2015 Mazda 6 Sedan Review & Ratings | Edmunds
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2015 Mazda 6 Sedan Review

2015 Mazda 6 Sedan
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Summary

Edmunds Summary Review of the 2015 Mazda 6 i Touring Sedan

  • With its roomy cabin, agile handling and impressive fuel economy, the 2015 Mazda 6 is a fine choice for a midsize sedan, especially if you want one with some personality.

  • Pros

    Smooth and responsive powertrain; quick acceleration; impressive fuel economy; sporty handling; well-built interior with top-quality materials; stylish looks.

  • Cons

    Touchscreen electronics interface is less advanced and harder to use than competitors' systems; ride quality may be too firm for some.

  • What's New for 2015

    For 2015, all Mazda 6 sedans come with a full set of one-touch up/down power windows, and keyless entry and ignition is now standard on the Touring trim level. In addition, a new option package for the Touring combines an upgraded sound system, sunroof and satellite radio.

Review

Shoppers looking for midsize sedans are spoiled for choice these days. Many of the cars in this class offer appealing combinations of fuel economy, interior space and upscale amenities. The 2015 Mazda 6 checks all these boxes while also bringing in unexpected benefits like sleek styling and a sporty driving feel. These aren't exactly critical elements in a family car, but they help the Mazda 6 stand out from the crowd.

Although we're fond of the 2015 Mazda 6's distinct design, this sedan actually gets more impressive when you look beyond its sheet metal. Its fuel economy, for example, is outstanding for this class. When equipped with the i-Eloop system on the Grand Touring trim, it earns an EPA-estimated 32 mpg in combined driving, which is tops among non-hybrid midsize sedans with a gasoline engine. Without i-Eloop, the Mazda rates 30 mpg combined, which is still a great number for a family car. Furthermore, the 6 is quicker than most other midsize sedans that we've tested with a base four-cylinder engine, and most buyers will find its acceleration more than adequate in cutthroat urban traffic. On top of that, Mazda's sedan has precise steering and a firmly tuned suspension that make it fun to hustle along on the occasional back road or highway on-ramp.

One of the few knocks against the 2015 Mazda 6 is that its sportier suspension makes bumps and potholes a bit more noticeable, especially on cars with the 19-inch wheels. If you're used to a softer ride, you might find the 6 too stiff in these situations. And, while the Mazda 6 has one of the best base-four-cylinder engines around, there's no option to upgrade to a more powerful turbocharged four-cylinder or a V6 engine. Inside, the touchscreen electronics interface has a lower-resolution display and is generally harder to use than competitors' systems.

Although our grievances with the 2015 Mazda 6 are minor, there are plenty of alternatives to consider in this class. The 2015 Honda Accord and 2015 Nissan Altima also have very high fuel economy ratings (not to mention optional V6 engines), and you might find them a bit more comfortable in everyday driving. The 2015 Ford Fusion and 2015 Kia Optima are also worth a look if sharp styling and creature comforts are high on your priority list, plus they offer punchy turbocharged engines. Ultimately, you'll do well with any of these family cars, but if you're looking for a midsize sedan that's a bit more entertaining than most, we'd definitely suggest a test-drive of the 2015 Mazda 6, which also earns a recommended spot in our 2015 Sedan Buying Guide.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2015 Mazda 6 is a five-passenger midsize sedan offered in three trim levels: Sport, Touring and Grand Touring.

Standard features on the base manual-transmission Sport include 17-inch alloy wheels, cloth upholstery, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, air-conditioning, cruise control, full power accessories, a 60/40-split rear seat, a 3.5-inch multi-information display and a six-speaker sound system with a USB/iPod interface and an auxiliary audio jack. If equipped with the optional automatic transmission, the Sport also includes Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, a 5.8-inch touchscreen, a rearview camera and audio upgrades (voice commands, HD radio, Pandora, text message display function and automatic emergency notification).

Stepping up to the Touring trim adds 19-inch alloy wheels, keyless ignition and entry, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alerts, premium vinyl (leatherette) upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control, a sliding console armrest and a six-way power driver seat. For Touring models with an automatic transmission, there's an option package that adds a sunroof, an upgraded 11-speaker Bose audio system and satellite radio. This package is required if you want to equip the Touring Technology package, which adds automatic headlights, rain-sensing wipers, auto-dimming rearview and driver-side mirrors, heated side mirrors, a navigation system and the Smart City frontal collision mitigation system.

The Grand Touring includes all of the above as standard, as well as different 19-inch wheels, a rear spoiler, adaptive bi-xenon headlights, LED running lights, foglights, leather upholstery, an eight-way power driver seat (with power lumbar support), a four-way power passenger seat, driver memory functions and heated front seats.

