Mazda updates one of its most iconic elements for 2023

Mazda updates one of its most iconic elements for 2023

No, it’s not the Wankel engine, but a new red metallic paint.


Mazda updated its iconic Soul Red Crystal livery for 2023.

It’s called “Artisan Red Premium” and supports Mazda’s obvious pursuit of high-gloss finishes.

Currently, the brand’s vibrant and most popular Soul Red Crystal color – offered on every car sold except for the BT-50 ute – uses multiple technologies to showcase its shine.



The first is a three-layer paint system with a top clear layer, a middle translucent paint layer, and a third base layer that can reflect or absorb specific reflective light.

The other is a technology that evenly aligns the aluminum particles (the shiny bits) in the paint as the vehicle is painted to both create depth and promote luminosity.

“Artisan Red Premium” improves on “Soul Red Crystal” by introducing a new jet-black pigment into the deepest light-absorbing layer that it claims is “[produce] a deep depth and richness that renders high contrast.”



The announcement comes to mark the 10th anniversary of the launch of Mazda’s Soul Red Premium – the color was updated to ‘Soul Red Crystal’ in 2017 with the launch of the second-generation Mazda CX-5 family SUV.

Since its launch in 2012, Mazda’s signature red livery has lost 13.7 percent across all model lines.

Interestingly, the fourth-generation Mazda MX-5 (since 2015) has a 39 percent “soul red” usage rate over its lifetime – with almost half of the cars sold in the first year painted red.



Mazda’s CX-5 midsize SUV averages about 18 percent, and its smaller CX-3 SUV averages 21 percent.

After more than a decade working in the product planning and marketing departments of brands like Kia, Subaru and Peugeot, Justin Narayan returned as an auto writer – his first job ever in the industry.

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