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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited by Moderator)
I wonder why the hatchbacks are more popular in the UK? Also why is there no "hatch release button" in the car cockpit unlike the trunk release button? Obviously this was by design, but why. It would have been nice, especially w/the slow lift of the hydraulic hatch door to have it open in advance. Any thoughts?
 

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Also why is there no "hatch release button" in the car cockpit unlike the trunk release button? Obviously this was by design, but why. It would have been nice, especially w/the slow lift of the hydraulic hatch door to have it open in advance. Any thoughts?
I did not know that the hatch would open by itself? You have to lift it manually don't you? The hydraulic struts just hold it up. There is just no need for a button inside the car. It is not terribly difficult to push the button and lift the hatch. That takes what, all of a second maybe......:dunno:
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited by Moderator)
I did not know that the hatch would open by itself? You have to lift it manually don't you? The hydraulic struts just hold it up. There is just no need for a button inside the car. It is not terribly difficult to push the button and lift the hatch. That takes what, all of a second maybe......:dunno:
The point is those seconds add up. With a trunk release button in the car, you press it and you get out of the car and the trunk is open and ready. With the M3 hatchback, there is not button. You get out and have to do all this manually and then wait another second for hydraulic release to do its thing or help it out. Why? What's the point? Do other hatchbacks behave this way?
 

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The point is those seconds add up. With a trunk release button in the car, you press it and you get out of the car and the trunk is open and ready. With the M3 hatchback, there is not button. You get out and have to do all this manually and then wait another second for hydraulic release to do its thing or help it out. Why? What's the point? Do other hatchbacks behave this way?
That is how it works generally. The hatch is actually quite heavy. Unless you have some sort of motor to raise the hatch, it is not going up by itself. A trunk lid weighs a couple pounds and you can have a spring assist lift to open it as in the Miata. With the heavy glass, wiper motor, etc it takes a good bit of doing not only to raise but to stay up. Those those hydraulic lift assist cylinders are there for that reason. Is it really that difficult to hit the button and lift the hatch? There is nothing to wait for, you lift it and up it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
That is how it works generally. The hatch is actually quite heavy. Unless you have some sort of motor to raise the hatch, it is not going up by itself. A trunk lid weighs a couple pounds and you can have a spring assist lift to open it as in the Miata. With the heavy glass, wiper motor, etc it takes a good bit of doing not only to raise but to stay up. Those those hydraulic lift assist cylinders are there for that reason. Is it really that difficult to hit the button and lift the hatch? T
Please see the attached. The Nissan Murano Hatchback does this w/no problem. I assume other hatchbacks do as well. There is a button in the car, on the keyfob and on the hatchbackl, all which can power it on. If powered in the car, it takes 5-7 seconds to fully open. Same thing for closing the hatchback. And the hatchback locks when it goes down and hits the mechanism. The person doesn't have to push it down. This all happens automatically. All of this is done w/out user/driver intervention other than pressing a button whether in the car or on the keyfob.

The system for opening the hatchback that Mazda has developed is poor industrial engineering, and in addtion runs roughshod over the need of people w/disabilities. Those with Parkinson's, a common afflication affecting hand movements, would benefit greatly by having a system like the Nissan Murano has. I have back problems. When I have to reach for that mechanism, I have to contort my back a little. It's also a complete waste of time and it's not good human to machine engineering. It's something Mazda completely overlooked similar to the inexplicable and ill-considered decision not to support Apple CarPlay, which the vast majority of car manufacturer's support. CarPlay provides real time traffic information, unlike the proprietary clunky interface in Mazda's Nav. Like the Dunlop OEM tires, these are dings on the car's features and are "penny-wise and pound foolish".

If Mazda really wants to transform itself into Mazda Premium, its needs to address probelms such as the above. See also this link. Pretty over top if you ask me.
 

