The Mazda3 is the second most popular car in the Mazda lineup, having sold 64,638 units in 2018. The 2019 Mazda3 has been refreshed for this year and boasts being “all new.”
The “3” is powered by a 2.5-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine paired with a conventional “crisp shifting” 6-speed automatic transmission. The engine produces 186 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 186 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,000 rpm. The fuel economy is rated at 29/34 mpg city/highway.
This sub-compact is a segment leader. Mazda3 is highlighted by the 2019 Premium Package that adds leather seats, active driving display, and adaptive front lighting system.
The center console has a storage bin and a cup holder that can be used without having to open the armrest lid. However, the lid is rather thinly constructed. If you place your hand on it for support when entering the vehicle it tends to bend.
The 8.8-inch color display is the center-piece of the Mazda Connect infotainment system that features AM/FM, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, HD Radio, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. Control is primarily through the large HMI Commander dial behind the gear selector. The Premium Package also swaps out the standard 8-speaker audio system with Bose 12-speaker premium sound system.
There can be a learning curve when juggling for Bluetooth hands-free, cruise control, and trip computer on the steering wheel mounted controls.
Standard auto on/off headlights, daytime running lights, rain-sensing windshield wipers, side mirrors with turn lamps, and shark fin antenna are just some of the nice features. They all play a role in the ensemble of the vehicles dress.
The driver enjoys heated 8-way power adjustable leather seating with 2-position memory. Leather is also found on steering wheel and shift knob as additional luxury accents.
One area that needs improvement is the back seat’s lack of knee and foot room. But there is ample storage in the trunk for luggage or gear.
I was truly amazed at the standard safety features included in the Premium Package. Advanced active safety tech includes Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Smart Brake Assist, Mazda Radar Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keep Assist, and Driver Attention Alert, and Tire Pressure Monitor.
Rearview camera is standard even in the base model, and it helps tremendously in improving safety.
The ride and noise were greatly improved over previous models. The Premium “3” comes with eye-catching 18-inch alloy wheels. Electric power-assist steering and G-Vectoring Control Plus provide crisp handling response, regardless of traffic, construction issues, or weather conditions.
The MSRP for a Mazda3 spec’ed with the Premium Package is $26,500.
This is absolutely a great first car, whether you are single or a new couple. It has a very competitive price, excellent mileage, and holds its resale value.
3-year/36,000-mile New Vehicle Limited Warranty.
5-year/60,000-mile Limited Powertrain Warranty.
3-year/36,000-mile 24/7 Roadside Assistance Program
5-year/unlimited mileage Body Rust-Through Warranty
Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or email@example.com.