2014 Mazda 3i Grand Touring check drive: Fuel-miser i model might not be the enthusiast’s decision, but it’s a great compact vehicle

Fuel-miser i model could not be the enthusiast’;s option, but it truly is a great compact auto



2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

The 2014 Mazda 3 begins the third generation of the Japanese company’;s most well-known vehicle. Photo by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

In back, the car seems to be lower than the final model, with standard red taillight lenses, as opposed to these flashy clear ones on the 2013 model. Photo by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

The 2014 Mazda 3 has a wheelbase is longer than the outgoing model by 2.4 inches, it also lowered ceiling height by half an inch, and acquired 1.6 inche Photograph by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

The steering feels a bit lazier than the final 3 we keep in mind, and we are pondering if the s versions skew tighter. Photo by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

Outward visibility is good from virtually any angle. The tiny C pillars are effortless to avoid when seeking for cross targeted traffic, and a swift flick of the head Photograph by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

The Mazda 3 family ranges from $ 16,945 to $ 25,995. In comparison, the Focus costs $ 16,810-$ 23,077 and the Honda Civic commences at about 18K and goes up Photo by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

The Mazda 3 i Grand Touriing has a 2.-liter, 155-hp, 150 lb-ft DOHC I4 with a 6-speed automated. Photograph by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

The Mazda 3 i Grand Touriing has a 2.-liter, 155-hp, 150 lb-ft DOHC I4 with a 6-speed automatic. Photograph by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

All the panel gaps within are tight, and we genuinely dug the faux carbon fiber trim on the steering wheel and doors. Photo by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

The 3 is nevertheless a bargain at reduce gear amounts, but at $ 25,085, this certain example will value you a whole lot of scratch. Photograph by Jake Lingeman.

2014 Mazda 3 i Grand Touring Photo by: Jake Lingeman

All the panel gaps inside are tight, and we truly dug the faux carbon fiber trim on the steering wheel and doors. Photo by Jake Lingeman.

What is it?

The 2014 Mazda 3 marks the introduction of the third generation of Mazda’;s most well-known automobile. The first generation was produced from 2003-2008, the 2nd gen started in 2009. The 3 obtained a significant styling update for 2014, ditching the smiley face for the company’;s new 5-sided grille.

The 3 moves more than to the company’;s Kodo layout language, meaning “soul of motion,” (Editor’;s note: Supposedly). Honestly, the car’;s physique does seem to be to movement. The front end is much more upright than the outgoing model’;s, and it characteristics cleaner projector headlights. The fog lights are on prime of the reduced intakes alternatively of above, and the grille looks more like a cat’;s nose—sorry, Kia–than the gaping maw it was prior to.

In back, the automobile looks lower than the last model did, with normal red taillight lenses as opposed to the flashy clear ones on the 2013 model. Styling lines run from the bottom of the rear bumper up to the center of the trunk.

The 2014 Mazda 3’;s wheelbase is longer than the outgoing model by 2.4 inches. It also lowered the height of the automobile by half an inch and acquired one.6 inches of hip room.

Our Mazda 3 i Grand Touring trim came with the 2.-liter Skyactiv-G engine generating 155 hp at 6,000 rpm and 150 lb-ft of torque, peaking at 4,000 rpm. Upgraded s designs get a 2.5-liter Skyactiv 4 making 184 hp and 185 lb-ft of torque. That would be the a single that we select, had been it not for the absence of a stick shift. Mixed mileage for our model is rated at 34 mpg with the 6-velocity automatic manual rowers get 33 mpg combined.

In addition to standard characteristics, the Grand Touring trim gets nearly every little thing Mazda gives on the 3, like power sliding-glass moonroof, variable leatherette-trimmed heated sport seats, 6-way power-adjustable driver’;s seat with manual-lumbar adjustment, dual-zone automatic climate manage and blind spot monitoring. As for enjoyment, the Grand Touring adds the Mazda Connect infotainment technique with a 7-inch complete-shade touchscreen display, multifunction control, voice command, rearview camera, navigation and a premium Bose audio method that rivals something you can get at your regional vehicle-audio retailer.

All the panel gaps inside are tight, and we really dug the faux carbon-fiber trim on the steering wheel and doors. The leatherette seats are comfortable, and we identified it effortless to dial-in a good driving position.

How does it drive?

The word we’;d use is “comfortable.” The reduce-powered i trim automobile is not produced for fans and the 2.-liter needs to be floored for any kind of aggressive acceleration. Passing on the expressway is a bit of a crapshoot, but the auto gets up to pace sooner or later. We drove the 2.5-liter-outfitted 3 a while back, and found it significantly far more eager to zip all around. The 6-speed automated is tuned for efficiency with the SKYACTIV engine. It provides smooth operation, and keeps the little mill in the meat of its torque. Once more, we’;d prefer the 6-pace manual, but at least the automobile stick is in the up-is-downshift format.

The steering feels a bit lazier than the final 3 we remember, and we’;re questioning if the s versions skew tighter. This 3 has a tendency to understeer in difficult corners, although the chunky winter tires may well include to that impact. Letting off the fuel brings every little thing back in line swiftly. The brakes have been also a tiny spongy in this distinct motor vehicle, with plenty of travel, which didn’;t give us significantly self-confidence.

The suspension—MacPherson fronts, twin-tube shocks, multilink rear—soaks up the large potholes, producing it great in excess of rough roads following a winter thaw. Of program, that cushiness prospects to a lot of physique roll for the duration of turns, and it could potentially be responsible some of that understeer. Road noise is kept to a minimum, although we detected some wind noise over 60 mph, and when you actually have your foot buried, some engine noise through the firewall.

Outward visibility is good from nearly any angle. The modest C pillars are easy to steer clear of when seeking for cross traffic. The power sunroof lets in a ton of light, and it was perfect for a awesome day with warm sun beating in.

Do I want it?

Right after we saw the new corporate face on the Mazda 6 sedan, we had been eager to see it on the company’;s volume vehicle. In that respect, it does not disappoint. Do note that the “zoom zoom” is sacrificed a bit in the title of fuel economic climate and comfort in this i trim degree. In the previous, even the base models felt like they hid a sporty edge. The steering employed to be entertaining and a bit higher strung. This most current 3 feels a lot more like a Corolla. Of program, as Mazda might point out, Toyota sells a zillion of individuals things.

As far as your financial institution account goes, our tester’;s large value is not completely representative of the line. The Mazda 3 loved ones ranges from $ 16,945 to $ 25,995 plus possibilities, which is virtually specifically the very same value span supplied by the Ford Concentrate and Honda Civic. As with individuals cars, you can get the Mazda 3 for close to $ 22k with virtually everything you’;d need to have over the lifetime of the automobile.

Both way, from a styling standpoint, the 3 is one particular of the best-looking automobiles in its class, and in spite of the smaller engine its not virtually as dull to drive as some of its competitors. I think we’;d even spring for that Soul red-metallic paint.

2014 Mazda3 i Grand Touring

Base Value: $ 24,590

As Tested Price: $ 25,085

Drivetrain: 2.-liter, 155-hp, 150 lb-ft DOHC I4 FWD 6-pace automatic

Curb Bodyweight: 2,848 lbs.

Fuel Economy (city/highway/mixed): thirty/41/34

Possibilities: Soul red-metallic paint ($ 300) Scuff plates/door sill trim plates ($ 125) Cargo mat ($ 70)

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