The hatchback version of the Mazda3 which contains more storage space and other interior improvements to enhance the luxury feel. The Mazda3 was first introduced in 2004 and quickly received critical and commercial success. For 2007 the Mazda3 has undergone minor improvements and upgrades, mainly on the interior with more features coming standard. The biggest change is the introduction of a performance oriented model named the Mazdaspeed3, which is based off of the Mazda 3 Hatchback model. What's special about the Mazda3 is its global design process with a body developed by Volvo, electronics from Ford, with engine design/production and overall tuning happening at Mazda in Japan. The Mazda 3 also comes in a 4-door sedan model. Mazda positions the 3 to compete in the compact commuter car segment which contains the Honda Civic and Nissan Sentra.
The hatchback model of the Mazda3 features the more powerful 2.3 liter engine standard. The larger engine is 4 cylinders and outputs 156 horsepower at 6500RPM. A 5 speed manual transmission is standard with 5 speed automatic available as an option. The Mazdaspeed3 has a substantially more powerful turbocharged engine that produces 263 horsepower.
94 cubic feet of space accommodates 5 passengers including the driver. On the storage side the hatchback the hatchback there is 17.1 cubic feet, and with the seats folded flat the storage space increases to 43.8 cubic feet.
Everything that comes on the hatchback Sport model which is the base model, comes standard on the other models unless specifically upgraded to something better. For full listing of the features and differences between the various trims, see the official Mazda site.
Mazda 3 Sport ($18,175) - 17 inch all season tires are standard, as well as power mirrows, windows and locks. Four speaker audio system with steering wheel controls and auxiliary input are also standard. On the safety side front airbags and anti-lock brakes are standard. Side torso bags are not available, and side head curtain bags are optional.
Mazda 3 Touring ($18,920) - Upgrades safety features to include side torso and head air bags standard, as well as stability control and brake assist. Other luxury features upgraded include a better sound system (six speakers).
Mazda 3 Grand Touring ($20,390) - All the upgrades of the Touring model with more luxury upgrades such as a navigation system, automatic climate control and LED tail lights.
Mazdaspeed3 Sport ($22,240) - The standard safety features of the Touring with upgraded wheels coming in at 18 inches.
Mazdaspeed3 Grand Touring ($23,955) - Adds more luxury features to the sport model with rain-sensing windshield wipers and a navigational system.
Front crash test - Good
Side impact test (no side airbags) - Poor
National Highway Safety Traffic Association (NHTSA)
Front crash driver's side - 4 stars
Front crash passenger's side - 4 stars
Side crash front seat - 3 stars
Side crash rear seat - 3 stars
Rollover rating - 4 stars