Will black detailing justify a limited-run price hike?
Mazda 2 Sport BlackÂ
Engine: 1.5-liter, four-cylinder, petrol
Gearbox: 5-spd manual
Kerb weight: 1050kg
Top speed: 117mph
Fuel economy: 57.7mpg
CO2 rating: 111g/km
Does 2017 seems a long time ago? It was way back then that Mazda last refreshed its Mazda 2, so clearly this further refresh is long overdue. At first glance you might wonder whatâ€™s going on since itâ€™s called the Sport Black but itâ€™s a white car. Mazda has in fact gone subtle.
The Black refers to some black accents, such as the spoiler, skirts, grille, alloys and so on. Itâ€™s quite discreet. Then thereâ€™s the Sport bit. Mazda has refreshed the engine line-up which has meant dumping the diesel option. That means you can have the 2 with a 1.5-litre engine, with either 74bhp, 89bhp or 113bhp. This Sport version gets the middle power version â€“ go figure.
So, weâ€™ve deduced that the Mazda 2 Sport Black is a Mazda 2, but itâ€™s neither terribly black nor terribly sporty. But on the other hand Mazda hasnâ€™t messed about with what were a good set of mechanicals. With a sensibly low weight allied to the Skyactiv-G engine, you have a supermini that can make decently rapid progress without burning through too much of the worldâ€™s resources.
The five-speed manual transmission â€“ thereâ€™s a six-speed in the 113bhp version â€“ is excellent, and helps you to work the engine, which is one that responds well to a bit of a poke with a pointy gearstick.
Handling and ride are commendably controlled, and really you have a package here which works nicely in balance with itself. As we say, itâ€™s not overtly sporty but itâ€™s probably enough for most people.
Again, Mazda hasnâ€™t messed with the cabin, which is comfy, clear and sensible, much like the seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system. A few Sport Black touches around the cabin make a minor lift in the ambience, but overall this is a perfectly decent place to be.
Some might find the lack of razzmatazz a bit disappointing, but plenty of others are bound to find this supermini a delightful mix of sensible, attractive qualities. Itâ€™s well balanced, handsome and made classier by the discretion with which glossy black has been applied.
Thereâ€™s a premium over the corresponding Mazda 2 version of about Â£1000 â€“ itâ€™s based on the SE-L Nav+ – and for some that will prove attractive, particularly as itâ€™s all based on a car that was enjoyably refreshed just last year.