Date Driven: 8/10/2010 (2011 Touring manual)
With only 100 hp, the Mazda 2 is among the slowest cars sold in the U.S. today. Its 10.3-second 0-60-mph time will be noticeable when entering a freeway.
Reasonable skid pad and slalom numbers in combination with decent control feel and responses yield an average performance here. The 2's electric-assist power steering is better than most competitors when it comes to feel.
Ride comfort is largely acceptable. However, on rough surfaces we found the 2 lacked adequate wheel travel which sometimes resulted in bottoming.
Minimal sound insulation and a loud engine combined with noticable wind noise make the 2's cabin a fairly loud environment.
Mazda makes only one truly easy-to-fault ergonomic mistake with the 2. Its rear-seat headrests intrude significantly into valuable seatback space when in their lowest position. Otherwise, this is an average performance.
The 2 offers very good sightlines in all directions.
Seat Access & Space
Although it offers adequate space for a small car, the 2 is still a small car. Large adults can squeeze into the backseat for short trips but fit comfortably up front. Long front seat tracks provide ample legroom for large drivers.
Cargo & Storage
The 2 trails some competitors in cargo space and is, overall, still a small car with a small cargo area. It also lacks the cargo area flexibility of its primary competition.
Seams and panels on the 2 align well but materials are only average for the segment.