2019 Mazda 3 Sedan

Type:

What’s new

  • The Mazda 3 is fully redesigned for 2019
  • Part of the fourth Mazda 3 generation introduced for 2019

Pros & Cons

  • Premium interior materials in the upper trim levels provide a classy vibe
  • The seats are supremely comfortable and supportive
  • Spirited handling
  • Excellent audio quality from both available sound systems
  • Not much legroom in the back seat
  • New Skyactiv-X engine won't be available at launch
  • Less cargo space than other compact sedans
MSRP Starting at
$21,000

Save as much as $3,586
Select your model:

Which 3 does Edmunds recommend?

If you're buying a sedan, skip straight past the base model and choose at least the Select package. It doesn't cost much more but adds a ton of useful comfort, entertainment and safety features. The 3 hatchback is automatically configured this way, so no upgrades are needed. However, we recommend spending a little more for the Preferred package, which adds a power driver's seat, heated front seats, and a crisp-sounding 12-speaker Bose audio system.

Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

7.6 / 10

With crossovers becoming the de facto choice for many buyers, the humble compact sedan needs to offer something a little extra to stay competitive. Luckily, the redesigned 2019 Mazda 3 delivers.

The Mazda 3's aptitude for sharp handling stretches back several generations and continues with the new model. Last year's optional 2.5-liter engine is now standard across the board, ensuring that every 3 has plenty of power, too. Mazda has also made all-wheel drive an available option this year. AWD gives the 3 enhanced grip on low-traction surfaces such as snow and will undoubtedly be a draw for shoppers living in cold-weather climates.

As long as you can accept the limited amount of rear-seat space, the Mazda 3's interior is sure to impress. The cabin is elegantly detailed with expensive-looking aluminum trim, solid-feeling switchgear and, on all but the base sedan, faux leather door accents. Select the Premium package, and the Mazda 3's cabin will seem worthy of an Audi badge.

The Mazda 3 isn't perfect. As noted, the rear seat is quite tight, and there's a fair bit of tire noise at highway speeds. But in the big picture, there's nothing here that should seriously dissuade shoppers. For car shoppers looking for an upscale and fun-to-drive small sedan or hatchback, the 2019 Mazda 3 is a great pick.

Notably, we picked the 2019 Mazda 3 as one of Edmunds' Best AWD Sedans for this year.

What's the Mazda 3 like to live with?

The Mazda 3 has been one of our favorite small cars for years now, and several examples have graced our long-term fleet over the last decade. Read our long-term Mazda 3 test to learn more about what it's like to live with day to day over the course of 20,000 miles. Note that while our tester is a 2020 Mazda 3, there are no significant changes between our 2020 Preferred model and its 2019 equivalent.

2019 Mazda 3 models

The 2019 Mazda 3 is a small sedan or hatchback sold in a small number of trims, which Mazda now calls "packages." The base model sedan is very lightly equipped, but the Select package adds quite a bit of equipment at a reasonable cost. Base hatchbacks include the Select package. The Preferred package adds heated seats and a kicking sound system, while the top-level Premium package adds a sunroof and leather upholstery, among other upgrades. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is available on all versions except the base sedan.

Every Mazda 3 is powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine (186 horsepower, 186 pound-feet of torque) paired to a six-speed automatic transmission. A manual transmission is optional on the front-wheel-drive hatchback with the Premium package.

The base Mazda 3 sedan comes with 16-inch alloy wheels, LED exterior lighting (headlights, taillights and daytime running lights), a rearview camera, push-button start, a driver information screen, a 60/40-split folding rear seat, an 8.8-inch central display, Bluetooth, voice commands, and an eight-speaker audio system with HD radio and two USB ports.

Choosing the Select package adds 18-inch wheels, automatic headlights, automatic wipers, keyless entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, vinyl door trim, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, simulated leather upholstery, a rear armrest, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality. Additional safety features include forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, a blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, a driver attention monitor, automatic high beam control, and lane keeping assist.

The base hatchback is equipped with the contents of the sedan with the Select package, plus a rear roof spoiler and a cargo cover.

Add the Preferred package, and you'll get a power-adjustable driver's seat, driver-seat memory functions, heated front seats, and a 12-speaker Bose audio system with satellite radio.

The top-trim Premium package further adds adaptive headlights, a sunroof, a head-up display, leather upholstery, and paddle shifters for models with the automatic transmission. Hatchbacks also receive black-painted wheels.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Mazda 3 Premium Sedan (2.5L inline-4 | 6-speed automatic | AWD).

Scorecard

Overall7.6 / 10
Driving8.0
Comfort7.5
Interior7.5
Utility7.0
Technology7.0

Driving

8.0
Mazda has always prioritized excellent driving characteristics, and this Mazda 3 is no different. The handling is crisp, and the steering has a light but engaging feel. It's so good that we think the 3 could handle a more powerful engine even though it doesn't need it.

Acceleration

8.0
The non-turbocharged four-cylinder is eager and delivers smooth power from the onset, but it really gets going from the middle of the rev range up to the redline. Merging onto freeways isn't a problem, and its 8.3-second 0-60 mph acceleration is better than many in its class.

Braking

7.5
The brake pedal feels reassuringly firm and delivers a sure response. Drivers will find it very easy to modulate smoothly in stop-and-go traffic, and the car feels quite stable when the brakes are applied suddenly. A 60-0 mph panic stop took 121 feet at our test track, which is average for this class.

