Mazda2 GT Sport Tech

Mazda2, 2021, side
Mazda2, 2021, front
Mazda2, 2021, rear
Mazda2, 2020, interior
Mazda2, 2020, boot

MAZDA'S popular supermini range has just become larger with the reintroduction of a new, more powerful flagship model.

And it's guaranteed to appeal to drivers who want all the bells and whistles of a premium model car in a small package.

The newcomer is the Mazda2 GT Sport Tech which has been boosted to 115bhp and now comes as a mild hybrid so CO2 emissions have dropped, improving tax benefits.

And while you couldn't really call it a hot hatch that extra power means a nice smooth responsive engine which is never lacking in pace.

If you really want to liven things up dramatically you have to wind up the revs but on this car that never really seems fitting.

And while all Mazda2 models have always been economical when it comes to miles per gallon the addition of mild hybrid technology - it's self charging so no worries about range anxiety - means this Mazda2 is particularly frugal.

Officially averaging more than 56 miles per gallon - I managed to easily achieve more than 53 mpg - and with a 0-62 mph acceleration time of 9.1 seconds it's a nice all round package.

And when it comes to creature comforts it's up there with the mega expensive luxury saloons.

With two-tone leather upholstery the cabin has a real upmarket feel to it and keyless entry and keyless start means no messing about looking for the keys in your pocket.

With the winter now casting its shadow over driving it's a real treat to have a car which not only has heated seats - with three different settings - but a heated steering wheel too.

Add to that a colour head-up display projecting your speed and navigation directions into the windscreen and a reversing camera giving both a bird's eye view of the car and a view of what's behind you and you really feel cosseted by this little Mazda.

There's even a front facing camera to ensure you can park perfectly between any set of parking bay lines.

Unlike the majority of cars, which have dashboard mounted touch screens, the monitor on the Mazda2 is controlled by a rotary knob near the gearshift and is all the better for it.

It's easier to activate any onboard features and - unlike with touch screens - there is less tendency to take your eyes off the road ahead.

There's an impressive range of safety features too including blind spot monitoring, cross city alert and rear smart city braking.

And while there is a lane departure warning system it's sensibly purely audible and - unlike on many cars - does not alarm you by trying to physically return you to between the white lines.

The ride quality on this supermini is top notch as is the handling at speed. And like all Mazda's I have ever driven the six-speed manual gearbox is spot on.

FAST FACTS

Mazda2 GT Sport Tech

Price: £20,945

Mechanical: 115bhp, 1,496cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via six speed manual gearbox.

Max Speed:124 mph

0-62mph: 9.1 secs

Combined MPG: 56.5

Insurance Group: 22

C02 emissions: 113 g/km

Bik rating: 27%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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