The Mazda3, also known as the Mazda 3, is a four door compact car. The Mazda3 is available as both a sedan and hatchback.
The Mazda 3 was first built in 2003 as a replacement for the Mazda Protégé. The first Mazda 3 was built on the Mazda BK platform. The Mazda3 is mechanically related to the Ford Focus, one of its rivals, the Volvo C30, and Mazda 5.
The second generation of the Mazda 3 came out in 2010. The second generation of the Mazda 3 was built on the Mazda BL platform which was also shared with the Mazda 5, Ford Focus, and Volvo C30 and V50.
The third generation of the Mazda3 came out in 2013 for the 2014 model year. This version included the very efficient Skyactiv drive train and engine components.
There are both hatchback and sedan versions of the Mazda 3. The hatchback has more cargo space in the back. The Mazda 3 is smaller than the Mazda 6, the family size sedan by Mazda.
A six speed manual transmission is standard, but the six speed automatic transmission is an option. The Mazda3 has front wheel drive as the default, but all wheel drive is available.
The first trim level above the Mazda 3 base package is the iSport. That trim level includes an infotainment screen, HD radio, streaming services, blind spot monitoring, rearview camera Bluetooth connectivity, and cruise control. The mid-level trim line is the Touring trim level. The Touring trim level has fake leather seats and the more powerful radio. The Grand Touring version is the higher trim line of the Mazda 3. The Grand Touring has the more powerful engine, radar based cruise control, lane departure warning, and regenerative braking system.
The Mazda3 gets up to 40 miles per gallon on the highway, with a 2.5 liter 184 horsepower engine. The Mazda3 vehicles with the regenerative braking system hit the 40 mpg metric. The Mazda3 achieved around 29 miles per gallon in the city. The 2.0 liter 155 horsepower engine is standard, and that routinely gets fuel efficiency in the high thirties.
The Mazda 3 had high ratings in crash tests by the IIHS.
A number of Mazda3 and Mazda6 cars made in 2014 for the 2015 model year were recalled due to a possible engine stall. The solution was reprogramming the power control module with updated software. This recall only affected Mazda3 vehicles with 2.5 liter engines and regenerative braking.
A 2011 recall for the Mazda3 was put out for problems with the windshield wiper motors.
A 2010 recall was issued for the electric power assistance system for the steering. That recall affected Mazda3 vehicles made from 2007 to 2009.
The 2009 Mazda3 vehicles had a recall for the electronic stability control system.
The 2015 Mazda3 new car price started at around $17,000. The iSport trim line costs around $18,500 to start. The hatchback version of the 2015 Mazda3 costs around $20,000. The Grand Touring version of the Mazda3 started at $26,000 new in 2015.
Rivals to the Mazda3 include the Subaru Legacy, Volkswagen Golf, Dodge Dart, Hyundai Elantra, Volkswagen Jetta, Honda Civic, Kia Forte, Chevy Cruze, Nissan Sentra, Subaru Impreza, Toyota Corolla, and Ford Fusion.
The Mazda3 is known as the Mazda Axela in Japan.