Steering

7.5
The steering is quick and precise but has a light, almost too-easy feel about it. However, the driver gets decent feedback and can genuinely feel what the car is doing. The 3 makes tidy U-turns, and the steering wheel feels good in your hands.

Handling

8.0
When the road stops being straight, Mazda 3 delivers handling that is comfortable and confidence-inspiring. It feels balanced, changes directions readily and stays controlled around turns. There's lots of grip, too.

Drivability

8.5
Aggressive drivers might find the automatic transmission to be a tad sluggish in normal mode. For them there's Sport mode, which makes the transmission more responsive. Either way, the throttle delivers the engine's power smoothly. Available all-wheel drive makes the Mazda 3 a strong choice for winter driving.

Comfort

7.5
Mazda has succeeded in delivering a sporty premium experience without sacrificing comfort. Credit its compliant ride, comfortable and supportive seating, and sufficiently noise-insulated cabin. It's not perfect, though: Our test car's climate control system didn't seem sufficiently powerful, and some of our drivers felt the headrests were set at an uncomfortable angle.

Seat comfort

7.5
The front seats in the Mazda 3 are comfortable and supportive. The power driver's seat offers a good amount of adjustment, and the side bolsters are effective at holding you tight without being confining. Some editors thought the headrests leaned too far forward, though. The rear seats are nicely contoured.

Ride comfort

8.0
The Mazda 3 is meant to be a sporty sedan, so it has a well-controlled suspension that limits body motion. While this makes the ride stiffer than most, the suspension is compliant and absorbs bumps and pavement irregularities quite well. The amount of comfort for your daily commute is impressive despite this car's sporty nature.

Noise & vibration

8.0
Generally speaking, the Mazda 3 has a quiet cabin. There is some road and wind noise, but it's more akin to background noise than something that grabs your attention. We didn't detect any unwanted mechanical vibrations either. It all lines up well with Mazda's stated desire to deliver a premium environment in a sporty-themed car.

Climate control

6.5
The dual-zone climate controls are logically arrayed along the upper shelf of the center dashboard and feature accessible temperature knobs. The recirculation/fresh air button is there, too, but the labeling is unclear. We had to dial our car's Auto setting quite low to get it to blow cold air, and the seat heaters were slow to warm up.

Interior

7.5
The Mazda 3's interior is well-thought-out and nice to be in. Front-seat occupants will enjoy their space, but taller drivers may wish for more steering wheel reach. Mazda seems to have sacrificed rear passenger legroom and headroom in the name of sleeker styling.

Ease of use

8.5
While the Mazda 3 display screen lacks touchscreen functionality, the single-knob controller is intuitive. This controller-based interface is one of the best around. Nothing is complicated in this car. The controls and buttons are easy to see and understand. The setup doesn't take long to get used to, and once you do, a glance is all it takes to verify and select a function.

Getting in/getting out

7.0
The front seats are set low, so you'll have to settle onto the side bolster and then slide in. The roofline slopes downward, so even passengers of moderate height might need to duck to get into the back.

Driving position

8.0
The Mazda 3 has a pleasing driving position because the broad, flat dash and hood give a commanding view ahead. The driver's seat is positioned well and readily adjustable. Our tallest driver wished for a bit more telescoping range from the steering wheel, but it was a minor point.

Roominess

7.0
The front seating area delivers a fair amount of leg, head and shoulder space, and the broad, expansive dashboard styling further enhances that spacious sensation. But rear legroom and headroom are below average, so the rear seating area can feel snug if the front-seat occupants slide their seats back.

Visibility

7.0
Mazda's 3 provides decent visibility to the front and sides. Direct rear and rear-quarter visibility is limited by the sloping roofline, high rear deck and thick rear pillars. Thankfully, the 3 comes equipped with a blind-spot monitor, rear parking sensors and a rearview camera as standard equipment.

Quality

9.0
Craftsmanship is solid in the Mazda 3. The panel gaps are tight, the controls feel solid, and the materials are of high-quality. The chrome accent that adorns the dash is a nice touch. And with the elimination of the touchscreen, there are no fingerprints around the screen area.

Utility

7.0
While we can't say the Mazda 3 is an exceptionally utilitarian sedan, its capacity and usability are at least average for the segment. And while it is easy to fit car seats in the back, bigger ones may impinge on front occupants simply because the Mazda 3 doesn't have a lot of rear legroom.

Small-item storage

7.0
The doors have average-size pockets that can easily hold a typical water bottle. The center console is shallow but somewhat broad, and there is a small bin to the left of the steering wheel. Another cubby sits ahead of the shifter, and it is big enough for a larger smartphone. Only the passenger-side rear seatback is equipped with a pocket.

Cargo space

6.5
With only 13.2 cubic feet of cargo volume, the Mazda 3 trails slightly behind the class leaders. It does offer a wide loading area, and the trunk is deep. But the wheelwells intrude and pinch down the width from each side. In all, it's still quite useful, and the rear seatbacks do fold down in a 60/40-split.

Child safety seat accommodation

7.0
The car seat anchors are easy to find and clearly marked in each of the outboard rear seat positions. But larger rear-facing car seats are more apt to encroach on front-passenger space because the Mazda 3's rear legroom isn't as generous as that of its main rivals.

