this car is fun to drive, while it may not have the same power as the new 3 or many new small cars now (2015) it still gets up and goes with the 2.3L motor 7.2 seconds to 60 in my test with a stopwatch and a friend with the 5 speed manual. the passenger motor mount is fluid filled and breaks frequently spilling the fluid and causing vibrations that feel like a bent rim but the mount is cheap to buy and easy to replace with a jack and simple tools. gas mileage is simply ok. its not great but not horrible i get about 25.5-28mpg average depending on how much highway i drive and how much fun i decide to have that gas tank, but i did not get it for the mpg but for the fun i have driving it. the seats are comfortable and me being just at 6' tall i have plenty of room to move around. the interior plastics are well made and feel solid and at 7 years old still look new. the a/c is ice cold. the regular non hid lights are still decently bright and when upgraded with brighter bulbs give great beam pattern. I have owned mine for almost a year and put 8500 miles on it and the only issue was the motor mount and a thermostat (but thermostats go out on 99% of all cars) the sunroof motor was also loose and quit functioning but 3 screws fixed that and its worked just fine since then. the car handles great and feels rock solid driving down the road. it does have a minor amount of wind noise but nothing that makes it unbearable, just noticeable (and may just be because its 7 years old)
simply put this car is fun and handles great it seems to be built well and has not given me any major issues. just like all small mazda cars its zippy and fun. test drive one thats been well maintained (as thats what all cars need) and you will be pleasantly surprised at how it handles and the amount of power it has.
Well I must say the car held up well, through a wreck in the rear that was not my fault a 11,000 pound f350 hit me and it was still drivable, got that fixed. then it got totaled by a wreck that was my fault, but it did its job and protected me. so I bought a 2011 to replace this one. they are great cars
I love driving this car. I hate how many things have stopped working. Air Conditioner, electric windows, electric door locks, Stereo. All broken. I'll not be buying another mazda. My wife bought a VW rabbit pretty much the same time I bought the mazda and her car still drives like new.
"It must have love but it's over now..."Just as so many of them, my engine failed at just 28k very light miles. Bought the car used (Certified) at d Mazda dealership with only 19k miles. No warning signs, no lights, not even signs of oil consumption. Noticed a subtle rattling noise over 2500 RPM, took it to the dealer - death certificate issued in 2 hours. The car was still under Mazda power train warranty. Mazda Motors of America refused to honor it.
Used top shelf synthetic oil, name-brand filters, never seen jiffy-lube places...kept all records and receipts and yet - warranty denied due to "lack of maintenance".
Save yourself the trouble, do your research, on the 2.3l engine. Don't buy.