2007 Mazda 3 Review
2007 Mazda 3 Review
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Edmunds' Expert Review
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- Athletic handling, refined engines, strong brakes, sharp styling, top-notch build and materials quality, hatchback utility.
- Top safety equipment either optional or on higher trims, tight rear legroom, so-so fuel economy with 2.3-liter engine.
The 2007 Mazda 3 sees a number of changes. Although these include a minor exterior refresh involving mainly the taillights, most are more functional. Now standard on all Mazda 3s are a tire-pressure monitor, an auxiliary input jack for the stereo, a rear-seat center armrest and an additional power point in the console. A stability control system becomes available on the Touring and Grand Touring trims.
Entertaining yet sophisticated in demeanor, the 2007 Mazda 3 doesn't look, feel or drive like an economy car. If you're shopping for a small, inexpensive sedan or hatchback, this car should be at the top of your list.
Calculate my fuel costs
Cost to DriveCost to drive estimates for the 2007 Mazda 3 i Sport 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M) and comparison vehicles are based on 15,000 miles per year (with a mix of 55% city and 45% highway driving) and energy estimates of $3.11 per gallon for regular unleaded in Virginia.
Monthly estimates based on costs in Virginia
$141/mo for 3 i Sport
3 i Sport
Avg. Compact Car
Long known as the purveyor of sporty economy cars, Mazda's latest, the 3, continues the company's tradition of making small cars that are fun to drive. Debuting in 2004 as a replacement for the Protégé compact sedan, the 3 offers a choice of two body styles: a four-door with a trunk or a four-door with a hatchback (labeled the "five-door" by Mazda).
The 2007 Mazda 3's strengths include a pair of peppy, refined engines. The base "i" trim level employs a 148-horsepower, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, while the sportier "s" models use a 2.3-liter four-cylinder that bumps the output to 156 hp while offering more torque (150 pound-feet versus 135 lb-ft) as well as balance shafts (which enhance smoothness). Both engines are equipped with variable valve timing to improve response and efficiency. The 3 also boasts superior handling and ride dynamics compared to most economy cars. Blessed with some chassis components from Mazda's 6 midsize sedan and spot-on tuning, the 3 handles like a bargain sport sedan. The only minor quibble is that the ride may be too firm for some.
To go along with its impressive hardware, the 3 offers stylish design inside and out, with the taut, chiseled body hinting at its athletic personality. This year, in addition to freshened front and rear fascias for all 3s, new taillights debut: The i trims get a clear-lens treatment while the Grand Touring sedan gets LED units. Inside, the 3 benefits from a number of new upscale features, such as a standard rear-seat center armrest and audio input jack (for MP3 players). Stability control is another new addition this year.
With some exciting new economy sedans debuting this year, such as Honda's Civic Si and Dodge's Caliber SRT-4, the 2007 Mazda 3 finds itself with some serious competition. That challenge has been answered with the Mazdaspeed version of the 3 that also debuts this year, priced in the low-to-mid-$20,000 range. For those on a tighter budget, however, the standard Mazda 3 remains a strong consideration for driving enthusiasts shopping the $15,000¬-$20,000 compact segment.
Performance & mpg
All i sedans use a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine rated at 148 hp and 135 lb-ft of torque, while s models use a 2.3-liter four-cylinder rated at 156 hp and 150 lb-ft. Both engines come standard with a five-speed manual transmission. A four-speed automatic transmission with an automanual mode is optional on i models, while s models upgrade to a five-speed automatic. In our test of a 3 Grand Touring sedan with the 2.3-liter engine and automatic transmission, the Mazda did the 0-60-mph sprint in 8.6 seconds. EPA fuel mileage estimates for that model are 25 mpg city/31 mpg highway.
Standard on all 3s are four-wheel disc brakes, but one must typically go to upper trims or pay extra to get the latest safety features. Antilock brakes are optional on the i trims and standard for everything else. Stability control, front-seat side-impact airbags and full-length side curtain airbags are available only on the Touring and Grand Touring. A tire-pressure monitor is standard, but only on the Grand Touring. In NHTSA frontal-impact crash tests, the Mazda 3 scored four stars (out of five) and received three stars in that agency's side-impact test. In IIHS testing, the 3 received a "Good" rating (the highest out of four) in frontal-impact tests but got a "Poor" rating (the lowest) in that agency's side-impact test. It should be noted that both of those side-impact tests involved a 3 without the side airbags.
Thanks to its performance-oriented chassis tuning, the Mazda 3 rewards the driving enthusiast with quick and communicative steering, a lack of discernible body roll and lots of grip on twisty blacktop. At the same time, the highway ride is smooth enough to please most commuters; however, those who prefer softly sprung compacts like the Corolla might think it too firm. All told, the Mazda 3 has refined road manners that will likely surprise car shoppers expecting the typically flabby ride and handling of many economy cars.
