Just been watching a review on the Mazda 3 MPS.
Looks like the VXR and Ford ST's best be looking in their rear view mirrors.
Under the bonnet you’ll find the same 260PS, 380Nm torque 2.3 chain-cam turbo engine as fitted to the four-wheel drive Mazda 6 MPS.
The car has electronic traction control and dynamic stability control, like the Mazda 3 Sport. Unlike the 150PS Sport, it also has a mechanical limited slip differential. But as well as that, in an attempt to get all that power and torque to the tarmac, it also has a steering-angle-sensitive throttle damping system. The idea is that when the steering is turned the system curbs the amount torque steer before the front-end heads for a kerb.