Track Tested: 2011 Mazda 2
Edmunds tests hundreds of vehicles a year. Cars, trucks, SUVs, we run them all, and the numbers always tell a story. With that in mind we present "Track Tested," a quick rundown of all the data we collect at the track, along with comments direct from the test-drivers. Enjoy.
Alongside its Ford-badged Fiesta brother, the Mazda 2 is entering the U.S. market to further expand the ever-growing subcompact segment. We tested Mazda's smallest offering and found that it provides plenty of the usual Mazda Zoom-Zoominess.
Problem is, we're not sure how much that will matter in this class. Subcompacts are measured more for their utility and value than for their performance. The Mazda 2 is available in two trim levels: Sport and Touring. Opting for the pricier Touring model like our test car gets you alloy wheels, cruise control and a six-speaker audio system among other niceties.
|2011 Mazda 2||2009 Honda Fit Sport With Nav||2011 Ford Fiesta SES|
|0-45 mph (sec.)||6.5||5.9||6.0|
|0-60 mph (sec.)||10.3||9.5||10|
|0-75 mph (sec.)||16.3||14.3||15.1|
|0-60 mph with
|1/4 mile time
|17.5 @ 77.9||16.9 @ 81.1||17.2 @ 80.4|
|Skid pad (g)||0.84||0.82||0.82|
|Slalom speed (mph)||63.9||64.4||62.2|
|As-tested weight (lbs)||2,279||2,511||2,557|
|Price as tested||$16,185||$18,820||$17,795|
Editor's Note: The above data was not gathered on the same day using the same driver, as is our protocol in full comparison tests.
Vehicle: 2011 Mazda 2 Touring
Driver: Chris Walton
Drive Type: Front-wheel drive
Transmission Type: Five-speed manual
Engine Type: 1.5-liter inline four-cylinder
Displacement (cc/cu-in): 1,498/91.4
Redline (rpm): 6,300 rpm
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 100 @ 6,000
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm): 98 @ 4,000
Brake Type (front): 10.2-inch ventilated discs, sliding calipers
Brake Type (rear): 8-inch drums
Steering System: Electric power-assisted steering
Suspension Type (front): Independent MacPherson struts, coil springs, twin-tube dampers
Suspension Type (rear): Semi-independent twist beam-axle, coil springs, monotube dampers
Tire Size (front): 185/55R15
Tire Size (rear): 185/55R15
Tire Model: Yokohama Avid S34F
Tire Type: All season
Wheel Size: 15-by-6 inches
Wheel Material (front/rear): Cast aluminum
As Tested Curb Weight (lb): 2,279
0 - 30 (sec): 3.2
0 - 45 (sec): 6.5
0 - 60 (sec): 10.3
0 - 75 (sec): 16.3
1/4 Mile (sec @ mph): 17.5 @ 77.9
0 - 60 with 1-ft Rollout (sec): 10.0
30 - 0 (ft): 33
60 - 0 (ft): 129
Slalom (mph): 63.9
Skid Pad Lateral Acceleration (g): 0.84
Db @ Idle: 40.6
Db @ Full Throttle: 78.8
Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 72.9
Acceleration Coments: While I'm happy the Mazda 2 allows you to shut off the traction control, there's little to be gained by doing so because there isn't enough torque to maintain wheelspin and the engine quickly bogs down. The TRAC-on run was not optimal, but a more representative/repeatable number if you let the traction control do its thing. Also discovered the very abrupt rev limiter is easy to hit with such a small and hard-to-read tachometer. Longish shift action, but well-defined gates and intuitive clutch uptake.
Braking Comments: Surprisingly long stopping distances. Hard to tell if this is due to tires or lack of brake capacity. Fade was not an issue, however, as the first and fourth stops were essentially the same. Pedal remained medium firm. Some wander and wiggle from the rear, though.
Handling Comments: Skid pad: Exceptional balance, especially for a FWD car. With ESC off, the car can be held in a perpetual tail-out slide. Slalom: We always wondered what this chassis would do with a defeated ESC and now we know. It's a lot of fun but only slightly faster between the cones. Can rotate car with throttle control, but smoothness and a tidy line are ultimately rewarded.