I'm a two car guy and passed on one of my cars to my sister and decided I needed a second to go along with my BMW z4. For the past 20 years I've used Subarus as my second car and have loved both of them--a Legacy and then an Impreza. It took me a year or so to decide on the Mazda 3 though it was a front runner all along. I wanted to get another Impreza but it had less horsepower than my 2009 model, and I didn't want the CRV. BMW 3 series was high on my list--but I just couldn't justify the cost against the 3. The driving dynamics are almost as good and there are just so many more features, particularly safety, on the Mazda. It's a lot of fun to drive.
I was the owner of a 2013 Mazda 3i Touring, the 2015 S - Grand Touring is a HUGE departure. The interior and feature are that of a much more expensive car. I've owned an Audi, BMW and Lexus, and the fit and finish rivals them, not to mention, the $2200 tech package includes items that would cost 2-3 times as much on a German car. The 2.5L is punchy and has a nice note to it. I am VERY happy with this purchase.
Owner of i Touring hatchback w/ 6-speed manual for 6+ months. I have had no issues & I enjoy owning this beautiful car. I've averaged 33.1 mpg overall with an assertive driving style.
I can say that I do NOT regret choosing the 2.0L engine. It is quick & punchy. The only time I have noticed a lack of power was when I was hauling 3 other adults & their luggage on hilly terrain.
What sets this car apart from the competition is its driving dynamics. It is a more fun & engaging drive with excellent steering feel. It is confident in corners & feels very light. I absolutely love this about the 3. Other cars in its class fall short of the 3 here.
Its quality exceeds its price tag.
Just turned in my 2012 Mazda 3 GT hatchback which I thought was a great car . . . practical but sporty. My few minor complaints have been addressed by this new model. Better styling, particularly up front. More power , especially when in sport mode. Six speed transmission. Really wanted the manual, but left that to my Miata. Back up camera.
Shopped this car against a BMW 4 series Grand Coupe. Almost as much car at half the price!
I had a wonderful Honda Fit for 9 years and loved it. However I'm not a kid anymore and wanted something more comfortable. 9 years ago I was looking at the Mazda 3 and the Fit and chose the Fit. Now I choose the Mazda. The larger 16" wheels and wheelbase are more road/bump friendly. It's quieter. The Honda was less comfortable for my aging bones and back. Mazda is a small bit bigger but not a difficult adjustment to park. Design of sheet metal and interior is elegant for a car of this price. Purchased 2015 dealer courtesy car with 5000 miles. Mileage is same as the fit and has a little more storage. Love it.