The 2019 Mazda 3 Reviews Are In, And It's Fair To Say Critics Are Enamoured
January 28 2019, Centennial Mazda
Car reviewers are falling head-over-heels in love with the all-new, fourth-generation 2019 Mazda 3.
In order to give every publication a fair shot following the company's first drive event in southern California, Mazda instituted a publication ban on reviews until the very end of last week. But at 12:01 AM on Sunday, January 27, the reviews began to pour in.
They're all positive. They're all resoundingly positive. They're all unmistakeably positive. Phrases like, "a Porsche-like obsession to detail," aren't generally associated with sub-$20,000 cars.
We've compiled links to nine such reviews below, along with some of the highlights. Remember, most reviews are geared toward the U.S. market, where model lineups (such as manual transmission availability) and pricing may differ.
Car And Driver: "The cumulative effect is that the 3's interior exudes a quality similar to that of high-end audio equipment or cars that costs tens of thousands more than the new 3's base price."
Driving.ca: "Also worthy of note is the quality of the sound system - pointing the tweeters and mid-range speakers at the riders, and moving the bass speakers from the doors to a spot by the A-pillar kick panel, eliminates the usual buzz and distortion when the sound system is cranked. And this is the base system. The up-level Bose unit sounds even better."
Motor Trend: "Ride quality is simply exceptional. Even on the harshest potholes and bumps, occupants are completely isolated from the impacts. Yet despite that isolation from impacts and noise, the Mazda3 remains remarkably engaging to drive. The Mazda3's steering is direct and progressive, with a hint of lightness to it that brings the Miata to mind."
Autoblog: "The instant the Mazda3 reaches the windy roads, it glides in like an otter diving into the sea. Lively and graceful, it dances along a ribbon of asphalt more naturally than any compact sedan we've driven since the advent of drive-by-wire. The steering is not only direct and true, but possesses an extraordinary ability to maintain trajectory. From the moment you turn in, you never need to make adjustments to the steering wheel until the front tires are straight again. The car goes exactly where you intend, always."
Car Magazine: "Specifically Los Angeles Crest Highway, a ribbon of tarmac that meanders up the mountainside, in a manner most unbecoming of US roads. It's twisty, brilliantly so, and the Mazda 3 reveals its beautifully balanced chassis, fine steering weighting and feel and easy, crisp gearshift."
AutoTrader.ca: "With the new rear spec intended to reduce the reliance on unpredictable bushings for compliance, the Mazda3's poise when pressed to carve like an Olympic slalom skier was near-flawless. In fact, I never once heard the tires complain in either version of the car, an indication of just how far outside of its limits I was able to remain while still effectively pushing into the potential of the suspension tune."
Automobile: "Not only the content, but also the level of refinement is marvelous-a clear indicator of those upmarket intentions. "If a button feels cheap, you don't have any sense of pride in the operation of the product," said Matthew Valbuena, Mazda engineer for human-machine interface. Be assured that nothing inside feels or looks cheap."
Motor1: "The latest Mazda3 also shows a clear effort to enhance the model's sense of luxury inside and out, and to deliver a more compelling value proposition over the outgoing vehicle; a multi-pronged approach which sees significant revisions in everything from the audio system design to the bonding methods in body structure."
CNET: "This sort of linear "the car moves as you do" nature extends to the throttle and braking, as well. Mazda officials say they even studied leg movements and worked to tie throttle response to muscle effort, all for the sake of more progressive power delivery."