Old time partners Chang’an and Mazda are about to set up a new sub brand for the Chinese car market, as the two are now free of their light bulb partner (Lightbulb being the Chinese term for the spare wheel in a date) Ford, they have more freedom in the Chinese market. Chang’an Mazda’s China line up is old, the Mazda3 currently being made by Chang’an is the 2008 model – the rest of the world have already moved onto the second generation model which was launched in 2008 in Japan, effectively putting Mazda 3 years behind the game in China.
The second generation Mazda3 is on sale in China as an imported hatchback, the new sedan is about to be made in China and will hit the market at the same time as the facelift model goes on sale the world over. The current 2008 Mazda3 will not face death in China, the platform will be recycled for a new China only brand from Chang’an Mazda, the company will join Nissan, Honda and GM in developing a Chinese sub brand that could one day be exported to foreign markets. The Mazda3 is not expected to undergo massive changes for the new sub brand, instead its expected that it will get a front end makeover rather than completely new metal according to Chinese media reports.