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Monday, February 03, 2014

2014 Mazda Mazda3





PRICE : For 2014 Mazda Mazda 3 $16,945


After being stuck in the styling doldrums for decades, the compact segment has finally started to produce some lookers over the last few years - witness the tasteful Kia Forte and the curvaceous Hyundai Elantra. Even as the competition steps up its game, however, the Mazda3 hatchback stands out with a look all its own...

Appearing more like a product of Modena than Hiroshima, the Mazda3 hatchback blends a long hood with sinewy surface details, narrowed headlights and Mazda's bold five-point grille. As with the larger Mazda6, its A-pillar touchdown point - where the base of the windshield meets the hood - is farther rearward than the norm, creating balanced, rear-wheel-drive-like proportions...

Things are more businesslike but still stylish inside, where upmarket materials and optional high-tech extras foster the feeling of a more expensive vehicle. Passenger room is ample up front, while rear seat space is decent but not enormous by class standards. There's plenty of real estate for cargo, however, with 20.2 cubic feet with the rear seats up and a sizable 47.1 cubes with them folded flat...

Reflecting the hatchback's driver-focused mission, the instrument cluster consists of a single analog gauge - a speedometer in base models in a tachometer in more overtly-sporty trims - flanked by a pair of small displays that provide supplemental information.
To help the driver to better keep his or her eyes on the road, the Mazda3 hatchback can be optioned with an Active Driving Display system. A variation of the head-up systems typically found in luxury vehicles, it projects vehicle speed, navigation directions and other important info onto a pop-up screen behind the instrument cluster...

The optional navigation system features a tablet-style seven-inch screen that looks slightly aftermarket, but the display does integrate useful features such as the ability to read out emails and text messages along with Facebook and Twitter updates through a Bluetooth-connected smartphone. The setup also allows the driver to send reply text messages using short fixed phrases, and compatibility with internet apps like Aha radio are part of the package as well. All navigation and infotainment functions are controlled an iDrive-like rotary knob positioned on the center console, though redundant buttons on the steering wheel and dashboard give users alternate means of controlling the electronics...


Along with expected options like leather upholstery and a premium Bose stereo, buyers can also spec upscale goodies like radar-based cruise control, a forward-collision warning and prevention system, and adaptive headlights...



EXTERIOR
















The 2014 Mazda3 is all-new from the ground up and has little in common to the model it replaces. Mazda chose to stretch its dimensions a little to allow for more interior room...

The model adopts the same design language we have seen in the Mazda6 sedan. Translated, this means that the new Mazda3 features a prominent black grille and more aggressive headlamps and a ready-to-pounce stance. That hideous Cheshire-cat grin from the second generation makes its exit to raucous cheers...

Along with the new five-point grille, the 2014 Mazda3 also features new sleekly slanted headlamps, wide-stance muscular fenders and a chiseled rear, featuring provoking taillights. A new feature to the Mazda3 is the addition of an active grille shutter mounted in front of the radiator that automatically opens and closes in accordance with driving conditions to improve aerodynamic performance...

Customers can choose between eight exterior colors, including two new ones: Titanium Flash Mica and Deep Crystal Blue Mica...SEE ALL PHOTOS



INTERIOR


















Drivers of all shapes and sizes should have no trouble getting comfortable, thanks to the wide range of adjustment to the seat and steering wheel, and the generous head- and shoulder-room...

The dashboard layout is also fairly logical, with clearly labelled buttons and dials for the air-con system, and easy-to-read instrument dials.

This uncluttered layout is largely down to a new infotainment system, which encompasses everything from the sat-nav to the stereo. The various functions can be accessed using the seven-inch colour touch-screen that sits on top of the dashboard, or via a BMW iDrive-style controller mounted between the front seats...

The latter method is much easier when you’re on the move, because you simply rotate a big dial to scroll through the on-screen menus and press the dial to make a selection. There are also some handy shortcut buttons to take you directly to specific functions, although it's a shame the menus themselves aren't a little more intuitive...