Technology

7.0
The 3 offers a strong suite of active safety gear, but it's not standard on all versions. The audio system sounds great, and the 8.8-inch infotainment screen looks vibrant and works well with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. And while we do like the single-knob controller, the lack of touchscreen functionality ultimately limits what the system can do.

Smartphone integration

6.5
Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are now standard on the Mazda 3. The single-knob controller is easy and intuitive to use on either platform, but the lack of touchscreen functionality negates some of the usefulness. During testing, we had connection issues with an Android Auto device.

Driver aids

7.5
The Mazda 3's comprehensive suite of active safety gear is standard on all but the base model. You get forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, a blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, a driver attention monitor, automatic high beam control, and lane keeping assist. The adaptive cruise control holds speed well but can stop abruptly when it's not strictly necessary in traffic.

Voice control

6.5
The subpar voice recognition system requires exact syntax. Navigation requires the complete address, category search only seems to work with gas stops and restaurants, and the number of points of interest is limited. Thankfully, smartphone voice controls integrate seamlessly and can be activated by holding the voice button longer.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2019 Mazda 3.

5 star reviews: 71%
4 star reviews: 13%
3 star reviews: 4%
2 star reviews: 4%
1 star reviews: 8%
Average user rating: 4.3 stars based on 24 total reviews

Trending topics in reviews

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  • appearance
  • road noise
  • seats
  • driving experience
  • fuel efficiency
  • dashboard
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  • spaciousness
  • lights
  • ride quality
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Most helpful consumer reviews

4 out of 5 stars, European character with Japanese flare
Jay H,
Premium 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A)

I purchased this car for a few reason, it's gorgeous inside and out and it offers AWD. I've always wanted an AWD sedan for the way they handle and for the added traction and stability they offer in the rain, snow or what have you. I did my due diligence and read many reviews as well as watched video reviews on this car so I thought I was well prepared and knew what I was getting. A good number of the reviews are done by journalists in markets other than the USA so they mention features that are not on my car. I was excited about this car because I wanted Traffic Sign Recognition, 360 degree camera, Traffic Jam Assist and Lane Centering. All are features that are only offered in markets other than the USA and all are described in the owners manual of the car. Needless to say I purchased the car and didn't even realize that these features were not on it. I assumed that the Premium model that I purchased would be fully loaded. Also, the Traffic Sign Recognition only works if you pay an additional $400 for the digital maps needed to activate the GPS system. I found the maps on eBay and bought it for $150, a huge savings. I got lucky and it works just fine. It did add Speed Limit notifications next to my Speedometer but not true Traffic Sign Recognition. The speed limits that it displays are stored as part of the GPS maps, not read by the camera system to be displayed on the fly. I also feel that the GPS maps should be included as standard. This car has been recalled a few times already, one for loose lug nuts and the most recent for the Cylinder Deactivation System which could malfunction and seize the engine. It's a software fix so I'm not overly concerned. Also, I get a warning that the Auto Headlights are malfunctioning if the car sits all day in the hot sun. When I get into the hot car and start it I get the warning message. Mazda is aware of this too but so far no recall to fix the issue. The engine is very smooth and revs willingly. The transmission is probably the fastest shifting automatic that I've ever encountered. It's shifts are silky smooth, precise and always in the right gear. So far fuel economy is nothing special. The trip computer says that I get between 19-22 City and 26 Highway. I'll give it a while longer to see if it improves as the car breaks in. The interior is a bit small but that's fine with me, I'm only 5'8" and I like everything to be within reach.

5 out of 5 stars, Brand new, so jury is still out on some ratings
Jan Klincewicz,
Premium 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A)

I traded in my 2014 4 door i Grand Touring. It was incredibly reliable but horrible in snow. I have not had a chance to really test the AWD as it is now spring. The interior is MUCH upgraded, and the infotainment system and safety features rock. Very 21st century. Beautiful materials / craftsmanship on interior. Much quieter ride than previous versions. Not an ASS-kicking engine, but fin to drive on winding roads. Still has the "Zoom-Zoom" especially in Sports mode.

5 out of 5 stars, An Excellent Driving Experience
Roquen,
Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A)

I bought this car (Mazda 3 Select) about two months ago and have already put 4000 miles on it via several road trips. I can say that it is extremely comfortable, up-scale, and it is Fun to drive. I came from a 2015 Honda Civic (1.5 l turbo) . Having owned both I can say that I can give a slight edge to the Mazda just because of the handling and feel on any curved road. It's just fun and almost whimsical to drive. Don't get me wrong, both the Civic and the Mazda 3 are excellent compact cars, and they both have many strengths and few weaknesses, but I am just ever so slightly more in love with my new Mazda!

5 out of 5 stars, 2000 miles after purchase....
Sabra,
Premium 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A)

I purchased a new Mazda3 in April 2019. I originally test drove a 2016 Mazda3 GT because I thought I wanted a used car vs a new one. After driving both, I chose the new 3 premium package. Although I've had one hiccup with the car (which the dealership promptly corrected), I've enjoyed how comfortable the car is, as well as the gas mileage. My only complaint is how easily the piano black interior trim scratches. It seems that the trim should be ALOT more scratch resistant than it is. The Radar controlled cruise control takes a little getting used to also. Overall, an awesome little car :) UPDATE: At the 8000 mile mark something went TERRIBLY wrong with this car... it slammed on brakes all by itself, causing injury to my neck and teeth. It has been at the dealership now for 26 days with no date given for repair. Apparently my car was one of two that has done this in the US. If you have kids or are an older adult who can’t afford to take the risk, don’t buy this car until the Mazda engineers can assure you it’s not going to develop a mind of its own!!!

