Mazda prides itself on becoming the premium brand among mainstream vehicles. For them to achieve this, Mazda’s engineers placed immense attention to detail to further put the Mazda 3 ahead of the competition, even applying the same level of engineering that premium luxury brands do to their cars. As we went through our 3-day media drive with the all-new Mazda 3, we were able to learn the unique engineering decisions that were done to the vehicle, namely, its wipers and doors, which are a lot more intelligent than you think.
Simply take a look at how the main wiper blade’s length is able to take-up the entire height of the windshield. This design lets the driver have excellent visibility even during torrential rains due to the large surface area that the wipers are able to reach. Notice how the wiper blades also extend close to the edge of the actual windshield, leaving no area unwiped. This is something that we really appreciated as we encountered isolated rains on our way to Clark, Pampanga.
Another intelligent design decision by Mazda’s engineers is to let the wipers vary its torque (or the force it takes to make the wipers move across the windshield), taking into account the windshield’s curvature and resistance due to wind, rain, grime, mud, just to name a few. This intelligent design detail prevents the blades from experiencing accelerated wear and tear. The intelligent wiper blades are also able to take note of the windshield’s curvature, ensuring that the blades are firmly pressing down onto the windshield all the time and whatever the situation. Speaking of which, the wiper blades’ frameless design, similar to PIAA’s Si-Tech wipers, enables it to be flexible enough to always apply constant pressure onto the windshield’s curved surface.
Lastly, the doors. What about it? Well, Mazda wants to achieve a door that is airtight in order to provide excellent outside noise suppression as well as sublime interior acoustics from the sound system. They also want to create a door that closes easily and solidly with a reassuringly satisfying thud found in premium cars.
To achieve this, Mazda had two ideas. First was to create a slanted or angled door design, but then, this breaks Mazda’s human-centric philosophy as it will make the doors feel heavy and let it slam towards the person as they get out of the vehicle.
The second one involves some neat engineering from its air conditioning team, and this is the one that they decided to push through with. The design involves a door sensor, wherein once the doors are milliseconds or a few millimeters from closing, vents within the air conditioning system will open automatically to eliminate the build-up of air pressure inside the car, thus creating a vacuum (absence of air pressure) in order to create an airtight seal for the doors, as well as a reassuring and satisfying door thud. Do not worry as the system also considers whether the driver has left the air recirculation turned on or not.
These are just a few of the intelligent design details that we’ve been able to discover. We’ll let you know more as we go along with our journey to further discover this year’s most anticipated compact sedan and hatchback. Stay tuned!