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I have owned a 2006 Mazda 3 i 5-speed manual and will soon be shopping for a new Mazda 3. I took a test drive in the 6-speed manual Sport and liked it. It had even more responsive steering, shorter throw shifter, and of course all the extras mine didn't have (I had crank windows, no power locks or keyless entry, or cruise control, etc.). And the Skyactiv Engine's fuel efficiency is impressive. Before my 2006 Mazda, I had a Jeep Wrangler that was also a manual trans. I enjoy the control and feel of a manual, and although I at one point was on the fence about maybe getting an automatic this time, I think I've settled on staying with manual. In the test drive I didn't get up to higher speeds, and was intrigued at how the layout of the gears was (pushing in the shifter for getting to reverse was cool). I'm very familiar with how my 5-speed drives, but I was wondering what the typical speeds were when shifting with the 6-speed was. It seems like a lot of shifting, lol. Do you only use 6th gear at "speeding" speeds (65mph+)?
 

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I have owned a 2006 Mazda 3 i 5-speed manual and will soon be shopping for a new Mazda 3. I took a test drive in the 6-speed manual Sport and liked it. It had even more responsive steering, shorter throw shifter, and of course all the extras mine didn't have (I had crank windows, no power locks or keyless entry, or cruise control, etc.). And the Skyactiv Engine's fuel efficiency is impressive. Before my 2006 Mazda, I had a Jeep Wrangler that was also a manual trans. I enjoy the control and feel of a manual, and although I at one point was on the fence about maybe getting an automatic this time, I think I've settled on staying with manual. In the test drive I didn't get up to higher speeds, and was intrigued at how the layout of the gears was (pushing in the shifter for getting to reverse was cool). I'm very familiar with how my 5-speed drives, but I was wondering what the typical speeds were when shifting with the 6-speed was. It seems like a lot of shifting, lol. Do you only use 6th gear at "speeding" speeds (65mph+)?
Uhh, it's going to be no different than any other car?

I don't think you should go for speed as much as you should go by RPM for shifting...
 

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I have owned a 2006 Mazda 3 i 5-speed manual and will soon be shopping for a new Mazda 3. I took a test drive in the 6-speed manual Sport and liked it. It had even more responsive steering, shorter throw shifter, and of course all the extras mine didn't have (I had crank windows, no power locks or keyless entry, or cruise control, etc.). And the Skyactiv Engine's fuel efficiency is impressive. Before my 2006 Mazda, I had a Jeep Wrangler that was also a manual trans. I enjoy the control and feel of a manual, and although I at one point was on the fence about maybe getting an automatic this time, I think I've settled on staying with manual. In the test drive I didn't get up to higher speeds, and was intrigued at how the layout of the gears was (pushing in the shifter for getting to reverse was cool). I'm very familiar with how my 5-speed drives, but I was wondering what the typical speeds were when shifting with the 6-speed was. It seems like a lot of shifting, lol. Do you only use 6th gear at "speeding" speeds (65mph+)?
I usually shift around 2.5-3k around town. I cruise around town in third or fourth below 40. Highway is definitely 6th. 5th I skip sometimes but it is also useful for a hill when going like 50-60.
 

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The manual has shifting points in it. You should check them out, then just drive it and see where you personally would prefer shifting at.
 

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I will cruise around in 6th around 50 MPH for awesome gas mileage (it will be around 1.8-2k rpms in 6). That being said I might still be in 4th getting on the highway if I need to merge into traffic up a hill or just need some power. A very rare 3rd even if not going too fast but you're getting close to red-line at that point and I don't like to beat on my car. Then once acceleration isn't needed you just click it over to 6th. I will say the 6-4 downshift on the highway feels slow, I tend to just bump it up into 5th if I need to accelerate (hard enough that 6 feels weak), and then bump it back into 4th if I really need it.

As people have said it's mostly a personal feel thing.
 

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Accelerating I will be in 6th at 50-55mph. But cruising 35 mph is 6th.
It has two overdrives.
53-54 mph at 2k rpm in 6th.

I skip shift alot. 1-3-5-6 or 2-4-6.
 

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I usually shift at around 2,500-3,000 around town. Around 3,500 merging onto the freeway. I'll usually go 1-4, skip 5th, and go to 6th in 35mph zones. I'll cruise in 5th for 25 - 35 mph zones.

Anyone else feel like 1st to 2nd is a little clunky at times? There is a clanging noise when shifting some of the time. Rest of the gears are quiet.

Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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I'm cruising in 6th above ~42 MPH.
 

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I'm cruising in 6th above ~42 MPH.
Same. This seems to be the sweet spot. If you need the change speed, of course, you'll want to change gears. I spend alot of time in 5th because of the hills I deal with.

I find I actually get better gas mileage when I'm not forced to drive slower. Except for freeway speeds, other cars seem to choose speeds my Mazda just doesn't like on the instant fuel readout. That's really weird. My Nissan was all 'the slower you went, the better gas mileage' until down past 20mph.

-Crissa
 
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