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2019 Mazda 3 video

2019 Mazda 3 First Look | LA Auto Show

2019 Mazda 3 First Look | LA Auto Show

[MUSIC PLAYING] JONATHAN ELFALAN: That right there? That's the 2019 Mazda 3. It's the all-new, five passenger compact car that's been redesigned from the ground up. Now, it wears Mazda's all new Kodo design, so it looks a lot like the rest of the vehicles in Mazda's current lineup. Which isn't a bad thing for sure, because it's a good looking group. Mazda is offering the 3 again as both a hatchback and sedan, but they've given them decidedly different personalities this time. The hatchback, well, it's a little shorter. It's a little more bulbous than the current model. It kind of looks like a low-riding SUV type. Now the sedan, it's about three inches longer. It's got a much more elegant, much more elongated, sleek profile. It looks like a downsized version of a Mazda 6. Now when these cars arrive early next year, they're going to come with a 2.5 liter inline-four, the Skyactiv G. It's actually one of the engine choices in the current car right now. And then later on in the year, Mazda's going to roll out their all new Skyactiv X engine. It uses HCCI, which stands for homogeneous charge compression ignition. Which it operates kind of like a diesel engine, but it runs off of regular gasoline fuel. By doing so, it's able to make more power, more torque, and operate at a higher efficiency, which is pretty cool stuff. You have the choice of either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic. But for the very first time, Mazda is offering this 3 with all-wheel drive. And that's pretty rare in this compact segment. Another highlight and one of my favorite aspects of the Mazda 3 is the interior. I mean, look at it. You have this very clean, driver-centric design, which resembles kind of like an Audi or an Alfa Romeo. It's very luxury adjacent. And right in the center, you have this large, 8.8-inch center display that's just sort of peeking out over this leather-wrapped dash that spans from the driver's gauge cluster all the way to the passenger side door. In the center of the car is the MazdaConnect controller that's evolved into a more polished version of its former self. And from what we can see, it's probably just as user-friendly as the old version. Overall, we really like this cabin and we can't wait to take a test drive in it. So that's a quick look at the all-new 2019 Mazda 3. Unfortunately, we don't have any prices for you right now. But if we had to take a guess, we think it would start right about the mid grade of the current model, say, $21-22,000. Anyways, we're really looking forward to driving the new Mazda 3 when it arrives early next year. So keep it tuned here for updates and be sure to visit edmunds.com for all your car shopping needs.

Edmunds Vehicle Testing Manager Jonathan Elfalan is at the reveal of the all-new Mazda 3 for 2019. The Mazda 3 competes in the compact-car segment alongside cars such as the Honda Civic and the Volkswagen Golf and comes in sedan and hatchback configurations. The current 2018 model has been around since 2014, so the Mazda 3 was due for an update to stay competitive with an ever-improving segment. Has Mazda done enough with the new model?

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Features & Specs

Preferred 4dr Sedan features & specs
Preferred 4dr Sedan
2.5L 4cyl 6A
MSRP$24,200
MPG 26 city / 35 hwy
SeatingSeats 5
Transmission6-speed shiftable automatic
Horsepower186 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all for sale
Select 4dr Sedan features & specs
Select 4dr Sedan
2.5L 4cyl 6A
MSRP$22,600
MPG 26 city / 35 hwy
SeatingSeats 5
Transmission6-speed shiftable automatic
Horsepower186 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all for sale
Premium 4dr Sedan features & specs
Premium 4dr Sedan
2.5L 4cyl 6A
MSRP$26,500
MPG 27 city / 36 hwy
SeatingSeats 5
Transmission6-speed shiftable automatic
Horsepower186 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all for sale
Preferred 4dr Sedan AWD features & specs
Preferred 4dr Sedan AWD
2.5L 4cyl 6A
MSRP$25,600
MPG 25 city / 33 hwy
SeatingSeats 5
Transmission6-speed shiftable automatic
Horsepower186 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all for sale
See all 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan features & specs

Safety

Our experts’ favorite 3 safety features:

Smart Brake Support
Warns you if you are rapidly approaching a vehicle, pedestrian or bicyclist. Can apply the brakes to reduce the severity of a collision.
Mazda Radar Cruise Control
Maintains a driver-selected distance between the Mazda 3 and the car in front.
Lane Departure Warning System
Alerts the driver if the Mazda 3 begins wandering outside its lane.

Mazda 3 vs. the competition

Mazda 3 vs. Honda Civic

Like the Mazda 3, the Honda Civic is a small car sold in sedan and hatchback body styles (you can get a coupe, too). The base-level Civic is less expensive than the 3, partially because the Civic uses a less powerful engine in its lower trims. Select the Civic's turbocharged four-cylinder, and the two cars are more evenly matched. There's no clear winner here — each offers its own distinct advantages and disadvantages. To learn more about the Civic of this generation, read Edmunds' long-term road test of a 2016 Honda Civic Touring Sedan.

