Used 2016 Mazda 3 Sedan
Edmunds' Expert Review
- Precise handling when going around turns
- very good fuel economy
- quick acceleration
- top crash test scores
- refined interior with intuitive controls
- available hatchback body style
- many advanced features are available.
- Above-average wind noise
- ride quality can be choppy with the optional 18-inch wheels.
Most helpful consumer reviews
i Sport 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 6A)
I was hit in the middle of the passenger side by a driver who ran a stop sign, hard enough that I spun 180 degrees and she continued on to hit a house across the street. I estimate she was doing 35-40 mph on a residential street and she never even touched her brakes. The Mazda3 was amazing. 2 days later I have a bruise where the seatbelt crossed my lap and another on my back where I'm assuming the seat supports pressed into me. That's it. No stiffness or soreness, no other injuries. The wreck honestly felt smoother than a bumpy roller coaster ride, although not nearly as fun. And when the air bags deployed, the car used my phone over the Bluetooth connection and called 911 automatically. I really liked my car. It handled well, was comfortable, fun to drive, attractive, and priced right. If the insurance totals mine out, I will be purchasing another Mazda3.
s Touring 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A)
I have previously owned 3 Mazda cars, just sold a 2013 Civic Si. What I really needed was a commuter car, and always liked the previous Mazda3, so I decided to try a new one. It's great. Comfortable on long drives, has a very nice stereo system in the GT (HD radio and XM). The GT has the Active driving display (HUD) which I really like. I'm not a big fan of the basic-basic dash layout, but the dash mounted infotainment screen gives you a lot of info (HD traffic, Nav, Text SMS, etc.,) The HUD also gives you Nav directions. Car does not perform like a Miata, but it is no slouch either. I have changed tires (and that made a good difference in how the car handles in tight corners). I love manual transmissions (and one is available), but I get into heavy traffic, and my wife can't drive stick. The shiftable automatic is great. Fuel mileage is very good for the size car it is and uses regular gas (avg. 32 mpg). If you are looking for a good all around car the 3 is a great choice; however, I would suggest that you don't skimp and get the bargain basement car hoping to upgrade parts later. I love the GT. UPDATE: 10/2018 25,000 miles (I used the O.E. upgrade and added Apple CarPlay - LOVE it. Sounds dumb but makes the car better by allowing Pandora and Waze to be placed on the Nav screen. Result? I don't like XM, I like Pandora instead. The problem with the 6-sp auto is that is that unlike a manual trans, you can't always tell what gear you're in by putting your hand on the shifter and when moving through traffic, I will lose count - and be in the wrong gear. Using the paddle shifter negates this. Problem solved. Trunk has more room than I anticipated and it's just a very easy car to live with. If only I could afford more than one Mazda at a time. I would buy a Mazda again in a minute.
Andrew in Marin,03/08/2016
i Grand Touring 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 6A)
I stopped buying Japanese cars a while ago. Despite the benefits of reliability and fuel efficiency, the Civic, Corolla and Prius were not fun for me to drive. I then tried a BMW 3 series which was a blast to drive but broke down too much and was expensive to fix. The Passat seemed like a good compromise but still had reliability issues and was expensive at the pump. Why am I telling you all of this? The Mazda 3 grand touring Sedan checks all the boxes for me. It's fun to drive (more so in the city than on the highway) It has a great infotainment system (Bose) and the interior reminded me a lot of the Audi A3 that I was testing (for $10k + more). The interior feels upscale, the acceleration is good and the handing is excellent. It feels much like my Miata from the 90's. My one concern is that I am not getting the advertised MPG which is one of the reasons for choosing this car. I am getting a combined of 28 MPG with modest driving. I had expected more like 33 MPG. The dealer says MPG will improve after 5000 miles (I'm only at 750). That seems like a long break-in time. Has anyone else experienced this? Overall, it's a great car.
s Grand Touring 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A)
The 3s Grand Touring was an easy choice. It rides and handles beautifully. The steering is quick and precise, and the driver's seat is very comfortable. The transmission shifts are crisp, and are very responsive to accelerator pressure. In addition, the audio system is the best I have experienced, no doubt because of the Bose speakers. When stopped temporarily on a hill, you have 2 seconds to move your foot from brake to accelerator before the car begins to roll. The headlights, taking their cue from the steering wheel, swivel to point in the direction you will be going, rather than where the car is pointing. There are, however, a number of annoyances. The electronics (with the exception of closing the driver's window) are disabled when the ignition is turned off. It requires a separate operation to restore the audio. Three distinct operations are needed to select a station, instead of, for example, simply switching between a pair of AM and FM stations. I would have appreciated all four windows, not just the driver's window, operating with one touch. The numbers on the dash cannot be read in sunlight when wearing sunglasses. The blind spot monitoring is mostly an annoyance, forever warning me not to change lanes while I am doing so safely. The reason is that it only measures distance, and has no knowledge of relative speed. While the BSM feature can be disabled, it cannot be decoupled from the cross-traffic alert, a most desirable feature. To deal with this problem, I have attached a pair of blind-spot mirrors to the side-view mirrors, and rely on this combination to make my decisions. While I am satisfied with the 25 mpg (in primarily city driving), the range is a big disappointment. The manual says that the car has a 13.2 gallon tank; however, it functions as if it had only an 11-gallon tank. Both the gas gauge (an inconsistent discrete device) and the range indicator show no miles left when only 11 gallons are required to fill the tank. So I get no more than 225 miles from a tank of gas. I would much prefer the old needle, which was a true indicator of the gas remaining in the tank. Despite these complaints, I would buy the Mazda 3 again, because it is a pleasure to drive.