The Marvelous Mazda3

We have all had those bumpy moments in life but I think you would agree that it is the little things that make those bumps along the way easier. The week I test drove the 2019 Mazda3 was one of those weeks for me. I was thankful that when things around me were chaotic, the Mazda3 acted as a smooth operator. It doesn’t matter if you choose the hatchback or the sedan, this five passenger vehicle will lift your spirits with its gutsy 2.5-liter four cylinder engine with 186 horsepower and 186 pounds-feet of torque.

The 2019 Mazda3 has four trim levels to choose from:  base, Select, Preferred, and Premium.

The 2019 Mazda3 has been updated and all-wheel drive is now optional. The car is enticing with its quality interior. It is both visually appealing and yet simplistic, with its soft touch materials and easy to reach controls.  Mazda3 beats out the competition with its extravagant panels that are generously stitched. Many amenities come standard in the Mazda3, an 8.8-inch infotainment screen and an eight-speaker sound system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, however if you want even more lavish features, step up your trim level and receive leather upholstery, heated seats, paddle shifters, 12-speaker Bose sound system, heads-up display LED headlights and 18-inch wheels. The best part of it all? These upscale features are offered at a non-upscale price. 

The infotainment system has a screen that is mounted and knobs are controlled with a center knob that makes the driver not have to reach so far. That being said, I much prefer a touchscreen over the knobs placed at the center of the console; to me, touchscreen is more user friendly.

Riding around in this sweet little sedan was pleasant. The stiff ride made for little body roll, but as mentioned, the Mazda3 does handle life’s bumps along the way rather gracefully.

The test drove the sedan and visibility was not an issue. The rear windows are small, just like they were in previous generations, but not enough to completely block your field of view. That being said, back seat passengers may have to duck just a bit entering and exiting the vehicle. Front seat passengers have more room. Back seat drivers will feel even more cramped if you recline your sit like the guy/girl on the airplane in front of you. Don’t be that guy or girl.

Storage in the Mazda3 is average, with door pockets, a small center console bin and another small cubby. The trunk is deep and perfect for those few extra items. Rear seat folds back for a 60/40 split.

The Mazda3 has an array of standard safety features, including forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, blind spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, automatic high beam control (a new fave of mine on dark country roads), and lane keeping assist. These features are not available on the base Mazda3.

It was nice to see fewer trips to the gas station the week I drove the Mazda3 sedan. I received 27 mpg/city and almost a consistent 36 mpg on the highway.

You can own a Mazda3 sedan for $21,000 for the base model. The hatchback starts at $23,600. The Premium trim begins at $28,900 for the hatchback.

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