Perceived quality hasn’t always been Mazda’s strongest suit, but the 3 impresses on this score, too, with dense, soft-touch plastics covering most of the dashboard and solid-feeling buttons and switches throughout the cabin. In fact, only the centre console lets the side down, being a little lightweight and flimsy...

In the back, there’s plenty of headroom for a couple of six-footers, although the dipping roofline and rising windowline can make you feel a little hemmed in. Legroom in the rear is adequate, but the scooped seat-backs force rear passengers to keep their knees in one place. That space quickly runs out when the driver is over six foot...

Boot space in the hatchback is roughly on a par with a Seat Leon's (the saloon has slightly more room, but a narrower opening), and the rear seats fold almost completely flat and lie flush with the boot floor, making it easy for you to transport longer loads...

Entry-level SE models get 16-inch alloys, air-conditioning, Bluetooth, two USB sockets, steering wheel-mounted stereo controls and a tyre pressure-monitoring system...

Stepping up to SE-L gets you dual-zone climate control, privacy glass, automatic xenon headlights, rain-sensing wipers and front foglights, while range-topping Sport models also add keyless entry and electric leather seats...



SPECIFICATION


► Year:2014
► Make:Mazda
► Model:3
► Engine:inline-4
► Transmission:SKYACTIV-MT Six-Speed Manual
 Horsepower @ RPM:155 @ 6000
► MPG(Cty):29
► MPG(Hwy):40
► Torque @ RPM:150 @ 4000
► Displacement:2.0 L
► 0-60 time:7 sec. 
► Top Speed:130 mph 


NAVIGATION SYSTEM


With a variety of comfort and convenience features, the navigation system on the new Mazda 3 helps drivers reach their destinations safely, less stressfully and better informed.

Key features include:


► Safer, easier and more relaxed for the driver, since turn-by-turn directions are shown on the Active Driving Display as well as the centre stack display.
► Real-time information using RDS-TMC along with accumulated statistical traffic congestion data (stored with the maps) and the latest online traffic info to deliver the most accurate route calculations.
► Search destinations as well as filling stations, points of interest and weather forecasts:
                 • accesses current fuel prices online, also allowing drivers to choose filling stations                 as destinations
                   displays the latest online weather and forecasts for anywhere along the route
                   destination search also possible on the internet via smartphone, or set destinations                 from a mobile phone contact list
► Available throughout Europe with map data on the navigation system SD card, including:
                  three years of free updates (maps and directions) transfer via SD card
             • support for up to 18 audio and 26 text languages


COMFORT & QUALITY


There’s no way to sugar-coat it: The long hood and swept-back proportions that make the 2014 Mazda 3 so attractive—even a little sexy—on the outside end up limiting its space (and usefulness) inside...

Although if you’re mainly planning to use the Mazda 3’s front seats, that might not matter; for the most part this compact-car family offers pleasing interior appointments, and even the look and feel of a premium-brand vehicle in some respects...

The third-generation Mazda 3 rides on a wheelbase that's 2.4 inches longer, but the five-door hatchback model is 1.8 inches shorter overall; it’s also about 1.6 inches wider than the previous model. While Mazda touts increased front and rear shoulder room, as well as better rear knee room, the net effect is that the cabin feels a bit smaller than most other cars in this class, especially in back...

The front seats are very comfortable and supportive, with lower cushions that are long enough for taller drivers; and the nice, contrasting perforated-leather upholstery in our Grand Touring felt luxury-caliber. Mazda has enlarged the cushion of the driver's seat and completely redesigned its front seat backs, to provide a more natural sitting position and increase lateral support...

In back, two six-footers will be able to get comfortable enough, provided those in front aren’t also tall. We’d also advise against the moonroof, because it brings a very odd, scooped-out headliner that will leave taller passengers feeling like the roof is bowing around them. Rear occupants sit almost two inches higher than in the old car, but the way the rising beltline limits window space still makes it one of the more claustrophobic small-car experiences—especially in the hatchback...