Compare Mazda 3 & Honda Civic features

Mazda 3 vs. Mazda CX-3

A CX badge is Mazda's way of distinguishing its crossovers, and the Mazda CX-3 is the smallest of the bunch. It's well-matched against the 3 in terms of price, but the CX-3 is based on the previous-generation Mazda 3. As such, it looks a little bit older inside, but age has done nothing to dull the CX-3's impressive handling abilities. It does have a less powerful engine, however, and loading it up with people slows down this pint-size SUV.

Compare Mazda 3 & Mazda CX-3 features

Mazda 3 vs. Mazda 6

The Mazda 6 is a midsize sedan that provides more passenger room than the 3. It's a little more expensive, but for drivers with families, it's the smarter choice. Although the 6's interior design is aging, its cabin is well-trimmed, and performance enthusiasts will love the optional turbocharged four-cylinder. Note that unlike the 3, the Mazda 6 is not offered with all-wheel drive.

Compare Mazda 3 & Mazda 6 features

Related 3 Articles

2019 Mazda 3 Hatchback AWD First Drive

Subaru Is Officially Put on Notice With a New, Upscale AWD Rival

Cameron Rogers by Cameron Rogers , Reviews EditorMarch 23rd, 2019

How do you take down a titan? Most will simply wait around for what remains of the Avengers to figure it out. For Mazda, it's beating Subaru at its own game. For decades, Subaru built its brand on having a lineup of vehicles equipped exclusively with all-wheel drive (the Toyota-codeveloped BRZ sports car notwithstanding). AWD all the time made it easy for buyers in the mountains or upper half of the country to find a car that could conquer icy road conditions. Now Mazda is stepping into the fray with the new 2019 Mazda 3. While front-wheel drive remains standard, both sedan and hatchback body styles offer an AWD powertrain. We attended a press event in Lake Tahoe, California, to see how the Mazda 3's new all-wheel-drive system performed in the snow and on dry pavement.

Snow Days

Our test began on a snow-blanketed course designed to highlight the difference between the Mazda 3's front-wheel- and all-wheel-drive powertrains. The first car, a front-drive sedan with all-season tires, showed aptitude at low speeds but had trouble gaining traction on hills. A similar model riding on winter rubber fared better, exhibiting quicker steering responses and better handling. The winner, however, was undoubtedly the AWD-equipped Mazda 3 with winter tires. The extra traction from the rear kept the car on a tidy line around turns. Though the course was hardly demanding, it clearly showed the benefits of AWD in limited traction situations.

We also drove a Mazda 3 with the G-Vectoring Control (GVC) system disabled. The GVC feature — added to the previous Mazda 3 in 2017 — slightly reduces engine torque when the wheel is turned to improve steering response. A GVC defeat button is not available in production models, but a Mazda engineer disabled the system using a laptop with special software to highlight GVC's effects. The difference is immediately noticeable in a back-to-back comparison. With GVC enabled, the vehicle reacts quicker to steering wheel inputs, and you don't need to turn the wheel as much to elicit the desired response.

On the Road Again

Shortly after the AWD demo, we embarked on a 200-mile trip north to Route 49, then southwest to Sacramento. The majority of the drive was spent on the twisty roads surrounding the Tahoe National Forest, which is an ideal place to show off the Mazda 3's handling prowess.

The 3 has always been one of the most enjoyable small cars to drive. We were concerned that the switch from last year's multilink rear suspension to the 2019 model's less sophisticated torsion beam rear suspension would dull the driving experience. But the 3 feels as sharp as ever. There's body roll to be sure, but the Mazda 3 is far better controlled and less floppy than other compact sedans and hatchbacks.

Traveling at higher speeds is similarly worry-free. The new 3 feels stable on the highway and needs very little correction to keep it tracking straight. Tire noise ramps up noticeably with the increase in speed, but wind and engine noise is fairly subdued. The new car is also more comfortable than the old version. Impacts aren't as harsh, and the ride quality is a little more pleasant. It strikes a perfect balance between sporty and secure.

Upmarket Interior

The previous Mazda 3 was a paragon of interior design and materials quality, and the 2019 model is even more so. Soft-touch plastics and leatherette are used extensively to create a cabin that looks far more upscale than competitors. Hard plastics are mostly absent from touch points and, if they are present, it's usually for a decorative aluminum or piano-black trim piece. Leather combinations for the top Premier trim levels consist of black or ivory for the sedan, while the hatchback offers black or a new red interior treatment.

Previous Mazda 3 owners will notice several changes to the cabin besides just the improved materials. Mazda says the front seats are redesigned and shaped to follow the natural curvature of one's spine better. Based on our experience, it seems to be effective as the driver's seat remained comfortable and supportive after hours of driving.

The infotainment system is also new. The display screen is now integrated with the dashboard and set closer to the windshield. Its location directly in the driver's line of sight makes it easier to see at a glance. Controlling it now requires using the knob just aft of the shifter — the previous screen could be used as a touchscreen when the car was stopped — but we don't really miss the touchscreen functionality. The placement of the screen and reliance of the knob has all been done with the intention of minimizing driver distraction.

