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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, I've been driving for a week on Mazda 3 2.0L Skyactiv hatchback I-Touring 6spd.

Pros: in driving feel
- VERY good gas mileage
- Smooth shifting feel
- Very forgiving clutch
- very neutral cornering feel for a front drive.

Cons: (as I perceive them)
- No torque or power below 3500 rpm => impact: if I want to accelerate, I shift up at about 4500 rpm or higher, so the next gear would let me feel the pull rather than suddenly feel like I am at stand still.

- All the gears feel tall. I've been downshift one gear lower from the gear I am used in other manuals I drove. For example, at 40 mph, I am used to feeling the car accelerate a little in 4th gear, but not in Mazda 3. I usually downshift to 3rd if I want to accelerate. I don't even consider accelerating at 5th or 6th. They are for cruising only.

- The last Mazda 3 I test drove about 3 years ago had very short gears (and suffered in mpg), but it sure was fun to drive!

I wonder how the gear ratio compares to Miata... Does anyone have a dyno graph or the power band for Mazda 3 2.0L Skyactiv? Really curious to know where the Zoom Zoom went.
 

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Okay, I've been driving for a week on Mazda 3 2.0L Skyactiv hatchback I-Touring 6spd.

Pros: in driving feel
- VERY good gas mileage
- Smooth shifting feel
- Very forgiving clutch
- very neutral cornering feel for a front drive.

Cons: (as I perceive them)
- No torque or power below 3500 rpm => impact: if I want to accelerate, I shift up at about 4500 rpm or higher, so the next gear would let me feel the pull rather than suddenly feel like I am at stand still.

- All the gears feel tall. I've been downshift one gear lower from the gear I am used in other manuals I drove. For example, at 40 mph, I am used to feeling the car accelerate a little in 4th gear, but not in Mazda 3. I usually downshift to 3rd if I want to accelerate. I don't even consider accelerating at 5th or 6th. They are for cruising only.

- The last Mazda 3 I test drove about 3 years ago had very short gears (and suffered in mpg), but it sure was fun to drive!

I wonder how the gear ratio compares to Miata... Does anyone have a dyno graph or the power band for Mazda 3 2.0L Skyactiv? Really curious to know where the Zoom Zoom went.


I agreed with you until you got to the tall gear talk. I can accellerate in 6th gear at 40mph without any issues, so saying you can't use 4th to accellerate at 40mph is just plain ridiculous. I hit just over 7 seconds 0-60 times which is pretty damn good for a 40mpg car IMO. You just have to know how to drive it, give it time.
 

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I have no answer for your post except that it explains why Mazda reduced the weight of the 2014's by nearly 500 lbs. To get the zoom-zoom back.
 

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I have no answer for your post except that it explains why Mazda reduced the weight of the 2014's by nearly 500 lbs. To get the zoom-zoom back.
Could you direct me to source of this by chance? I had heard weight reductions, but more on the order of 100 lbs and not 500 lbs. That would be sweet lol.

For the OP, if i want a lot of zip I always downshift to that upper rpm range. That being said I rarely need it cruising around town, just makes for some fun merging on to the highway on occasion. I guess it's nothing that bothers me, but I come from a number of slower 4 cylinders that would get comparable gas mileage.
 

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My bad, the MS3 weight 3200. The present 2.0 only weighs 3000. So the 2014 doesn't weight that much less than the present model..
 

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Discussion Starter #6
... I can accellerate in 6th gear at 40mph without any issues...
Sure, I can get the car to go up in speed in 6th gear if I have the patience of a grandma while all the other cars pass you.

What I meant by "accelerate" is if you push down on the throttle, you should immediately feel the surge of the car pulling forward. At least, I don't feel that at 40 mph in 4th gear. I usually to downshift to 3rd to get it moving.
 

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I agreed with you until you got to the tall gear talk. I can accellerate in 6th gear at 40mph without any issues, so saying you can't use 4th to accellerate at 40mph is just plain ridiculous. I hit just over 7 seconds 0-60 times which is pretty damn good for a 40mpg car IMO. You just have to know how to drive it, give it time.
It sure is. Our 2.5 auto hits 60 in 7
seconds and only gets 27 mpg.




My bad, the MS3 weight 3200. The present 2.0 only weighs 3000. So the 2014 doesn't weight that much less than the present model..
That would be 3280 not 3200. Just felt like correcting you. :D
 

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I know and it's all in the front. I feel it every time I throw the car into a turn. This must be correct warlord day. :yes:
 
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These motors are actually kinda torquey for a 4 cylinder. The gearing is what you have to get used to. You have to know what gear to be in to do what you want it to do lol. It took me a while but I got it down now. Forget going down one gear. Usually its at least 2. Just the other day my friend and I were driving around town and I had to accelerate quickly so I dropped it down from 6th to 3rd and it just took off like I had never felt it before. Even my friend was surprised and I told him yeah I didnt know it could do that either haha

If you want a fun motor, try a 4age. Those have absolutely no power under 4k rpm but they love to rev
 

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Have you ever had a 6 speed car? I ask because this is my first and that was part of the problem. I used to get lost in the gears when I first got it since I was used to having only 5 and I definitely wasnt used to the revs dropping down so low and still being drivable lol

Just keep driving. Youll get it figured out eventually
 

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I thought it was sort of a universal truth that cars with great gas mileage like the 3 aren't going to blow you away with power. it is kind of deceiving because it looks like a very sporty car, and it some ways it is. Although, until I become very wealthy I'll take fuel efficiency over power.
 