The Mazda 3 feels premium from the front seats forward, with materials that are major step forward for Mazda—even in some cases better than what’s offered in the new Mazda 6. But there are some disappointments as well; for instance, the interior surface alongside the front doors is soft touch, but alongside the rear doors it's a hard surface that mostly mimics the look but has a slightly different sheen and is just hard plastic (Mazda isn’t the only offender; it’s also done by Honda in the Civic, for instance). The headliner itself is another area of disheartening cheapness; in both top-of-the-line Grand Touring we spent time with, it felt like flimsy cardboard covered by a felt-like material, with the entire section a bit loose over the moonroof mechanism...

In theory, the Mazda 3 is a step ahead in refinement over the old car. The company says that it’s added noise-absorbing material behind the dash, under the floor mats, and elsewhere. While we didn’t hear a bit of road noise, and engine noise is in the background most of the time, we think that there’s a bit too much road noise whenever the surface is coarse or imperfect...

As for the ride, by current compact-car standards, it’s a bit busy (it would have been a bit ahead of the class norm a few model years ago, but loads of ride and refinement attention have transformed many on-a-budget offerings). You might call it ideal, but only if you've driven on smooth-surfaced Southern California roads. We still haven’t driven lower-level ‘i’ models with less aggressive wheels and tires, and we’ll update this impression when we have...



AUDIO SYSTEM


Developed together with BOSE® especially for the new Mazda 3, the new 9-speaker BOSE® premium sound system features the latest in playback technology and, of course, plenty of power. Uncompromising like the Mazda 3's SKYACTIV Technology, the system comes with the most advanced audio features ever, yet weighs 20 per cent less and is more energy efficient than its predecessor. For example, since the amplifier generates less heat, there is no need for large metal cooling fins. So it's lighter and smaller, but with no trade-off in performance...

The audio system features Centerpoint 2 digital signal processing, which analyses the frequency of the sound source to deliver a rich virtual multi-channel surround experience, even from MP3 and other compressed files or the radio and audio content accessible via the newly introduced mobile connectivity system. The Mazda 3 marks the debut for Centerpoint® 2 in the C segment. AudioPilot 2 noise compensation technology, meanwhile, compensates for the effects of sounds from road surfaces, changing speeds, and even an open window. It uses a cabin microphone to monitor ambient noise, automatically adjusting the music signal accordingly - and letting the driver focus on the road...


DESIGN


Like the Mazda CX-5 SUV and mid-size 6, the new 3 uses Mazda's Kodo design philosophy from nose to tail.  The sedan and hatch are identical from the B-pillar forward and ride on the same 60mm longer 2700mm wheelbase, but the sedan scores a 120mm longer rear overhang. Both body styles are 15mm lower at 1455mm, and 40mm wider at 1795mm... 

The result of the sedan's extra length is a 408L cargo area, some 100L bigger than the hatch, but 22L and 32L smaller than the previous versions respectively, and both continue to use a spacesaver spare wheel. Increased use of high-strength steel in the new 3's all-new chassis has resulted in a marginal weight reduction, and torsional strength has increased by 30 per cent for hatch models, and 28 per cent for sedans...

Interior design echoes the CX-5 and 6 models with similar materials and shapes used throughout, but the multimedia display that comes standard on all bar Neo models is relocated to a pod-like position and grows to 7-inches from the CX-5 and 6's 5.8-inch double-DIN unit...


CHASSIS & BODY


Always a blast to drive, the all-new Mazda 3's nimble handling and faithful linear responsiveness has evolved to a previously unseen degree of sophistication. The bond with the Mazda 3 strengthens with each journey, and you may actually find yourself becoming a better driver. You'll certainly want to keep practising...

First introduced on the Mazda CX-5 and the new Mazda 6 - each "models" of driving joy in their respective classes - the lightweight SKYACTIV-Chassis and SKYACTIV-Body combine high-performance behaviour with superb aerodynamics, safety and NVH. These qualities are even more pronounced on the lighter Mazda 3, made-to-order for SKYACTIV with its compact C-segment proportions....