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Please see the attached. The Nissan Murano Hatchback does this w/no problem. I assume other hatchbacks do as well. There is a button in the car, on the keyfob and on the hatchbackl, all which can power it on. If powered in the car, it takes 5-7 seconds to fully open. Same thing for closing the hatchback. And the hatchback locks when it goes down and hits the mechanism. The person doesn't have to push it down. This all happens automatically. All of this is done w/out user/driver intervention other than pressing a button whether in the car or on the keyfob.

The system for opening the hatchback that Mazda has developed is poor industrial engineering, and in addtion runs roughshod over the need of people w/disabilities. Those with Parkinson's, a common afflication affecting hand movements, would benefit greatly by having a system like the Nissan Murano has. I have back problems. When I have to reach for that mechanism, I have to contort my back a little. It's also a complete waste of time and it's not good human to machine engineering. It's something Mazda completely overlooked similar to the inexplicable and ill-considered decision not to support Apple CarPlay, which the vast majority of car manufacturer's support. CarPlay provides real time traffic information, unlike the proprietary clunky interface in Mazda's Nav. Like the Dunlop OEM tires, these are dings on the car's features and are "penny-wise and pound foolish".

If Mazda really wants to transform itself into Mazda Premium, its needs to address probelms such as the above. See also this link. Pretty over top if you ask me.
Your assumptions are quite wrong. The fact that you don't like it does not mean its designed badly. Quite the opposite in fact. Its designed very well for its intended use. Lift gates such as the one you are talking about are powered and require electric motors and linkages to raise the hatch. My wifes Chrylser van has power open/close doors all around, including the rear hatch. There are many expensive vehicles that have this feature.
Power lift gates add a lot of weight, complexity and cost, non of which are needed in the Mazda 3. Its not a luxury car, its an inexpensive econobox that happens to be bit sporty. If you don't like it, don't buy it. If you want a car that holds your hand and blows your nose for you, spend the $50k+ and buy one. For $20k its not going to happen. Its that simple.
I also have back issues, disk degeneration and continuing after effects from a couple serious accidents. I have no issues with the hatch as it is. It takes very little effort to push the button with one finger and raise it up as the vast majority of weight is carried by the lift assist cylinders.
The articles you linked to are irrelevant. The fact that the Mazda 3 is and has always been an inexpensive car does not change because Mazda might want to reposition itself at some point in the new car market. If Mazda does move upmarket of course the cars will need to change, and I am pretty sure the people who run the place are competent enough to recognize that. However, right now, Mazda is still a struggling low volume manufacturer producing affordable cars that happen to value driving experience over how many tv screens and switches they can cram into the dashboard.
As Walter Cronkite would have said- And thats the way it is.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Your assumptions are quite wrong. The fact that you don't like it does not mean its designed badly. Quite the opposite in fact. Its designed very well for its intended use. Lift gates such as the one you are talking about are powered and require electric motors and linkages to raise the hatch. My wifes Chrylser van has power open/close doors all around, including the rear hatch. There are many expensive vehicles that have this feature.
Power lift gates add a lot of weight, complexity and cost, non of which are needed in the Mazda 3. Its not a luxury car, its an inexpensive econobox that happens to be bit sporty. If you don't like it, don't buy it. If you want a car that holds your hand and blows your nose for you, spend the $50k+ and buy one. For $20k its not going to happen. Its that simple.
I also have back issues, disk degeneration and continuing after effects from a couple serious accidents. I have no issues with the hatch as it is. It takes very little effort to push the button with one finger and raise it up as the vast majority of weight is carried by the lift assist cylinders.
The articles you linked to are irrelevant. The fact that the Mazda 3 is and has always been an inexpensive car does not change because Mazda might want to reposition itself at some point in the new car market. If Mazda does move upmarket of course the cars will need to change, and I am pretty sure the people who run the place are competent enough to recognize that. However, right now, Mazda is still a struggling low volume manufacturer producing affordable cars that happen to value driving experience over how many tv screens and switches they can cram into the dashboard.
As Walter Cronkite would have said- And thats the way it is.
I see your point. Thanks for the detailed explanation. I have since learned that the Nissan Murano, which I just Googled, is an SUV, not a hatchback. That might also be relevant. Moreover to get the Power Liftgate, the MSRP starts at $37,300 which is 10K more than a Mazda w/GT with iActiveSense. FWIW, I would not call the Mazda 3, at the GT level, an econobox. It costs nearly 29K in that trim. It's advertised as a Grand Touring vehicle.