The new interior isn't totally alien, however. As with the previous model, one of the Mazda's literal shortcomings is the lack of rear-seat space. The new 3 makes the Honda Civic feel absolutely cavernous in comparison. There are no rear air vents, and the 3 doesn't offer snazzy accouterments such as rear-seat heaters. These omissions, along with a lack of height or lumbar adjustment for the front passenger seat, reinforce the impression that the Mazda 3 is all about putting the driver first.

The practicality deficiency is echoed in the relatively compact cargo area. The sedan's trunk measures 13.2 cubic feet. That's smaller than the Civic's, but it holds slightly more than the Subaru Impreza's. As expected, the hatchback fares better at 20.1 cubic feet but is smaller than most competing hatchbacks. Moreover, the hatchback's elevated liftover height might make it difficult to remove heavy items from the cargo area. On the bright side, the rear seats fold nearly flat and don't require moving the front seats forward, even when they're set for a tall driver.

Pricing and Release Date

Pricing for the Mazda 3 is typically higher if you're comparison shopping against standard compact cars. The sedan's MSRP starts at $21,920 (including destination), which is nearly $1,000 more than an automatic-equipped Civic and a fair bit more than a comparable Hyundai Elantra, Kia Forte or Toyota Corolla. The kicker, though, is the all-wheel-drive version, which isn't available on the sedan's base trim. If all you want is an AWD sedan, you're looking at $24,920 for the Mazda 3 with the Select package. (The AWD hatchback is available in the base trim and starts at $25,895.) For reference, the all-wheel-drive Subaru Impreza with an automatic transmission starts at $20,480.

No doubt about it — the 2019 Mazda 3 is more expensive than its primary rivals and isn't as practical. But it's also considerably more luxurious and more fun to drive. In its upper trims, the Mazda 3's cabin looks just as nice as that of some entry-level luxury cars, and that's really what sets it apart from the crowd. If you're cross-shopping against the Audi A3 or BMW 230i, you might even find the Mazda's cabin looks more upscale. You won't get the luxury badge or a sweet turbocharged engine, but the Mazda feels just as good to drive and is easier on the wallet.

The 2019 Mazda 3 is on sale now in sedan and hatchback body styles, with a front- or all-wheel-drive powertrain.

2019 Mazda 3 First Drive

Fun Just Got More Sophisticated

Kurt Niebuhr by Kurt Niebuhr , Vehicle Test EditorJanuary 27th, 2019

Mazda talks a big game about driver involvement. Its widely marketed design philosophy — jinba ittai — loosely translates to horse and rider as one, implying the pursuit of a driving experience where control of the vehicle, mechanical or technological, becomes second nature. Spend too long listening about it and you'd think an essential oils sales pitch might come next.

But after a half-day's stint behind the wheel of the new 2019 Mazda 3, through the mess that is Hollywood traffic to some of L.A.'s best driving roads and back again, it's clear that Mazda's belief and dedication to this concept has made a marked difference in the experience of driving an already good compact sedan.

Stepping Up

First impressions show that Mazda's push to a more premium interior is successful. Already the class leader in terms of style and materials quality, the 2019 Mazda 3 further separates itself from the rest of the segment. We drove a fully loaded Premium package sedan, trimmed with generous amounts of leather upholstery, but even the basic version is full of pleasant soft touch surfaces. Both feel absolutely best in class, straight away. Regardless of trim level, the interior is intimate but not cramped, with every control and interface dutifully considered.

Immediately noticeable is the larger (now 8.8 inches) and repositioned multimedia screen, which is nestled higher up in the dash and canted toward the driver. The graphics are crisp, readable and modern, but the screen doesn't respond to touch; everything goes through a control knob, which, like the shift lever, has been moved slightly forward for better ergonomics. It also bears mentioning that the weighting and feel of the control knob are excellent. It needs just the right amount of force to turn, and its positive engagement and feel are echoed by every other control knob, be it climate control or audio.

Staring you in the face is a beautiful new steering wheel and instrument panel. The wheel is firm but thin and nicely contoured. And the redesigned control buttons have the look and feel of vintage audio equipment. With a center-mounted 7-inch digital display, the instrument panel is anything but vintage-looking. Flanked by very legible analog dials is the digital speedometer that can be reconfigured for multiple displays.

The audio system also deserves special mention. Since mounting speakers in the doors creates more holes, the mid-bass speakers have instead been mounted at the base of the windshield pillars and the tweeters relocated from the top of the dash to the leading edge of the doors for greater clarity. The result, even with the base stereo, is exceptionally clean and crisp sound at full volume. With the optional 12-speaker Bose unit, the output only gets better.

Deal With It

Considering how Mazda stresses driving dynamics, the 3's change from a multilink rear suspension to a less sophisticated torsion-beam setup is curious since this move tends to favor the accountant rather than the driver. The last Mazda 3 was unequivocally head of the class in terms of handling, and we're happy to say the new one holds its own at the sharp end of the segment even with this rear suspension.

The benefits to a torsion-beam setup aren't just fiscal — they're also spatial. Because of the fewer hard points (where the suspension bolts into the chassis and body), the Mazda 3 has fewer openings for noise and vibration to enter the cabin. And because a torsion-beam setup is less intrusive, both the trunk and the rear seat see greater capacity. Mazda has yet to offer specifications that show by how much.

In the pursuit of a potentially roomier interior, Mazda hasn't exactly squandered the 3's handling acumen. On a twisty road, the Mazda 3 uses all four wheels adeptly to ensure nimbleness and stability. And since Mazdas are already known for a firm, informative ride, the torsion-beam suspension doesn't immediately feel less sophisticated. We look forward to testing this setup further.