Mazda tuned the new Mazda 3's SKYACTIV-Chassis to respond more faithfully than ever to driver intentions. Take cornering as an example. The driver experiences something like absolute control, with the tires gripping the road as the car's neutral steering guides it accurately through the curve. There's no sign of the understeer common to front-wheel drives, with a smooth and desirably predictable pitch and roll as the load shifts from one side of the car to another. The harmonious linear response to and feedback from lateral and longitudinal g-forces means there is rarely the need to correct the steering. And no overreaction from the car, either, when braking into a curve, turning through it or accelerating out of it. The driver knows exactly what to do, and it's quite a fulfilling feeling...


BRAKES



Smart Brake Support (SBS) :

An autonomous emergency braking system, SBS works hand-in-hand with FOW to monitor vehicles up to 140m ahead. Should FOW issue a warning, SBS first pre-fills the brakes and then applies them with a force corresponding to the level of danger. The pre-fill is cancelled if the driver responds to mitigate the risk. SBS, which like FOW works at 15-200 km/h, thus helps prevent or at least reduce the severity of a rear impact, even at high speeds...

Smart City Brake Support (SCBS) :

Designed primarily for urban driving, SBCS is Mazda's low-speed emergency braking system. It utilises a near-infrared sensor to monitor preceding vehicles travelling at 4-30km/h and up to 6m away. Like SBS, SCBS pre-fills the brakes if there is an increased accident risk, applying them when necessary. The two systems complement each other perfectly, covering the 4-200km/h speed range, and should normally prevent collisions entirely on dry roads at 30 km/h or less...

Vehicles with autonomous emergency braking systems have up to 27 per cent fewer accidents than those without them, according to Euro NCAP, considerably reducing injuries. Euro NCAP will therefore add assessments of these systems to their vehicle safety ratings in 2014. So, unlike 79 per cent of models available in Europe, the new Mazda 3 - like the Mazda 6 and Mazda CX-5 - is already equipped for tomorrow..


SKYACTIV'S LIMIT




Mazda fans might recognize the 2.0-liter Skyactiv engine, the powerplant in all 3i models. In the previous 3, the Skyactiv 2.0-liter was fitted with a fairly conventional exhaust manifold designed to fit into the old architecture’s smaller engine compartment. But the 2.0-liter was designed to have a bulkier, larger exhaust manifold, which now fits in the new car. Why should you care? Because it delivers more midrange torque...

 At the 4000-rpm torque peak, the engine is up only 2 lb-ft over last year’s , but it delivers 148 lb-ft at 3000 rpm, as much as the old version did at its 4100-rpm peak. Coupled with the six-speed automatic, the 2.0-liter is expected to return EPA numbers of 30 mpg city and 41 highway in the sedan and 30/40 in the hatchback. Manual versions achieve the same highway numbers but lose 1 mpg in the city cycle...

Acceleration isn’t exactly strong in the base 3 i, but the 155-hp engine has enough muscle to pull itself to freeway speeds without eliciting any worry from the driver. Engine noise is kept distant, and the note doesn’t really change as the revs increase. There’s no waiting for the power to arrive, but rather a smooth, steady stream of pull...

Performance junkies will likely gravitate toward the more powerful 184-hp, 2.5-liter Skyactiv engine offered in the 3. Opting for the 2.5-liter brings quicker acceleration without much of a fuel-economy penalty. What the larger engine will cost is still up in the air; the upcharge to fit a (non-Skyactiv) 2.5 in the outgoing model was $1550...


POWERTRAIN & HANDLING


The Mazda3 hatchback was designed around Mazda's SKYACTIV engineering philosophy, which seeks to improve performance and efficiency - without adding significant cost - by optimizing existing technologies to decrease weight and improve aerodynamics.
As a result, the car knifes through the air with a drag coefficient as low as 0.255 Cd for certain models. Despite higher levels of safety and convenience equipment, curb weight is also down slightly compared to the previous model...

