This is easily the best car that I've ever owned. I switched to the 3 from a 2002 Honda Accord EX-V6 Coupe and never looked back. The mileage is great, it has lots of passenger room, and the hatchback plus fold down seats give tons of room. Mazda could charge $10k more and I would have still bought it.
Passenger room and handling are great. The 2.3L 's' engine with the 5 speed manual gives great performance and good mileage (I get about 30MPG, about 50/50 city/highway driving). The manual is easy to shift though can get tiring in stop and go traffic
The console could use some ergonomic improvements and the materials used for the dash need to be changed -- they mark too easily but clean up fairly well.
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