2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED MAZDA3 New Grand Touring 4dr Hatchback (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
Like every other reviewer here, I think this car is great. It just seems like you get more for your money here than in most cars. The power and handling are suburb, the interior is brilliantly designed (love that HUGE glove box!) and seems to be of higher quality than most sub 35k cars I've seen. The car is just all around fun to drive, and with the hatch and the fact that it makes its power from the turbo charger, it's practical too! My only real complaint is the transmission. The clutch is just a touch to delicate and takes some getting used to. 1st gear is only useful for getting the car moving and the shifting is "notchy". I've missed gears.
*Gobs* of mid-range torque and power, road hugging suspension, comfortable leather/alacantre seats, 6cd changer, automatic wipers, LED lights, the fact that I can drive a powerful and well handling sports car every day.
Kind of moot because 09 is likely the last year for the speed version of the 3, but I would love to see a sunroof, heated seats and bluetooth available. I had to add an aftermarket solution for bluetooth integration via the aux port since cell phones and driving a stick don't mix well