Mazda3 Sedan vs Competitors

 

Overview

Compact sedans are popular for a lot of good reasons. For starters, their affordability, stylishness, and exceptional fuel efficiency put them at the top of the list for buyers on a budget. But thanks to healthy competition in the segment along with advances in automotive technology, these so-called economy cars are nicely equipped, even at the base level. The 2019 Mazda3 is a prime example of why people still flock to this class of vehicle at a time when crossovers seem to be stealing the show. But as we said, this vehicle class is competitive, and the Mazda3 certainly has some well-qualified rivals. It must contend with the likes of the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, Hyundai Elantra, Kia Forte, and Subaru Impreza. So, let’s examine this competition in more detail.

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Safety

Modern safety technologies are crucial when it comes to limiting serious accidents, as well as the ones that merely inconvenience us, and this is why automakers been equipping their vehicles with sophisticated driver aids at an increasing rate. One example is the Mazda3’s Whiplash Reducing Headrests. Unlike the Civic and Elantra models, the Mazda3’s headrests are specially designed to make it less likely that the driver and front passenger will suffer neck injury in rear-end collisions. If a collision occurs from behind, these headrests will move forward to reduce head movement and lessen the extent of neck and spinal injuries.


Engine Power & Fuel Economy

The Mazda3’s 2.5-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine produces 186 horsepower and 186 pound-feet of torque, which helps it stand out in its class. In contrast, the Civic (158 hp and 138 lb.-ft. of torque), Corolla (132 hp and 128 lb.-ft. of torque), Elantra (147 hp and 132 pound-feet of torque), Forte (147 hp and 132 lb.-ft. of torque), and Impreza (152 hp and 145 lb.-ft. of torque) all fall behind with their base engines. There’s also an engine control system called Cylinder Deactivation on the Mazda’s Premium trim that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders at appropriate cruising speeds to improve fuel efficiency. The Civic, Corolla, Elantra, Forte, and Impreza all lack this system.


Premium Amenities

The Mazda3 is one of the most attractive and accommodating vehicles in its class, and so it carries a slightly higher price tag than the rest. With that said, if you’re looking for a quality and luxuriously appointed compact sedan, you will likely notice and appreciate what just a little extra spending can provide. For one thing, it’s the only car mentioned here that gets push-button ignition on the base model. And just one level up from the base, the Select trim (or package, as Mazda calls them) comes with a leather-wrapped steering wheel and simulated leather upholstery. These features don’t show up on the competing vehicles until higher up the trim sequence.

What’s more, the Premium version includes a 12-speaker Bose audio system, which is a more substantial sound system than you’ll get with any of the rivals. Even if you choose a base model Mazda3 you’ll get an eight-speaker audio system, whereas most of the others come with just four or six speakers. To top it off, the base Mazda3 is outfitted with an 8.8-inch central display, while the closest competing model’s base trim, the Kia Forte FE, gets an 8-inch screen.