2003 Mazda 6 Road Test Specs | Edmunds

2003 Mazda 6 - Road Test Specs

2003 Mazda 6 Sedan

(3.0L V6 5-speed Manual)


Model year2003
Styles 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5M)
Base MSRP$21,220.00
As-tested MSRP$19,549.00


Drive typeFWD
Engine typeinline 4
Displacement (cc/cu-in)3
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)220 @ 6,300
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)192 @ 5,000
Transmission type5-speed manual


Suspension, frontdouble wishbone
Suspension, rearmulti-link
Steering typespeed-proportional power steering
Tire size, frontP205/60HR16
Tire size, rearP205/60HR16
Brakes, frontventilated front disc / solid rear disc

Track Test Results

0-45 mph (sec.)5.2
0-60 mph (sec.)8.0
0-75 mph (sec.)12.0
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)16.15 @ 87.51
Braking, 30-0 mph (ft.)29.48
60-0 mph (ft.)120.46
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)63.1
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)38.7
Sound level @ idle (dB)67
@ Full throttle (dB)89
@ 70 mph cruise (dB)92

Test Driver Ratings & Comments

Acceleration commentsAfter noticing that the 6's engine is a bit soft at low rpm, we tried brake-torquing the engine to 2,000 and instantly shaved almost seven-tenths off the zero-to-60 time. From 2,000 to 5,000 rpm the engine builds power in a linear fashion before catching a second wind and additional thrust somewhere around 5,100 rpm, with an associated engine growl that is quite pleasant to the enthusiast ear. A manually-shifted 6 "kept on the boil" would likely accelerate much quicker. We did notice a lag between the instant we manually upshifted the automatic and when it actually shifted up, but downshifts came fast and smooth when the shifter was placed in manual mode.
Braking ratingNo Data
Braking commentsWith less than one foot in variation during our three braking runs it would seem the Mazda 6 is both a capable and consistent stopper. Pedal feel is firm and easy to modulate, but under maximum braking the ABS seems to cycle rather slowly. This creates a bit more tire chatter than in cars like the Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, but at 120 feet, consistently, from 60 to zero mph, we're not going to complain.
Handling ratingNo Data
Handling commentsYou have to give up some things in the Mazda 6 (rear seat room, one-touch up driver's window, torque) in trade for this car's handling ability, but it does handle wonderfully. Steering feel is as good as any front driver and overall nimbleness beats the Accord, Camry, Altima and Passat. The car has rapid turn in and a balanced chassis with controlled body roll. This is a good thing because the engine's lack of torque made accelerating in the slalom a lost cause. The car was hitting redline in second gear but was too low in its rev band in third to create any thrust. The workaround? Carry all the speed you need from the first cone to the last, because any speed you lose you'll never get back. Thankfully, the Mazda's cat-like grace allowed this strategy to work. — Karl Brauer

Testing Conditions

Elevation (ft.)85

Fuel Consumption

EPA fuel economy (mpg)Auto / Manual 20/27
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)18

Dimensions & Capacities

Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)3,311
Length (in.)186.8
Width (in.)70.1
Height (in.)56.7
Wheelbase (in.)105.3
Legroom, front (in.)42.3
Legroom, rear (in.)36.5
Headroom, front (in.)38.7
Headroom, rear (in.)37.1
Seating capacity5
Cargo volume (cu-ft)15.2
Max. cargo volume, seats folded (cu-ft)15


Bumper-to-bumper4 years / 50,000 miles
Powertrain4 years / 50,000 miles
Corrosion5 years / unlimited miles
Roadside assistance3 years / 50,000 miles
Free scheduled maintenanceNot available


Front airbagsStandard
Side airbagsOptional
Head airbagsOptional
Antilock brakesOptional
Electronic brake enhancementsStandard
Traction controlOptional
Stability controlNot available
Rollover protectionNot available
Emergency assistance systemNot available
NHTSA crash test, driverExcellent
NHTSA crash test, passengerExcellent
NHTSA crash test, side frontAverage
NHTSA crash test, side rearGood
NHTSA rollover resistanceExcellent

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