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Mazda3 Hatchback Turbo 2023 Review: Combining Accessibility and Luxury

Image Source: hadkhanong / Shutterstock

The Mazda3 has consistently been recommended as one of the top compact cars, with the latest generation being commended for its stylish and premium appeal compared to competitors like the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla. By opting for the turbocharged engine in the higher trim levels, the Mazda3 transcends the typical compact car experience, offering a taste of luxury.

Mazda has strategically positioned itself as a premium brand, evident in its lineup where every model boasts stylish exteriors and luxurious interiors. The Mazda3 hatchback presents a sophisticated and sleek design, setting it apart from traditional compacts. Its upscale appearance outshines that of the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla.

Inside the Mazda3, you will immediately notice the difference compared to its competitors. The interior is elegantly crafted with high-quality materials and a minimalist layout that avoids excessive styling. While lacking a fully digital gauge cluster like the Civic, the Mazda3’s interior remains visually appealing. The infotainment system is modern and sleek, although operation via a center console dial can be less intuitive compared to a touchscreen.

Beyond the technology features, the front seats are exceptionally comfortable, offering an easy adjustment for the ideal driving position. However, the Mazda3 sacrifices interior space for its refined exterior design. With a passenger volume of 92.7 cubic feet, the Mazda3 hatchback falls short compared to the Civic hatchback’s 99.0 cubic feet. Additionally, the Mazda3 provides slightly less front headroom and rear legroom than the Civic, resulting in a more compact feel especially with four passengers onboard.

The Mazda3 distinguishes itself as a lively compact offering more power than its rivals. Equipped with a standard naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine producing 191 horsepower, the Mazda3 surpasses the power output of the Honda Civic, Hyundai Elantra, and Toyota Corolla. While most trim levels feature a six-speed automatic, the highest S Premium trim level offers a six-speed manual transmission, a rarity among competitors except for the Subaru Impreza. Additionally, the Mazda3 stands out by offering all-wheel drive, unlike most of its rivals.

In terms of fuel efficiency, the base Mazda3 engine achieves a rating of 27 mpg city, 35 mpg highway, and 30 mpg combined, with lower figures when equipped with all-wheel drive. Comparatively, the base Civic and Corolla hatchbacks deliver a slightly better fuel economy.

For those seeking a more exhilarating driving experience, the Mazda3 Turbo stands out with a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine producing 227 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. Exclusive to the turbo trim, this engine option offers impressive performance, albeit only paired with a six-speed automatic and all-wheel drive.

Behind the wheel, the Mazda3 delivers a delightful driving experience, especially with the turbocharged engine. With controlled body roll, well-weighted steering, and a firm ride, the Mazda3 excels in both agility and refinement. Whether cruising through city streets or tackling winding roads, the Mazda3 offers a premium driving experience, complemented by a quiet cabin.

On the safety front, the Mazda3 includes standard driver assistance features like automatic emergency braking and lane departure alert, with advanced features available on higher trim levels.

Pricing for the 2023 Mazda3 hatchback starts at $24,615, with various trim levels available to suit different preferences. The Turbo variant starts at $33,315, offering a higher level of performance.

Overall, the 2023 Mazda3 continues to set itself apart in the compact car segment with its stylish design, luxurious interior, and engaging driving dynamics. The Mazda3 transcends the traditional compact car category and competes effectively against entry-level luxury models.

Image Source: hadkhanong / Shutterstock

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