It looks scoopy. With that nostril on the bonnet, a deeper front bumper and big rear wing, there’s more than a hint of the Subaru Impreza STi about the MPS – albeit with a bit more curvy ‘Nagare’ styling.
Mazda hasn’t released any technical details on the 3 MPS yet, but expect it to be powered by a revised version of Mazda’s 2.3-litre turbocharged four-pot, likely putting out a bit more than the current MPS’s 256bhp. And all through the front wheels.
Mazda has worked hard on stiffening the 3’s chassis for 2009, so the new MPS should be a sharper drive than the current MPS, which has always been just a fraction anodyne.
Prices should remain similar to the current MPS when the new model goes on sale in June, so expect an asking price around the £19k mark.
Mazda has also announced that it will unveil an eco-friendly ‘i-stop’ version of the 3 alongside the MPS in Geneva. Stop-start technology and Mazda’s 2.0-litre direct-injection petrol engine will combine to return a 12 per cent improvement in consumption, says Mazda… but we’ll still take the MPS, ta.