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Mazda2 production begins ahead of Europe sales in 2015

Mazda has given its Mazda2 subcompact the sharp creases and sportier stance of the brand’s new Kodo design language.

The five-door hatchback will go on sale in Europe and the United States next year after deliveries in Japan begin in the third quarter of this year.

The fourth-generation model is the first Mazda2 to get the full suite of Mazda’s fuel-saving Skyactiv technologies, including new engines, transmissions, body and chassis. Mazda already offers some of the technologies in the CX-5, Mazda6 and Mazda3.

The updated Mazda2 has the curvy fender flairs, sharp side creasing and large grille typical of Mazda’s Kodo styling. It has a bolder posture than its predecessor with a longer hood and rear-slung cabin accentuated by a raked rear as well as wheels pushed to the corners.

A concept version, called the Hazumi, debuted at this year’s Geneva auto show.

In Europe, the Mazda2 will get Mazda’s new 1.5-liter Skyactiv-D diesel engine and a 1.5-liter Skyactiv-G gasoline engine. According to media reports, the five-door Mazda2 will cost between 12,500 and 13,000 euros in Germany. The current model starts at 12,600 euros.

Sales of the Mazda2 in Europe fell 6 percent in the first five months to 10,654, according to data from JATO Dynamics.

Mazda2 production began this week at Mazda’s plant in Hofu, southwestern Japan, for the domestic market and certain export destinations. The U.S. version is expected to be sourced from Mazda’s new plant in Salamanca, Mexico. The factory opened earlier this year and builds the Mazda3.