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A couple of additional comments to add to to the review... Suggested Improvement: rear switches for the power door locks. Also, the A/C default is on, which is OK. But it seems like I get 3-4 MPG improvement on the highway by turning it off (if it is not too hot). That is a pretty big number and, driven very gently using the cruise control, easily comes over 30-32 mpg at 70mph. Turn on the A/C and drive more aggressively, expect 25-28 mpg. Very interesting article on Inside Line about the final chassis tuning of the second-gen MS3 by the Mazda Development Team. A big performance improvement over the first gen car, despite the controversial looks. The first gen car (I also have a regular Mazda 3 - 2004 grand touring) seemed to have some higher quality features (like the glove box lock, sturdier load floor with storage underneath, a better rear storage compartment cover versus the current light but flimsy one, lumbar adjust on the seats) that were eliminated to provide the auto climate control or reduce cost. While an (two-door) Alfa 147GTA is a good performance comp as a full on torque steering hot hatch, certainly the Alfa has some full-on italian style - and an a engine note from heaven - that the Mazda can't match. Then again, we never could buy the Alfa here in the USA and it would not have been nearly as affordable (but I would have bought it).Report it
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