(written by my husband) I just spent an exciting week driving a 2013 Mazda3 in place of my usual commuter. My wife was away in Hawaii for the week and I found the opportunity to buzz around in a bright red fun. The Mazda3 is stylish, economical and functional. The week included a daily commute of ½ hour, a drop off/pick up at the airport as well as the routine taxi service to and from dance classes and baseball practice for the kids.
Fuel economy was definitely noticed and appreciated. Cruising 400 miles on ¾ of the 14.5 gallon tank was impressive and lived up to the claims of 40 mpg for highway driving. The Mazda3 has been designed from the ground up with what they call Skyactiv technology. In their quest to reduce fuel consumption and emissions without compromising driving performance Mazda’s engineers have gone through the engine, transmission and chassis to squeeze as much energy out of a drop of gas as possible without compromising performance. The 3 is a sporty responsive fun drive that performed beyond my expectations.
Our trip to the airport revealed just how spacious the trunk of the 3 was. No problem fitting the large suitcases and carry-ons with room to spare. The early morning drive allowed us to make use of the heated front seats, and the TomTom navigation system accurately showed the traffic along the route. Not one to typically rely on GPS for navigation, I found myself actually impressed with the system when I used it to help me find alternate routes to a job site that was blocked by construction detours. All the while the 265 watt Boise sound system with Sirius XM, Bluetooth etc. was awesome, not to mention the sunroof to remind me why I love living in California!
Another feature that was welcome was the advanced keyless entry and start system. Never before have I realized what a pain it is to have to dig my keys out of my pockets while my hands are full of groceries or baseball gear. Being able to just walk up to the car and open it, sit down and push start with the key never leaving my pocket has me wondering how much time I’ve wasting picking up the coins and other items that daily fall out of my pocket when rummaging around for keys.
For a family of 5 the Mazda3 is right at the minimum required size to even consider. Yet we comfortably fit in the car and there was plenty of leg room for all yet any trip longer that an hour inevitably ended up with some “keep your hands/legs to yourself”. While probably too small to consider as a primary vehicle for the family, the performance, style and fuel economy would make it an ideal 2nd car. Perfect for the commute and the daily grind, with enough room for the kids when necessary and great looking for a night out on the town with the wife. I have to say, red may not be our first choice just because it’s known to stand out on the road whether you’re abiding by the speed laws or not.
Upon return from her trip, my wife got a day to enjoy driving the Mazda3 and she found that being connected and charged is always important for her job as well as for entertainment on road trips. The center console held a USB port and included cord to charge her phone (and the kids i-devices), drive hands-free, and listen to her favorite channels on the Pandora connection straight through the car!
The Mazda3 is a smart, responsible fun car that will be enjoyed by many. Mazda has produced a durable quality product with innovative ideas and appealing style that a prospective car buyer should definitely consider.
Car was offered on a week’s loan, all opinions are our own.