Car looks great and handles well, but... The 2.0, 4 cylinder is low on power. I expected a bit more zip for a small car with almost 150 HP. Gas mileage below avg. for a car this size. Only get a few mpg more than my Toyota Camry V-6. Handles great, but ride suffers. If you like to feel every bump in the road, you will love this car. Replacing the OEM tires helps, especially with road noise. Interior design is nice, but materials are of average quality, which I expect for a car in this category. Developed a few noises & small intermittent rattles not long after purchase. Some I remedied, the dealer fixed one, some remain. A/C is weak & must keep on high during days over 90'
I have owned a Mazda 3 for 2 years now. I can't complain much because it has been a reliable car. It is definitely NOT a family car but when we bought it we jumped quick because our other car was dying. The air conditioner is very sub-par, heat is good. Drives good, Interior is made fairly cheap as we have had several things break. Overall good car-I would recommend this car for a single person or a couple with no kids.
Love my car, it is a beast, so glad I got the manual trans though, without it I could imagine this machine being a little sluggish for my tastes. I wanted a car I would enjoy for many years to come and I think I have it. Excellent gas mileage, even considering how I drive it at times, got 39 recently, mix of highway and back roads, and I tend to drive fast, needless to say, impressed with the zoom zoom. This car is a flat out awesome for its price, and has a lot of potential and I just got the base line model!
I got the '09 M3i, 2.0 manual. I deliver pizza and do a lot of driving. I've driven nice cars; a porche, some bmw's and a few other nice cars so I'm trying to be completely objective with my review and will break down my scoring on the scale above. Performance: zippy, but not real fast, can't hang with the big boys but the handling is superb, which brought the score up to a 7/10. Comfort: I drive for HOURS! I'm never uncomfortable. 7/10. Fuel economy: I avg 27 mpg...depending on the use of AC and if i'm driving like a maniac which i sometimes do. 350-290 miles per tank.(usually around 320). 7/10. Fun to drive: that the handling is so surprisingly responsive combined
Being an engineer, did all the research, looking for the most value and fun without going the the price of the European performance compacts. I've had the car now for a year and a half and, surprisingly, age has made my M3 a better car. Starting off the car can have harsh ride qualities. With age, the ride has mellowed (w/o losing the fun) and the engine performance is still zippy.