2006 Mazda MAZDASPEED MAZDA6 Sport 4dr Sport Sedan AWD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
I traded in a Mustang GT for a Black MS6 which is my first experience with an AWD vehicle. The MS6 gives all but the elite group (Audi S, BMW M, Mercedes AMG, etc.) a run for their money. The MS6 is great fun to drive, handles very well with only a hint of understeer. The brakes are fantastic; however, it needs more tire. What a great highway vehicle. In 6th gear it pulls like a champ with gobs of available acceleration. However, the car needs better torque delivery from a standstill. It feels like a 4 cylinder Honda up until 3500 RPM when it pulls like crazy. Clutch action is horrible, requiring very careful application. Gas mileage is very poor, even with careful use of the turbo.
Highway performance, excellent road manners, sharp styling. Nothing in this price can come close in comfort, performance and standard features.
Mazda needs to reproduce the excellent clutch/transmission from the Miata and drop it in the MS6. It engages too abruptly and takes some getting used to. Better tire choice that includes wider tire/wheel combination. 20 MPG in mixed driving from a 2.3 litre engine is embarrassing.