Optional for the Grand Touring is the GT Technology package, which includes adaptive cruise control, a forward collision warning system, a lane-departure warning system, automatic high-beam control and an energy capture system called i-Eloop ("intelligent energy loop") that improves mpg by storing energy captured during deceleration to a capacitor, which can then power air-conditioning, lighting and accessories for about a minute while the stop-start system shuts the engine down at a stoplight.

Powertrains and Performance

The front-wheel-drive 2015 Mazda 6 is powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 184 horsepower and 185 pound-feet of torque. Sport and Touring trims can be matched to either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission (with shift paddles on the steering wheel), while the Grand Touring comes only with the automatic.

In Edmunds testing, an automatic-equipped Mazda 6 sprinted to 60 mph in 7.6 seconds, which is a quick time for a midsize sedan with a base four-cylinder engine. The EPA estimates fuel economy at 30 mpg combined (26 city/38 highway) for the automatic-transmission car and 29 mpg combined (25/37) with the manual. With the Grand Touring's optional i-Eloop feature, fuel economy rises to an impressive 32 mpg combined (28/40).

Safety

Standard safety features for the Mazda 6 include antilock disc brakes, traction and stability control, front-seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and active front head restraints. Standard on all trims other than the manual-transmission Sport is a rearview camera, while rear parking sensors are optional across the board. The Touring and Grand Touring trims additionally include blind-spot and rear cross-traffic monitoring.

Optional on the Touring and standard on the Grand Touring is Mazda's Smart City Brake Support, which is a frontal collision mitigation system that uses an infrared laser sensor at the top of the windshield to detect an imminent collision. It can automatically brake the car to a stop at low speeds if the driver doesn't react. The GT Technology package for the Grand Touring also bundles a forward collision-warning system (which uses radar to detect your closing distance on vehicles ahead and then provides visual and audible alerts) with a lane-departure warning system.

In Edmunds brake testing, a 6i Grand Touring came to a stop from 60 mph in 128 feet, which is a bit longer than average for a midsize sedan.

In government crash tests, the 2015 Mazda 6 earned the top overall rating of five stars, with four stars for total frontal impact crash protection and five stars for total side impact protection. The 6 also earned the highest possible rating of "Good" in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's (IIHS) moderate-overlap frontal-offset, side-impact and roof-strength tests. In the small-overlap frontal-offset test, it earned a second-best rating of "Acceptable." Its seat and head restraint design rated "Good" for whiplash protection in rear impacts.

Interior Design and Special Features

With plentiful rear legroom, the Mazda 6's rear passengers will feel as if they've been given access to a first-class cabin rather than coach. There's also generous headroom, even for those taller than 6 feet, though the sedan's sloping rear roof line makes the rear windows smaller, resulting in a more claustrophobic feel than you'd get in an Accord or a Camry. There's decent luggage space, as the efficiently shaped trunk offers 14.8 cubic feet of capacity.

In general, the 6's interior design is clean and functional. Polished aluminum trim accents the cabin, while the Grand Touring's leather upholstery features contrasting stitching. Materials quality and fit and finish are among the best in the class. Most controls are simple and user-friendly, but the touchscreen interface found in most models is a step behind the systems in most competitors. The screen and the touch buttons on the display are small, and we've found that it doesn't always get along with Apple products. Sedans with navigation use TomTom maps, and we've found them lacking in detail compared with rival systems' mapping software. On the upside, a multipurpose knob located south of the Mazda's shifter grants a welcome level of control redundancy.

Driving Impressions

One standout characteristic of the 2015 Mazda 6 is its powertrain. The sedan's 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine produces quick acceleration and is smooth and surprisingly hushed. And although many of today's automatic transmissions quickly upshift to the highest gear possible and are reluctant to downshift (both strategies are used to boost mpg numbers), the Mazda 6's automatic is responsive to gas pedal inputs and never feels flat-footed when you're initiating highway passing maneuvers. Furthermore, Mazda is one of the few automakers that still offers a six-speed manual gearbox, which is fast becoming an endangered species in the midsize class.

This same light-on-its-feet character carries through when the topic turns to handling. With its communicative, precise steering and sporty chassis tuning, the 2015 Mazda 6 feels sharp-witted and willing around corners, with stand-out dynamics for the class. The flip side, however, is that the 6 rides a bit more stiffly than competitors, especially with the 19-inch wheels. Like many Mazdas, the 6 is a car for practical-minded buyers with enthusiast leanings.

Reviews from owners of the 2015 Mazda 6 i Touring Sedan

Average Consumer Rating (See all 38 reviews) Write a Review


Two year update - burning oil!

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Mazda 6

I have enjoyed this car for almost two years. Still enjoy the comfortable quiet ride. I have been using 1-2 quarts of oil between regular oil changes (7,500 miles). Is this normal?



