Future Mazda vehicles will not only get the GVC set-up, but also new, generously-proportioned front seats that are designed to more firmly hold the passengers and reduce pressure points on the occupant’s body.
New models will also get driving positions which 'allow for a comfortable range of movement for every joint in the body' and pedal locations which Mazda engineers promise will be 'close to ideal for all sizes of driver'.
Frederick Hartnick, of Mazda’s German Research and Development Centre, said: "It's basic human nature to want to minimise physical effort and maintain balance.
"Humans sense roll and pitch vehicle movement through their eyes and G-forces through the body. The older Mazda seats did not locate the occupant firmly against the bolsters, so the occupant could experience sudden movement before coming into sudden contact with the bolster."
Passengers' bodies counters these small, violent, movements by tensing muscle groups, especially the main muscle in the side of the neck which helps support the head. This leads to stress and driver fatigue.
The overall philosophy of reducing the amount of driver effort at the wheel, properly supporting the driver, improving the driving position and lines of sight out of the car and greatly reducing the amount of unexpected shock loading on the driver’s body will become central to Mazda engineering and design policy.
One Mazda engineer admitted to Autocar that the company was rejecting the notion that improving driving dynamics inevitably meant increasing a car's general agility. "We cannot optimise our vehicles for what is a small customer base [which wants sportier chassis tuning]. A more relaxed driving experience frees the driver’s mind, and will make the drive more fun."
Mazda sources insist that the new philosophy of maximum driver comfort, more effortless progress and greatly reducing fatigue over long journeys is more in tune with shifting global tastes, seen in rapidly expanding trends for 'wellness' therapies and 'human-centred' personal luxury.
GVC - How it works
We experienced the G Vectoring Control on both the current Mazda 3 and Mazda 6 at a test track on the outskirts of Paris. Mazda engineers say the longer-term strategy is to engineer cars which maximise "smooth transitions between the different G-forces generated by braking, turning and accelerating".
Rather than using classic torque vectoring techniques such as braking individual wheels to encourage a car to, for example, turn more briskly into a bend, the Mazda GVC utilises tiny changes in engine torque output to "optimism the vertical loading on the tyre’s contact patch".