Mazda Motor Corporation has added a five-speed manual transmission model to its next-generation sports compact Mazda Axela. Premium grade 23S vehicles equipped with the new transmission go on sale today at Mazda, Mazda Anfini and Mazda Autozam dealerships throughout Japan.
The five-speed manual transmission used in Axela 23S employs a short-throw shift lever and upgraded synchronizers to ensure quick, smooth and precise gear changes. A highly efficient shift and select mechanism provides a smooth operating feel. Further, the final gear has a greater gear ratio that fully exploits engine power in all ranges.
Axela (known as Mazda3 in overseas markets) was recently named runner-up in the prestigious 2004 European Car of the Year competition. This was the second consecutive year that one of Mazda's vehicles has been awarded second-place honors. The back-to-back, second-place finishes is also a first among Japanese automakers.
[Outline of the five-speed manual transmission Axela 23S]
Short-throw shift lever plus smoother operation
In order to achieve a shorter throw combined with enhanced handling, the transmission employs linked double-cone synchronizers in first and second gears. The Teflon-coated control cable together with a special surface treatment on the shafts of the three links, shift rod, crank lever and control rod help to significantly reduce friction.
Upgraded shift and select system
Increased gearshift lever rigidity and the improved transmission mechanism to lessen over-shifting, along with the adoption of gapless joints connected with the change cables, help to achieve a precise and smooth shifting feel.
Final gear with greater gear ratio and close ratio gears for smooth driving at all engine speeds
First to fourth gears are placed closer together resulting in smoother gear changes with minimal loss of engine speed. This allows the engine to consistently operate near its powerband resulting in a smooth, enjoyable driving experience.