If I may, let me ask you a few questions. What exactly does the Mazda 3 hatchback have in terms of a liftgate? It doesn't sound like it has a "Power Liftgate". It has a hydraulic liftgate, to be sure, which allows it to go up gradually rather than "pop" open or require a lot of arm strength. It needs a hand-assist to make its way up once its unlocked.

A Power Liftgate, that some SUVs have, supplies the power to to this automatically, is that correct? and this "feature" adds a lot of weight (and cost). Even if cost was not an object, it would stiil add the weight and wreck havoc the main attributes of Mazda 3s handling? So its really a class of car thing. It's approriate on upscale CUVs/SUVs, but not on cars and hatchbacks focused on performance.

I should have been more measured in my tone and not made so many assumptions and instead posed them as questions. Sorry for the rant and I stand corrected.
 

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If I may, let me ask you a few questions. What exactly does the Mazda 3 hatchback have in terms of a liftgate? It doesn't sound like it has a "Power Liftgate". It has a hydraulic liftgate, to be sure, which allows it to go up gradually rather than "pop" open or require a lot of arm strength. It needs a hand-assist to make its way up once its unlocked.

A Power Liftgate, that some SUVs have, supplies the power to to this automatically, is that correct? and this "feature" adds a lot of weight (and cost). Even if cost was not an object, it would stiil add the weight and wreck havoc the main attributes of Mazda 3s handling? So its really a class of car thing. It's approriate on upscale CUVs/SUVs, but not on cars and hatchbacks focused on performance.

I should have been more measured in my tone and not made so many assumptions and instead posed them as questions. Sorry for the rant and I stand corrected.
The hatch is nothing more than a rear door that opens in a different direction just like the hood. It does not have a hydraulic lift gate per se, rather it has gas 2 struts like you would find holding up the hood in most newer cars. They do provide some lift assist and also keep the hatch from crashing down on your head.
Power lift gates are mostly electric, with various gear, cable or other types of linkages that both lift and close hatch. The weight comes in the form of electric motors and all the others parts needed to make it work. It adds up, and in some cars can be a lot of added weight which in turn cuts into performance and fuel economy. Maybe in a large car with plenty of power its not such a big deal, but in a smallish lightweight 4 cylinder car with less than 200hp it does make a huge difference.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The hatch is nothing more than a rear door that opens in a different direction just like the hood. It does not have a hydraulic lift gate per se, rather it has gas 2 struts like you would find holding up the hood in most newer cars. They do provide some lift assist and also keep the hatch from crashing down on your head.
Power lift gates are mostly electric, with various gear, cable or other types of linkages that both lift and close hatch. The weight comes in the form of electric motors and all the others parts needed to make it work. It adds up, and in some cars can be a lot of added weight which in turn cuts into performance and fuel economy. Maybe in a large car with plenty of power its not such a big deal, but in a smallish lightweight 4 cylinder car with less than 200hp it does make a huge difference.
Thanks for the edifying explanation. BTW, I only have 200 miles on my new Mazda 3 GT, but it's truly amazing and coming from a 1994 Subaru legacy w/200,000 miles, its a quantum leap forward.
 