Have a Seat

Perhaps the most eye-opening example of Mazda's research into the human-machine connection has been with the seating. Mazda conducted numerous studies into the way people balance when they walk and move on a daily basis. As a result, the seats were designed to maintain the natural curve of the spine. The seat cushion, across all trim levels, has adjustable thigh support to enhance leg and pelvic support.

The results were clear. I normally use the door and the side of the center console to brace my legs during enthusiastic driving, which can often lead to bruising. However, so good is the seat that at no point during my time in the Mazda 3 did my knees touch the door or the center console. The level of fatigue you'd feel after battling two hours of snarling L.A. traffic and the tension involved in driving some of L.A.'s best mountain roads never materialized.

Power, Pricing and Release Date

The Mazda 3 is first available with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. Making a square 186 horsepower and pound-feet of torque, the engine is far from potent but still more than adequate for daily use, even when you drive with deliberate enthusiasm. The six-speed automatic provides quicker and smoother shifts than last year's, and a six-speed manual is available, too, but only with the hatchback. Available cylinder deactivation should help automatic and front-wheel-drive models achieve greater fuel economy than the last model's 30 mpg combined (26 city/35 highway) rating.

Prices start at $21,895 for the sedan and $24,495 for the hatchback, both including destination charges. Fully loaded, the sedan and the hatchback come in under $30,000, even with all-wheel drive. The 2019 Mazda 3 goes on sale in March.

2019 Mazda 3 First Look

A New Contender for the Compact-Car Crown

Jonathan Elfalan by Jonathan Elfalan , Manager, Vehicle TestingNovember 27th, 2018

Compact cars have become surprisingly good in these modern times. They're safer, more spacious, better equipped and more fuel-efficient than ever. Among the lot, the Mazda 3 is one of our perennial favorite, largely for its engaging driving experience and thoughtful cabin design that looks like it should command a higher price tag.

But the current Mazda 3 has been around since 2014 and newer compact competitors, such as the Honda Civic and the Kia Forte, have been threatening to knock the little Mazda down a rung or two. All that could change with the all-new 2019 Mazda 3, which debuts this week at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show.

The Juiciest Highlights First

What's immediately apparent is the Mazda 3's taut new skin, showcasing what Mazda says is the latest interpretation of its "Kodo design language" from its Vision Coupe Concept shown in 2017. It looks good, sure, but more on that in a bit. What's slightly more newsworthy for this 3 is the availability of Mazda i-Activ all-wheel drive for the first time. (Front-wheel drive is still standard.)

All-wheel drive is somewhat rare in the current compact-car segment, which includes the Subaru Impreza, the Mini Clubman All4 and high-end performance models such as the Ford Focus RS and Volkswagen Golf R. Mazda's i-Activ all-wheel drive, which is featured on a number of its crossovers, is an on-demand system that transfers power to the rear wheels when additional traction is needed but defaults to front-wheel drive to save fuel when it isn't. It works in conjunction with a new G-Vectoring Control Plus (GVC Plus) that uses the brakes to assist turning (torque-vectoring by brake), which can aid handling and help maintain composure in emergency avoidance maneuvers.

When it first launches, the Mazda 3 will be powered by a 2.5-liter inline-four from the Skyactiv-G family of engines and a choice of a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission. Power numbers have yet to be announced, but we expect it'll match or come close to the current model's 184 horsepower and 185 pound-feet of torque.

Later in the year, Mazda's ground-breaking Skyactiv-X engine will finally become a production reality under the hood of the new Mazda 3. It'll come equipped with something Mazda is calling its M Hybrid system —likely mild hybridization at most.

Brother From Another Mother

The new Mazda 3, like the outgoing model, is offered as a sedan or hatchback. But unlike the twin models rolling around the streets today, Mazda wanted to give the new cars distinctly different styling personalities for 2019. The hatchback shrugs off its character lines for soft body contours and a bulbousness in back resembling a low-riding Mazda CX-5. The sedan adds more than 3 inches in length, but no doubt trades some utility for a sleeker and more elegant profile.

Both models are within 0.2 inch in height and ride on identical wheelbases, an inch longer than the previous generation, and longer than any other car in the segment. One of the few shortcomings of the Mazda 3 was a lack of rear passenger legroom, so we expect the stretched wheelbase will help address the issue.

One detail that we found particularly confounding, especially for a company such as Mazda that champions driving excitement, was the decision to replace its current independent rear suspension setup with a less sophisticated torsion beam. This cost-saving measure can be expected to sacrifice handling and ride comfort points.

It's What's Inside That Counts

The current Mazda 3 gets high points for its interior amenities, and the new model looks to extend that lead further. Correction: Mazda is gunning for total interior domination.

The driver-centric cockpit design is clean, with an upscale simplicity that would make some luxury brands blush. An 8.8-inch color display peeks out from behind a leather-wrapped dash that extends from instrument cluster to the passenger door. The Mazda Connect controller has evolved into a more polished version of itself and is hopefully just as easy to use, too.