Entry-level 3i models are powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder that produces 155 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 150 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm, while the better-equipped 3s gets a more spirited 2.5-liter four with 184 horsepower at 5,700 rpm and 185 lb-ft of torque at 3,250 rpm.
A buttery-smooth six-speed manual is standard on the 3i - it will be offered on the 3s after launch - while a novel six-speed automatic is optional on the 3i and standard on the 3s. Uniquely, the auto utilizes a torque converter for smooth launches and low-speed maneuvers along with a multi-plate clutch for speedy shifts at higher velocities while also providing perfectly rev-matched downshifts...

No matter what engine or transmission it's equipped with, the Mazda3 is a highly efficient hatchback. The 3i is rated at 30/40 city/highway mpg with the automatic, while the manual model does a single mpg worse in the city. Contrary to what one might expect given its larger displacement and extra power, the 3s nearly matches the 3i with a 28/37 mpg rating...

Even better mileage can be achieved by opting for Mazda's i-ELOOP technology, which uses a capacitor to gather electricity generated during deceleration and send it off to power all of the electrical systems. Available on 3s models only, it increases economy to 29/39 mpg.
With sporty suspension tuning and precise, informative steering, the Mazda3 hatchback is one of the best-handling rides in its competitive set. It also delivers an accommodating ride over potholed, maintenance-neglected roads...


PERFORMANCE


The last-generation Mazda 3 was one of the best-performing compact cars—excluding the company of ‘tuned’ special-performance models like the Mazdaspeed3, Ford Focus ST, and VW GTI, of course. In most respects, the new Mazda 3 maintains that performance edge; but it’s no great leap...

In powertrain performance, the redesigned 2014 Mazda 3 remains at the head of the class. Whether you get the 2.0-liter in-line four or the 2.5-liter version, and whether you opt for the six-speed automatic or the six-speed manual gearbox, these combinations all bring satisfying performance and better responsiveness than most compact cars...

The reason why these powertrains work so well? Through its so-called Skyactiv initiative, Mazda has gone and engineered, from scratch, a new engine (here in two different sizes), plus an all-new six-speed automatic transmission and a new six-speed manual gearbox. Along with the latest versions of the Mazda 6 mid-size sedan and CX-5 compact crossover, these models are all built on a purpose-built platform, to accommodate that new platform, and steering and suspension systems have been redesigned at the same time, all to preserve weight and improve fuel-efficiency, without sacrificing driving enjoyment...

The manual gearbox snicks neatly and precisely between gears, and the clutch takes up easily and neatly; and in automatic versions the transmission shifts quickly between gears, almost with the decisiveness of a dual-clutch system, but with more smoothness when you need it. The only odd thing we noticed in our test drive, when we encountered some low-speed hairpin corners, was how widely spaced first and second gear are. 3s versions get steering-wheel paddle-shifters...

Between 2.0-liter ‘i’ and 2.5-liter ‘s’ models, there’s probably not as much of a difference as you might think. The ‘i’ should be plenty quick for most needs, and it’ll save you a mile per gallon or two overall. Both of these engines have the same personality and are very smooth all the way up the rev range. The 2.5-liter has one big advantage, though: It makes its peak 184 pound-feet of torque at 3,250 rpm, while the 2.0-liter makes 148 lb-ft at 4,000; it feels noticeably stronger at the lower end of the rev range, which should make it an even better companion with the automatic transmission...

One note: Over two different test cars with the 2.5-liter engine, we encountered a noticeably lumpy low idle when the engine was fully hot...

In general drivability, the Mazda 3 also excels. The powertrain is never caught flat-footed, and the accelerator pedal is confident and linear, not just tuned for jumpy response on the test drive. The steering feels precise; there’s never excess body motion; and the four-wheel disc brakes (even on the base SV) are confidence-inspiring. Transmissions (except for the odd 1-2 gap we noticed in our automatic test car) offer a nice set of ratios that seem well-suited to the engine, including a very tall sixth gear that had the engine in our Grand Touring turning at an indicated 2,050 rpm at 70 mph...

And on the other hand, when you want to drive quickly, you can hit the Sport button for a more aggressive throttle setting and a delayed shifts for the automatic transmission. With it clicked, we also noticed that the stability control has a remarkably loose rein on overzealous driving styles; it’ll even permit a little bit of sliding—all in the name of fun, right?..