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I :wub 1: my release buttons
Especially on the keyfob, it completes it
I saw a keyfob with just the unlock/lock/panic buttons and it looks naked and cheap <_<
 

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they call it a 5 door hatch for a reason. and just to clarify. the murano is not a hatchback. it is a medium to large SUV. you're comparing apples to oranges. no hatches i know of, even in the premium sector has an electronic liftgate. which is the feature you're referring to.

the design on electronic liftgate has been pretty selected to only SUVs. such as CX-9 which is under mazda, and most premium (think bmw merc audi SUVs.) its only not till 1-2 years ago that the feature started trickling down to sedans/hatch sector starting of with the new w205 C class Merc, from my knowledge. heck, a tarago/estima people mover has it, but you'd get the point in which that feature is for. Heck even my e90 m3 did not have a electronic tailgate. but as the feature trickles down, it could come down to sedan/hatch eventually, but right now, for the electronic liftgate, the cx-9 is your only option.
 

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I wonder why the hatchbacks are more popular in the UK? ..... Any thoughts?
I'm a UK member of this forum (which is far more useful than the UK Mazda Forum).

As far as the Mazda 3 sales in the UK is concerned, I dimly remember reading somewhere that about 20% of Mazda 3 sales are sedans (called fastbacks by Mazda UK) and 80% are hatchbacks. Possible reasons are that hatchbacks are generally more compact which is useful for our tighter parking spaces, hatchbacks are considered more versatile for carrying large loads and they generally attract a higher resale / trade in value. Personally, I hate hatchbacks!

The lower sales of the Mazda 3 sedan/fastback caused Mazda UK to drop the auto box option from the Mazda 3 Fastback range last year. I found this really annoying since I was about to buy one!

Anyway, I've since waited for the updated Mazda 3 and should take delivery of a Mazda 3 2.0 manual (no choice) sedan/fastback next week.
 

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The hatchback is way more useful than the sedan. I've grabbed countless Ikea boxes, including a PAX set that measured about 96 inches long by 36 inches wide (obviously had to use straps and kept the hatch open). It's trivial to fit a flatscreen TV in the back, and it's a boon if you have a dog. Sedans in general are losing popularity in North America as CUVs (which are essentially large, lifted hatchbacks) have taken their place.
 

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It is a problem for me, where I live there are security checks at most parking lots, many times the security do not speak English, are not familiar with the car and quite surprised I can not open the hatch from the drivers seat.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
they call it a 5 door hatch for a reason. and just to clarify. the murano is not a hatchback. it is a medium to large SUV. you're comparing apples to oranges. no hatches i know of, even in the premium sector has an electronic liftgate. which is the feature you're referring to.

the design on electronic liftgate has been pretty selected to only SUVs. such as CX-9 which is under mazda, and most premium (think bmw merc audi SUVs.) its only not till 1-2 years ago that the feature started trickling down to sedans/hatch sector starting of with the new w205 C class Merc, from my knowledge. heck, a tarago/estima people mover has it, but you'd get the point in which that feature is for. Heck even my e90 m3 did not have a electronic tailgate. but as the feature trickles down, it could come down to sedan/hatch eventually, but right now, for the electronic liftgate, the cx-9 is your only option.
I conceded as much re:the Apple and Oranges comparisoin w/the Murano. See my other post. It appears there are no hatchbacks on the market with a power liftgate - see http://cars.axlegeeks.com/d/x/Power-Trunk_-_Liftgate - filter by hatchback.

What I'd like to see is a button in the car cockpit, which merely simulates the finger press on the liftgate to open it. It doesn't actually propel the liftgate up; it merely saves you a single step from putting your finger under the hatch door to press the button. The user still has to start the liftgate up on its upper ascent. This is similar to the button for popping the hood. You still have to lift the hood.

Secondly, when the user pulls the hatch door (liftgate) down, it will autolock when it finishes its decent. Currently, you have to take an extra step to push it to lock it in place. Whether these seemingly minor adjustments warrant the additional cost or impose (unacceptable) added weight is an open question.

I agree w/those who say that any substantial increase in weight to attendant to adding such a is unacceptable (regardless of cost).
 

