A history of the Mazda 2
An overview of the Mazda 2 model.
Find out more about the history and development of the Mazda 2.
First hitting the consumer car market in 1996, the Mazda 2 has been a successful subcompact model with consumers across the world. Also known as the Mazda Demio, this model has been developed into three subsequent generations. Although it has also been sold under other names such as the Ford Festiva Mini Wagon, the Mazda Metro and the Mazda 121.
The Mazda 2 is classed as a supermini and the designs came about after the success of the Mazda D-platform. The 1st Generation design was sold from between 1996 to 2002 and was a 5-door hatchback. It came with two engine sizes, in either 1.3L or 1.5L capacity. Although initial motoring reviews were lukewarm, appraisals of the DW 1st Generation became increasingly positive and the Mazda Demio was soon a success with consumers. Other B-segment minivans have since been created after taking inspiration from the Demio, with Fiat releasing the Idea model and Opel launching the Meriva.
Few alterations were made to the Mazda 1st Generation, with some tweaks being made to the exterior and upgrades commissioned for the cabin air filtration system. Updates were made in 1999 and 2002, although in 1998 the brand did decide to change their logo and this affected production across models. Its advertising campaign was fronted by Scott Pippen, an NBA star who lent his name to the Demio in their TV commercials.
The Second Generation Mazda 2 made its debut in 2002 and was a key model up until its revision in 2007. Although the world market knew the model as the Mazda 2, the Japanese market retained the name ‘Demio’. The Mazda 2 has been a popular model with consumers and has reached as high as 7th place in Japanese domestic car sales.
On the back of their former success, the current 3rd Generation Mazda 2 has been on the market since 2007. Various versions have been produced to suit different markets with the Japanese, North American and Chinese markets all receiving distinct 3rd Generation Mazda 2 models. Europe received a three-door hatchback version, while a sedan was released for the Australasia market.