One feature that's unusual in a new car is the bottom-hinged "organ-style" accelerator pedal, which Mazda says is more comfortable for drivers. We agree...

Mazda put lots of engineering into an electrohydraulic power steering system for that last-generation car, and nailed it, with the best steering, by a long shot, of any small car. That last-generation car is a tough act to follow, and we simply don’t think the new car’s electric power steering system is as good. It’s one of the better systems in this class, and we really like the strong sense of center at lower speeds, out of corners, but it doesn’t do well with oddly crowned roads, or track all that well at highway speeds—requiring more small adjustments than we would have liked...

In fuel efficiency, the Mazda 3 does make a significant leap. Although the 2.0-liter Skyactiv engine had been offered for the past couple of model years in some models of the 3, the 2014 models all have the new and far more efficient engine lineup. As we outline in our Green and Fuel Economy section, that means an EPA rating of more than 30 mpg Combined for the entire lineup--and mileage gains on the order of 30 percent for some of the lineup...


MAZDA RADAR CRUISE CONTROL (MRCC)


Another related system, MRCC also uses microwave radar to keep an eye on preceding vehicles. It automatically adjusts the throttle and brake pressure to maintain a safe trailing distance, which is preset by the driver. First introduced on the Mazda 6, the system is now available for the new Mazda 3...

MRCC functions at 30-200km/h, enabling the system to adapt flexibly to changing traffic conditions. If a high-speed motorway becomes congested, for example, MRCC automatically adjusts to significantly shortened trailing distances. And it remains in operation when, say, exiting the motorway, decelerating on a curved off-ramp and then following a vehicle accelerating down the next road, only shutting off if the car's speed falls below 20km/h...

The radar sensor accurately detects vehicles at up to 140m under any conditions - at night, in pouring rain or blinding sunlight. It therefore takes a huge load off the driver's shoulders, relieving stress and preventing fatigue - especially on long-distance journeys...


ENGINE




For the North American market, customers get to choose between two engines: a SKYACTIV-G 2.0-liter gasoline engine and a new SKYACTIV-G 2.5-liter gasoline engine...

The 2.0-liter engine delivers a total of 155 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 150 pound-feet of torque at 4,000 rpm, while the 2.5-liter version produces a total of 184 horsepower at 5,700 rpm and 185 pound-feet of torque at 3,250 rpm...

The two engines mat to a standard SKYACTIV-MT six-speed manual transmission, while a SKYACTIV-Drive six-speed automatic transmissions is offered as an alternative. Mazda also offers a unique i-ELOOP brake energy regeneration system, which employs a capacitor to store electricity generated when the vehicle decelerates. The Mazda3 then uses this stored power to help reduce fuel consumption...

With the 2.0-liter engine, the EPA rated the Mazda3 Hatchback at 29 mpg city, 40 mpg highway and 33 mpg combined with the manual transmission, and 30 mpg city, 40 mpg highway and 33 mpg combined with the automatic transmission. With the 2.5-liter powerplant, the EPA rated the Mazda3 hatchback 28 mpg city and 37 mpg highway. With i-ELOOP, the 2.5-liter engine’s ratings jump to 29 mpg city and 39 mpg highway...


DRIVETRAIN


Anyone who has spent time in the CX-5 and 6 will not be surprised by the new 3. It borrows from the same pool of drivetrains, rides on a scaled-down Skyactiv platform, and its aesthetic relationship inside and out with its larger siblings could not be more obvious.
This is not at all a bad thing though, and the proven formula translates well to the new small hatch and sedan. Both engines remain smooth and quiet when tootling about, and emit a satisfying rasp when asked to perform...

The 2.0-litre makes more than enough grunt to deal with hills and overtaking, and the six-speed auto is well up the task of making the most of it. The more powerful 2.5-litre is more capable again, and will leave plenty performance in reserve during most urban situations, but comfortably carries over the previous model's warm hatch status when asked to perform...