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What I'd like to see is a button in the car cockpit, which merely simulates the finger press on the liftgate to open it. It doesn't actually propel the liftgate up; it merely saves you a single step from putting your finger under the hatch door to press the button. The user still has to start the liftgate up on its upper ascent. This is similar to the button for popping the hood. You still have to lift the hood.

Secondly, when the user pulls the hatch door (liftgate) down, it will autolock when it finishes its decent. Currently, you have to take an extra step to push it to lock it in place. Whether these seemingly minor adjustments warrant the additional cost or impose (unacceptable) added weight is an open question.

I agree w/those who say that any substantial increase in weight to attendant to adding such a is unacceptable (regardless of cost).
When you open the hatch, the button is right there. There is no "extra step" (?) required. Put your hand under the lip, your finger is right on the button, lift up. Its not at all like opening the hood. Closing is just as simple. Reach up with one hand, push the hatch down and it closes. No extra time consuming (?) steps involved. You are making this waaaay more complicated than it is.
 

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Please see the attached. The Nissan Murano Hatchback does this w/no problem. I assume other hatchbacks do as well. There is a button in the car, on the keyfob and on the hatchbackl, all which can power it on. If powered in the car, it takes 5-7 seconds to fully open. Same thing for closing the hatchback. And the hatchback locks when it goes down and hits the mechanism. The person doesn't have to push it down. This all happens automatically. All of this is done w/out user/driver intervention other than pressing a button whether in the car or on the keyfob.

The system for opening the hatchback that Mazda has developed is poor industrial engineering, and in addtion runs roughshod over the need of people w/disabilities. Those with Parkinson's, a common afflication affecting hand movements, would benefit greatly by having a system like the Nissan Murano has. I have back problems. When I have to reach for that mechanism, I have to contort my back a little. It's also a complete waste of time and it's not good human to machine engineering. It's something Mazda completely overlooked similar to the inexplicable and ill-considered decision not to support Apple CarPlay, which the vast majority of car manufacturer's support. CarPlay provides real time traffic information, unlike the proprietary clunky interface in Mazda's Nav. Like the Dunlop OEM tires, these are dings on the car's features and are "penny-wise and pound foolish".

If Mazda really wants to transform itself into Mazda Premium, its needs to address probelms such as the above. See also this link. Pretty over top if you ask me.
I've only seen power liftgates on luxury or near-luxury vehicles. It is a convenience item at extra cost, at least here in the states. The only thing I want is a button to crack open the hatch, instead of constantly going out and opening it for my parents who can't find the rubber button. But to expect power opening hatch at this pricepoint is currently a little farfetch'ed.

It's not poor design. Hatch's have always been like this. I find the hatch pretty easy to open and close, and if it's too high up like it is for some people, there should be a way to have a tie rope installed.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The only thing I want is a button to crack open the hatch, instead of constantly going out and opening it for my parents who can't find the rubber button. But to expect power opening hatch at this pricepoint is currently a little farfetch'ed.
Yes, exactly. Applies equally, even more so, to people w/the Parkinsons and similar disabilities.

It's not poor design. Hatch's have always been like this.
Just because something has always been that way doesn't make it a great design. "Poor design", sure that's an overstatement. Mediocre, thoughtless design, per the point you made above, as it applies to not having a button in the car for your parents, yes.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
When you open the hatch, the button is right there. There is no "extra step" (?) required. Put your hand under the lip, your finger is right on the button, lift up. Its not at all like opening the hood. Closing is just as simple. Reach up with one hand, push the hatch down and it closes. No extra time consuming (?) steps involved. You are making this waaaay more complicated than it is.
Per Hua's post: "The only thing I want is a button to crack open the hatch, instead of constantly going out and opening it for my parents who can't find the rubber button."

That's all I'm asking for. It's a reasonable request. Even though I know roughly where the button is, I often have to fish around for it.
 

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I stick a piece of velcro, the hard pokey part, on the button so when you swipe your hand around that area you'll feel it. Helped my parents locate the button :D
 
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