers, dual-zone automatic climate control, and automatic headlights, plus leatherette seats. Mazda added the new Touring Premium Package for 2017.5 Touring, a $1,425 add-on for the BOSE/Moonroof/Satellite Package (which does exactly what it sounds like). The premium package adds an advanced exterior lighting system, auto-dimming mirrors, Homelink Garage Door Opener, and leather-upholstered seats. 

The sporty Mazda6 Grand Touring remains at the top of the lineup, equipped with paddle-shifters, rear lip spoiler, Radar Cruise Control, Lane Keep Assist, and an Active Driving Display (Mazda's Head Up Display). The GT Premium Package adds a heated steering wheel with "chidori" stitching, regenerative braking, and Nappa leather seats. 

Mazda's decision to designate this year's Mazda6 the 2017.5 is odd, but it hopefully means that major changes are coming to the sedan for the 2018 model year.