The Mazdaspeed 3 doesn't need awd to compete with the WRX or GTIs, they already outperform those, the mazdaspeed 3 is in the same class as the new gen evo and genesis 3.8. If you were to add awd to the speed3 it would put it with the sti and 5.0 mustangs. Speed 3s run a good 13.8 in the 1/4 mile, as we know about torque steer and too much power for the fwd to handle, having to add a rear motor mount is essential to perform accurate shifts. Adding awd will put us in the mid 13s.
Next MazdaSpeed3 Could Get All-Wheel Drive
The 2014 Mazda3 has debuted, and continues to follow the Japanese automaker's Skyactiv reinvention. The efficiency-driven brand maintains that an absolute emphasis on dynamics remain however, and a reportedly new all-wheel drive system could be making its way down to the MazdaSpeed3 as well. The current 2013 MazdaSpeed3 uses a turbocharged engine to deliver 263 hp to the front wheels. While the pocket rocket is undoubtedly fun, the one knock has been that excess power sent to the front wheels affects driving performance and steering feel. An all-wheel-drive system would redistribute the power to all wheels, greatly improving driving dynamics, and giving the performance car an extra weapon against rivals like the Volkswagen GTI and Subaru WRX. Australia's Car recently reported that Mazda3 program manager Takeo Mariuchi said "we have had many questions regarding the MPS (as the MazdaSpeed3 is referred to in other markets). We need to watch the market requirements." Managing director of Mazda Australia suggested we could see it down the line: "It's still on our radar and the factory is still sort of considering it. The priority is to get all the base cars rolled out and set up and worry about the special models going forward." The current Mazda3 is built on the same architecture as the 2014 Mazda CX-5, meaning it could adopt the AWD system currently used on the crossover as well. Source: Drive
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