1 of 3 people found this review helpful

This is the best mid size sedan bang for buck

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Mazda 6

The main competition to this car is the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Ford Fusion, and Nissan Altima. In my opinion Mazda is better overall than all these cars. Mazda is by far the most sporty of all these cars. The engine is very responsive and it's fun to go wide open throttle all the time. Mazda has a kick down switch which downshifts when you got WOT for maximum acceleration. You can also turn traction control off for a slightly more responsive throttle. Engine revs up really fast and you feel the power quickly. The traditional transmission feels better than the CVTs on the Accord and Altima. You feel the gear shifts and can rev engine. Mazda's are also reliable. I have poked around the car a lot, and it is logically designed. Comes with skid pad for rust protection and aerodynamic efficiency. It's nice that you don't need to sacrifice fun driving for fuel efficiency because the Mazda 6 gets the best mpg of the bunch, while being the most sporty. Honda is good, but they are more expensive than Mazda. Honda is better than in terms of performance and reliability over Toyota and Nissan. So there isn't a reason to buy a Toyota or Nissan. And ford is just completely unreliable. They have had so many lemon cars from 2011 to 2014. I would not trust the reliability. Don't read just one review. Look up reliability statistics, performance specs, and many reviews. Looks at the prices in your location and decide for yourself. For most people, the Mazda 6 is the best option.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

The best car i've ever owned

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Mazda 6

We looked at several cars, Honda Accord, Toyota Camry, Hyundai Sonata, Nissan Altama, etc. It came down between the Honda Accord and the Mazda 6. We already have an Accord, which is also a really good vehicle, however I wanted something a little more sporty looking, which is why I chose the 6. Besides the amazing looks of this car, the interior and what you get for the price, just can't be beat. I'm averaging around 33mpg and that's half town driving and half highway. This car is just so much fun to drive, it handles so well and for a 4 cylinder the pick up is really good. I can't recommend the Mazda enough, very satisfied and they have me as a loyal customer.




Second 6

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Mazda 6

This is my second Mazda 6 - my first was a 2005 iSport that I drove for 267000 miles. I loved that car. However, when other reviewers talk about that the 4cyl engine is sluggish and slow on the take off, the 2015 is a VAST improvement over previous versions. I find my new 6 to be very responsive and quick compared to my old 6 (and a Toyota and Hyundia) . Plenty of "get up and go" for pulling out in traffic, passing and highway driving. It's much quieter and handles beautifully. It's still fun to drive. zoom zoom



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Great car, great reliability, fun to drive.

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Mazda 6

One of the best cars I've owned. Great styling in and out. Quality interior materials. Fantastic mileage, getting high 20's in the city and low 40's on the highway on regular gas. Great handling for a midsize car, plenty of power for highway passing. Only cons, somewhat stiff ride, 19 inch low riding tires are overkill and contribute to stiff ride. A little slow from a dead stop, but after all it is a four-cylinder. Some vibration noise from engine on acceleration but tolerable. No temperature gage, and no compass. I got the car loaded and love all the extras. Great safety with blind spot and rear back up signals. I love the tracking headlights for going through corners at night. I feel like I am driving a much more expensive car than what I paid for it. I look forward to driving it every day!



2 of 3 people found this review helpful

Best car i've owned so far!

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Mazda 6

One year of ownership and I'm still loving this car. Saves gas and looks great. Everyone at work still compliments the car and is surprised it's a Mazda. I have my 6 in Soul Red (Touring with Tech Package) and it's a beauty to look at night and especially in the day when the sun is shining on it. It has a custom metallic red look to it when viewing at different angles. Handling is tight, direct, and responds right away compared to a Honda or Toyota. I don't like it when the steering feels loose. Step on the gas all the way down and the transmission responds very quickly. Acceleration is not that fast like a v6 (compared to my 05 g35 coupe) but is good enough for me to get on the freeway. There's some wind noise when on the freeway but turning up the radio makes it less noticeable. Interior is very nice and looks better than some luxury cars. It is roomy and has lots of soft touch materials. Doesn't look cheap and plasticky like the competitors. The layout of the interior is just right. Not a lot of small buttons cluttering the interior. Everything is placed right where it should be. Radio is okay just wished it had a 7" touchscreen like the CX-5 but everything seems to work fine. Bose audio system is not that loud. Voice activated commands are a neat feature but I've never used it so can't really comment on it. Seats are very comfortable. I don't have any discomfort on my commute especially while sitting in a traffic jam. Hopefully Mazda will come out with a Speed6 or or turbocharged 4cylinder in the future. I know my next car will be a Mazda again but for now I'm keeping this car for a long time. Pros: blind spot monitoring handling 19" wheels rearview camera with rear cross traffic alert bluetooth mpg armrest extends Cons: Radio is too small wind noise Bose audio system instrument/gauge colors is white. Looks too plain. Wished it had some more colors to it similar to an Infiniti or Acura. hp (A few more hp and this car will be even more fun to drive)



SPONSORED CONTENT
Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2015 Mazda 6 Sedan in VA is:

$59.58 per month*
*Disclaimer

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