Unlike most economy cars, the 2007 Mazda 3 offers a distinctive and upscale interior design. Individual pods surround the large, clear gauges, while precise control actions, high-grade materials and tight build tolerances support the initial sense of impressive quality. Even taller folks will be comfortable up front, and the driver will appreciate the standard tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel. For those under 6 feet tall, the rear seat should prove accommodating, thanks to its well-shaped and supportive design. Taller sorts will feel pinched for legroom, however. Sedans offer 11.4 cubic feet of trunk space; the hatchback offers 17 cubes behind its rear seat and 31 when it's folded.
2007 Mazda 3 models
The compact 2007 Mazda 3 is available as a four-door sedan or hatchback. There are five trim levels available for the sedan: i, i Touring, s, s Touring and s Grand Touring. The hatchback ("five-door") comes in s, s Touring and s Grand Touring trims. All i sedans have a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a 60/40-split-folding rear seat with center armrest and a CD stereo with an audio input jack. The i Touring trim adds 16-inch alloy wheels, air-conditioning, cruise control, an upgraded stereo, keyless entry, a height-adjustable driver seat and full power accessories. Mazda 3 s models come with all of the above, plus the larger engine, special interior trim and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls. The s Touring adds 17-inch alloys and body side sills to the mix, while the top-line s Grand Touring provides heated leather seats, automatic climate control, rain-sensing wipers and a trip computer. Options include an in-dash CD changer, satellite radio, a moonroof and, for the Grand Touring versions, a navigation system.
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most helpful consumer reviews
5 out of 5 stars
138k and still going strong
2007 Mazda 3 s Touring 4dr Sedan (2.3L 4cyl 5A)
excellent, reliable vehicle! With the correct PM, this car runs just as efficient when I first bought it 5 years ago with 32k miles on it. Replaced front struts, rear shocks, brakes and rotors, gear box oil, spark plugs, air filter, regular oil changes (all easy DIY work), and flushed all other fluids. Over 138k miles on it, and runs like it has 38k miles! With proper PM of this car, … I plan to get it to 300k before finally having to trade it in or buy a new Mazda. Highly recommend!
5 out of 5 stars
'Zoom, zoom' is not just a slogan
2007 Mazda 3 i Sport 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
Wow, the driving performance is amazing. I loved my old cars ('86 Mazda RX-7 and '99 Subaru Impreza Outback wagon), but I really, really love my Mazda 3. I get at least 35 mpg highway. The clutch is so smooth. The steering and handling is that of a fine tuned luxury car. The acceleration, especially at higher speeds, is very impressive for a 2.0L. Many neat interior design … features. If you love driving, but want something economical, look no further. If you want a small luxury car, get it fully loaded and enjoy.
4.5 out of 5 stars
Mazda3 i Leaves Little to be Desired
Ryan B, 10/15/2006
2007 Mazda 3 i Touring 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)
Just recently purchased a brand new M3iT, and I must say, I have only one thing that wish was different with the car - a remote trunk release on the fob. Handling is amazing, with the independent rear end, and the variable power assist steering never has it been so fun to make to U-turns! The 2.0 is quick and responsive even when paired with the AT. The auto stick makes normal runs to … the store much more enjoyable, and the trunk is very spacious whatever you may have (60/40 rear seat too). The front seats are adjustable in a few ways. The lumbar support, height, reclining, and the telescopic steering wheel makes sure your comfortable in any position.
5 out of 5 stars
Great fun car for the money
2007 Mazda 3 s Grand Touring 4dr Hatchback (2.3L 4cyl 5A)
Bam! Mazda has kicked it up a few notches in the compact car segment. The car is everything I expected and more. After taking it for a test drive, I knew I had made a right choice in purchasing the 3. The list of features in the fully loaded GT is something you would normally find in cars retailing for more than $30K. I got mine in true red and it looks great. The engine is quick for a … car in this class. Not the old 4 bangers of the past. Overall just a fun car to drive.
2007 3 Highlights
|Combined MPG||27 MPG|
|Cost to Drive||$141/month|
|Cargo Capacity |
All Seats In Place
|Drivetrain||front wheel drive|
|Warranty||3 years / 36,000 miles|
NHTSA Overall Rating
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
- Frontal Barrier Crash RatingOverallNot RatedDriver4 / 5Passenger4 / 5
- Side Crash RatingOverallNot Rated
- Side Barrier RatingOverallNot RatedDriver3 / 5Passenger3 / 5
- Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsFront SeatNot RatedBack SeatNot Rated
- RolloverRollover4 / 5Dynamic Test ResultNo TipRisk Of RolloverNot Rated
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
- Small Overlap Front Driver-Side TestNot Tested
- Small Overlap Front Passenger-Side TestNot Tested
- Moderate Overlap Front Test – OriginalGood
- Moderate Overlap Front Test – UpdatedNot Tested
- Side Impact Test – OriginalPoor
- Side Impact Test – UpdatedNot Tested
- Roof Strength TestNot Tested
- Rear Crash Protection / Head RestraintMarginal