The six-speed auto does tend to hold gears in the name of efficiency, but will happily respond to a gentle instructive stab if asked. Most buyers will simply be sold on its fuel-saving ability however. The six-speed manual is light in its weighting, with a well-defined gate and simple clutch actuation. If you still prefer a manual, the new 3 will not disappoint.  
There is still a degree of road noise at high speed – a traditional 3 compromise – but it is a significant improvement over the previous model. Dynamically, the new 3 feels more capable than ever, with flat cornering behaviour that only gently edges toward understeer at the limit. The electrically assisted steering loads up impressively as cornering demands increase, and reacts swiftly to small and sudden inputs...
As you'd expect, the 16-inch wheeled models deliver a more comfortable ride, but the lower profile 18s on SP25 models were hardly jarring on test. Overall, the new 3's refinement makes for a slightly less exciting experience than the previous model, but few will disagree with its newfound composure...


SAFETY


The all-new Mazda3 has an impressive list of standard features, plus some active-safety features that go beyond what's usually on offer in an affordable compact car; while that should place it in high regard, we're still waiting for a full set of crash-test ratings for this all-new model...

The 2014 Mazda 3 has been built on a different platform than the previous version—one that's mostly shared with the CX-5 crossover and the Mazda 6 mid-size sedan...

The 3 has been tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), and it's earned excellent 'good' results in all categories--including the new small overlap frontal test. And that's given it the new IIHS Top Safety Pick+ distinction for 2014...

All Touring and Grand Touring models get Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross Traffic Alert; 'i' Grand Touring (and 'i' Touring if optioned) as well as all 's' models get a rearview camera as part of their Mazda Connect system...

Other available active-safety features in the 3 include Smart City Brake Support, which will use laser sensors to help anticipate a collision and activate emergency braking automatically (under 19 mph); Forward Obstruction Warning, which warns the driver of hazards ahead (between 9 and 92 mph); a Lane Departure Warning System, which warns the driver when they're straying from lane markings; and Blind Spot Monitoring, which beeps if you've clicked the turn signal in one direction and a car is currently in that space. A High Beam Control system and Adaptive Front Lighting are also available....

With that optional equipment, the IIHS gives the Mazda 3 its 'advanced' front crash protection rating...

Outward visibility is surprisingly obscured in the Mazda 3, and even anticipating the upwardly curved beltline, it’s worse from inside than the exterior suggests. That’s in part because door pillars are thick, and rear hatchbacks with their blacked-out glass lead you to believe there’s window space where there’s not....


FUEL ECONOMY



The outgoing Mazda3 is offered with a choice between three engines, only one of them equipped with the company's SkyActiv suite of fuel-saving technologies...

The redesigned 2014 Mazda3 can be equipped with a choice between two 4-cylinder engines, each showcasing SkyActiv technology. The 2-liter engine is essentially carried over from 2013, but the new 2.5-liter SkyActiv 4-cylinder engine is more powerful and more fuel efficient than the engine it replaces....

For the purposes of this comparison, we will focus on the 2-liter SkyActiv 4-cylinder engine that carries over for 2014. As this article is written, it is the only engine with official fuel economy ratings for both model years. Additionally, we limit comparison to the Mazda3 5-door model because that's the only version of the new car that the Environmental Protection Agency has officially rated...

In the 2013 model, the 2-liter SkyActiv engine generates 155 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque, and drives the car's front wheels through a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 6-speed automatic transmission with a manual shift mode. For 2014, the hp rating and the transmission choices remain the same, but torque rises to 150 lb-ft...

In addition to a barely perceptible increase in torque output, the new Mazda3 is rated to return 33 miles per gallon in combined driving regardless of transmission choice. This same engine installed in the 2013 Mazda3 returns 31 mpg in combined driving with a manual gearbox and 32 mpg with the automatic...


VIDEO ( 2014 MAZDA MAZDA 3 )


Video by : TestDriveNow Channel

SEE ALL PHOTOS


By : Automotive News & Super Modified Sports Cars


= Shahen Tharammal



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