No less than one of the great small cars of all time, the MAZDA3 has earned a spot on our list of the 10 Coolest Cars under $18,000 in every year of its existence, and is the only car to make the list five years in a row. So, when we received official word that the next-generation model would make its debut at the 2008 Los Angeles Auto Show, we were simultaneously excited to see it and nervous about
Mazda messing with its biggest home run since the Miata. After seeing the first pictures, though, we're just plain excited. The
sedan looks great, and Mazda is promising "a more refined sporty ride, top class fuel economy and quietness," all of which we can get behind. Details are scarce, but we do know the engine lineup will include 2.0- and 2.5-liter four-cylinder engines. We're looking forward to learning more at the show, and to seeing the five-door
hatchback version, too.