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While I cannot comment on the new 2.0/2.5 SKY I can comment on the outgoing 2.0/2.3/2.5 MZR series.

Every MZR I have driven is soft until you hit 3k-3.5k RPM even my "big" 2.5. Now from a standstill 1st is great, 2nd is ok, 3rd and above you definitely need 3k+ RPM to move in any expedient fashion. The current MZR 2.5 can move quite nicely if you are not afraid to wind it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
...Have you ever had a 6 speed car?...
Drove 2010 Kia Forte 2.4L 6spd for a while. Usually downshifted from 6th to 4th on the highway to pass. Rest of the manuals I drove were 5 spds. I will get used to the Mazda 3 in a short while.
 

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I thought it was sort of a universal truth that cars with great gas mileage like the 3 aren't going to blow you away with power. it is kind of deceiving because it looks like a very sporty car, and it some ways it is. Although, until I become very wealthy I'll take fuel efficiency over power.
In most cases, you're right. I'd add that the Japanese and really Mazda seem to make the sacrifice more so than the Europeans or even the Americans.

Look at the GTI or some of the BMW engines these days. The GTI has 200hp and the BMW's have well over that, yet they are getting 30~33mpg on the highway. Even the previous gen BMW 335 with 300hp was rated at 27~28mpg. That is close to what my 2.5L is rated and it only cranks out a measly 167hp...although I easily hit 30mpg on the highway. The Focus ST is another example with 247hp and still manages a 32mpg rating. These are extreame examples, but even the Civic SI gets great gas mileage and is still fun to drive.

Fuel economy is important to me, but if the car only has a hamster under the hood and puts me to sleep while I'm driving it, I'll pass and move along to something that might cost me a buck or two more at the pump yet still remindes me I'm alive when I get behind the wheel.
 

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Most speed owners will tell you they get nearly 30 highway. Stock speed has 263 hp. I get right about 30 on the highway and I average 24-25 around town.
 

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In most cases, you're right. I'd add that the Japanese and really Mazda seem to make the sacrifice more so than the Europeans or even the Americans.

Look at the GTI or some of the BMW engines these days. The GTI has 200hp and the BMW's have well over that, yet they are getting 30~33mpg on the highway. Even the previous gen BMW 335 with 300hp was rated at 27~28mpg. That is close to what my 2.5L is rated and it only cranks out a measly 167hp...although I easily hit 30mpg on the highway. The Focus ST is another example with 247hp and still manages a 32mpg rating. These are extreame examples, but even the Civic SI gets great gas mileage and is still fun to drive.

Fuel economy is important to me, but if the car only has a hamster under the hood and puts me to sleep while I'm driving it, I'll pass and move along to something that might cost me a buck or two more at the pump yet still remindes me I'm alive when I get behind the wheel.
But you have to figure in price as well, the VW and BMW you mentioned all start at above even the higher models of the Mazda3. You get what you pay for, and the Mazda3 is probably the best fun-to-drive car that you can get at that price. I'm sure Mazda could make it as powerful as those cars, but the price of course would go up.
 

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But you have to figure in price as well, the VW and BMW you mentioned all start at above even the higher models of the Mazda3. You get what you pay for, and the Mazda3 is probably the best fun-to-drive car that you can get at that price. I'm sure Mazda could make it as powerful as those cars, but the price of course would go up.
The BMW's are a lot more, but the others like the SI, GTI and ST are right in the running. For me I won't even look at a 2.0 and focus on Mazda's 2.5L hatch offerings with MT. When you do that, the Mazda3 comes in at around $24K MSRP. The GTI also starts at $24K as does the ST. These are all within a few hundred of each other and could probably be haggled into parity if you were trying to buy. The SI actually comes in at $23K. Those are some decent cars with far more power and better fuel economy. If you look at used cars you can get some great BMW's and Audi's in that range too.

In 2010, when I bought my 3, it was the best option for the price for me, and it's still entertaining to drive. However, there are lots of options now and even though the '14 looks to be a great car I don't know how it would stack up against the competition.

This is all based on MY priorities for a car. Everyone is different.
 

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While I cannot comment on the new 2.0/2.5 SKY I can comment on the outgoing 2.0/2.3/2.5 MZR series.

Every MZR I have driven is soft until you hit 3k-3.5k RPM even my "big" 2.5. Now from a standstill 1st is great, 2nd is ok, 3rd and above you definitely need 3k+ RPM to move in any expedient fashion. The current MZR 2.5 can move quite nicely if you are not afraid to wind it out.
I am not afraid and honestly shocked how fast the car gets up to speed at times. On the highway at 65 I can just squeeze the gas and I am doing 80. Mine is the 2.5 5AT. Car has 60K on it so it is nice and broken in. The new 14' with the 2.5 may be quite a rocket (relatively speaking Speed3 owners- LOL).
 
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