But it's not all about looks either. The steering wheel gains an additional 0.4 inch of telescoping adjustment at either end of the travel to suit a broader range of positions, and the gearshift has been moved forward and up, reducing the distance the driver's hand has to travel from the steering wheel. Mazda says cabin noise has been decreased through a new "two-wall" approach that leaves space between the body panels and carpet to better insulate, working alongside the sound-absorbing headliner and floor mats.

Safety First. Er, Fourth

Active safety driving aids are the new luxury today, and the Mazda 3 has a few neat ones. Mazda's i-Activsense includes a new driver monitoring system that uses both an infrared camera and infrared LED to monitor the driver's condition. It can track whether your eyes are wide-open or closing, how many times you blink, and even the angle of your mouth to determine if you're drowsy or fatigued. It also looks at the line of sight and eye movement to determine attentiveness, and it will sound an alert if it senses risk.

Front cross-traffic alert is another available feature that uses radar to detect vehicles approaching from blind spots at the front, such as when you're inching out of an alleyway. And finally, there's Mazda's adaptive cruise, called Cruising & Traffic Support, that assists low-speed following and has a lane keeping function.

It's also worth mentioning that the 2019 Mazda 3 features a new driver's knee airbag, the first ever on a Mazda car.

When Can I Get One?

Mazda says the first batch of 2019 Mazda 3 cars will arrive early next year, all of them equipped with the 2.5-liter Skyactiv-G engines. The Skyactiv-X cars will follow later in 2019. Pricing has not been announced, but you'll know as soon as we do.

FAQ

Is the Mazda 3 a good car?
The Edmunds experts tested the 2019 3 both on the road and at the track, giving it a 7.6 out of 10. You probably care about Mazda 3 fuel economy, so it's important to know that the 3 gets an EPA-estimated 28 mpg to 30 mpg, depending on the configuration. What about cargo capacity? When you're thinking about carrying stuff in your new car, keep in mind that the 3 has 13.2 cubic feet of trunk space. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a Mazda 3. Learn more
What's new in the 2019 Mazda 3?

According to Edmunds’ car experts, here’s what’s new for the 2019 Mazda 3:

  • The Mazda 3 is fully redesigned for 2019
  • Part of the fourth Mazda 3 generation introduced for 2019
Learn more
Is the Mazda 3 reliable?
To determine whether the Mazda 3 is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the 3. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the 3's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more
Is the 2019 Mazda 3 a good car?
There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2019 Mazda 3 is a good car. Edmunds' expert testing team reviewed the 2019 3 and gave it a 7.6 out of 10. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2019 3 is a good car for you. Learn more
How much should I pay for a 2019 Mazda 3?

The least-expensive 2019 Mazda 3 is the 2019 Mazda 3 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $21,000.

Other versions include:

  • Preferred 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) which starts at $24,200
  • Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) which starts at $22,600
  • Premium 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) which starts at $26,500
  • Preferred 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A) which starts at $25,600
  • Select 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A) which starts at $24,000
  • 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) which starts at $21,000
  • Premium 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A) which starts at $27,900
Learn more
What are the different models of Mazda 3?
If you're interested in the Mazda 3, the next question is, which 3 model is right for you? 3 variants include Preferred 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A), Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A), Premium 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A), and Preferred 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A). For a full list of 3 models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

More about the 2019 Mazda 3

2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Overview

The 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan is offered in the following styles: Preferred 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A), Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A), Premium 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A), Preferred 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A), Select 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A), 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A), and Premium 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A).

What do people think of the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2019 3 Sedan 4.3 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2019 3 Sedan.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan and all model years in our database. Our rich analysis includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2019 3 Sedan featuring deep dives into trim levels including Preferred, Select, Premium, etc. with careful analysis around pricing, features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving and performance. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Read our full review of the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan here.

Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan?

2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A)

The 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $24,920. The average price paid for a new 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A) is trending $3,586 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $3,586 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $21,334.

The average savings for the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A) is 14.4% below the MSRP.

Available Inventory:

We are showing 2 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan AWD (2.5L 4cyl 6A) vehicle(s) available in the Ashburn area.

2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A)

The 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $23,520. The average price paid for a new 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) is trending $3,182 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $3,182 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $20,338.

The average savings for the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) is 13.5% below the MSRP.

Available Inventory:

We are showing 1 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Select 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6A) vehicle(s) available in the Ashburn area.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on new cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which 2019 Mazda 3 Sedans are available in my area?

2019 Mazda 3 Sedan Listings and Inventory

There are currently 10 new 2019 [object Object] 3 Sedans listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $23,520 and mileage as low as 0 miles. Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan. Then select Edmunds special offers, perks, deals, and incentives to contact the dealer of your choice and save up to $1,048 on a new, used or CPO 2019 [object Object] 3 Sedan available from a dealership near you.

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2019 [object Object] 3 Sedan for sale near you.

Can't find a new 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan 3 Sedan you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a new Mazda 3 for sale - 1 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $17,649.

Find a new Mazda for sale - 10 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $21,916.

Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including all models of the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan and all available trim types: Base, Premium, Preferred, etc. Rich, trim-level features & specs and options data tracked for the 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan include (but are not limited to): MSRP, available incentives and deals, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (interior and exterior color, upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, cruise control, parking assistance, lane sensing, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy and MPG (city, highway, and combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (interior cabin space, vehicle length and width, seating capacity, cargo space). Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds expert review, safety rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2019 Mazda 3 Sedan?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Mazda lease specials