Test all limits in the Nissan Navara
Test all limits in the Nissan Navara

More is more with the Mazda BT-50

After the global reveal of the all-new Mazda BT-50 earlier this month, fans have eagerly been waiting for more detailed information on this fully redesigned bakkie option from the Japanese automaker. These are the key things you need to know:

Model line-up

The model line-up has been aligned with Mazda’s passenger car range and consists of Active, Dynamic and Individual derivatives. The Active model features a new 1.9-litre diesel engine with either a six-speed manual or automatic gearbox, whereas it is auto only for the Dynamic and Individual models which feature the new 3.0-litre turbodiesel. Interestingly, only the top-end Individual derivative is available in a 4×4 drivetrain – all other models are available in rear-drive only, though a locking rear differential is standard across the range.


The 1.9-litre diesel engine specified for Active models develops 110 kW of power and 350 Nm of peak torque. A dual-mass flywheel helps to absorb the engine’s harmonic vibrations. The base model is coupled with a six-speed manual transmission.

The Dynamic and Individual derivatives are powered by a 3.0-litre diesel, delivering 140 kW and 450 Nm of torque. It is mated to a six-speed automatic using a fast-response hydraulic control system. The electronic control module is programmed to match the torque delivery characteristics of the engine, and features control modes such as ‘Skip Gear Shift’, ‘Slip lock-up’ and ‘Slope Control’ to ensure rapid response to driving conditions. 

Safety & tech

It is in the technological and safety advances that the BT-50 truly shines. Stepping things up to the same level as its competitors, the bakkie boasts an integrated infotainment system using either a 7- or 9-inch display. The system has intuitive smartphone connectivity in the form of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Sound is delivered through a six-speaker system on the Active model, while the Dynamic and Individual have eight speakers. 

Notably, the BT-50 received a 5-Star ANCAP Safety rating in 2020, issued by the Australasian New Car Assessment Programme, recording solid category performances for Adult Occupant Protection, Child Occupant Protection and Safety Assist.

New standard safety features throughout the line-up include auto door lock, reverse camera, smart advanced keyless entry, driver-, passenger-, knee (driver)-, curtain- and side airbags. Safe and stable braking is ensured by the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD). The Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) suite includes a Traction Control System (TCS) with Hill Launch Assist (HLA), Hill Descent Control (HDC), Roll Over Mitigation (ROM) as well as Trailer Sway Mitigation (TSM).

Styling & design

Truly expressing Mazda’s Kodo (or “Soul in Motion”) design language, the all-new BT-50’s design will certainly have heads turning. Taking cues from Mazda’s SUV range, the key elements are distinct and sharp, perfectly complementing the sleek new front end. Rounding off the aesthetic are new alloy wheel designs, offered as 17-inch in the Active model and 18-inch in the Dynamic and Individual models. Standard exterior features include LED headlamps, daytime running lights, rear combination lamps and rain-sensing wipers. Exterior colour options include Gun Blue, Rock Grey, Red Volcano, Ice White, Ingot Silver and Concrete grey.

From a functionality perspective, the load bay is a generous 1 571 mm long, 1 150 mm wide and is 800 mm high. Braked towing mass on the1.9-litre models is 2 100 kg, and 3 500 kg on the 3.0-litre models.

The interior is completely redesigned to offer superb comfort and space, and features a horizontal layout of the instrument panel which extends to the door trim on each side. Wide-opening doors and generous rear seats ensure a comfortable ride for rear passengers.

Apart from the 7- or 9-inch infotainment display, the new model features an instrument cluster with two round analogue dials flanking a 4.2-inch multi-information display. The panel surface is finished in pure black, creating a striking contrast against the silver-rimmed dials.

Creature comforts

From increased seat comfort to an impressive set of driver aids, the all-new BT-50 is designed to make even the longest journeys an absolute breeze. Features across the range include:

  • Auto cruise control
  • Lane keep assist
  • Reverse camera
  • Parking sensors (rear)
  • Six-way power-adjustable front seats

On the Dynamic and Individual models, the following is added:

  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel and gearshift knob
  • Dual-zone climate control
  • Manually adjustable lumbar support (driver)
  • Front parking sensors
  • Auto headlamp levelling
  • Rear centre arm rest with cup holders

Pricing confirmed

BT-50 1.9-litre Active 6MT 4×2:    R611 900

BT-50 1.9-litre Active 6AT 4×2:     R647 900

BT-50 3.0-litre Dynamic 6AT 4×2: R759 400

BT-50 3.0-litre Individual 6AT 4×4: R794 400

*All units sold in South Africa will be produced and imported from Thailand and come standard with a 3-year/unlimited kilometre service plan, 3-year/unlimited kilometre warranty and 3-year/unlimited kilometre roadside assistance. 

Check out the live reveal: https://fb.watch/v/ald0tz79e/

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