2021 Mazda3 Hatchback review: Stylish and fun, no turbo required

Soul crimson is a deep, rich shade.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

The massive deal for the 2021 Mazda3 is the addition of a new turbo engine. Roadshow’s Andrew Krok recently¬†analyzed the 2021 Mazda3 and it seems very excellent, but not all people is looking for a massive turbo punch. Fortunately, even with out a wallop of electric power, the Mazda3 is however actually, actually excellent.


  • Really entertaining to push
  • Advanced styling
  • Handbook transmission however provided
  • Obtainable all-wheel push

Don’t Like

  • Lackluster infotainment
  • Very poor gas financial state
  • Very poor rear visibility

You can purchase the 2021 Mazda3 as a sedan or hatchback, in foundation S, Select, Desired or Top quality trims. Front-wheel push is conventional, but all-wheel push is available for an further $1,400.

No subject how you slice it, the Mazda3 appears to be like wonderful. I prefer the swoopy lines and bulbous butt of the hatchback to the sedan’s a lot more staid form, but even in foundation form, this automobile appears to be like a hundred% better than a Honda Civic, Nissan Sentra or Toyota Corolla. Of class, the sloping roofline and thick C-pillars necessarily mean the hatchback would not have the ideal rear sightlines, and cargo room falls driving the Mazda’s competitors, much too. The 2021 Mazda3 hatch has just about twenty cubic feet of room with its rear seats up, but the Honda Civic goes massive with twenty five.seven cubic feet.

Within, the layout is sparse and clear. My tester will come with a black inside — form of drab, not my preferred — but “greige” or dark crimson shade strategies are also available. The supplies are all of fantastic top quality and the driver’s seat cradles my hindquarters in lumbar-supported plushness. Over-all, the Mazda3 undoubtedly feels a lot more upscale than its competitors.

Regretably, the Mazda Link infotainment procedure is a little bit of a drag. There is an 8.8-inch display, but it would not respond to touch. All inputs ought to be manufactured making use of a dial on the centre stack or by voice. To enter an address in the embedded navigation procedure I have to click the wheel to just about every person selection and letter or say out loud in which I want to go. Seems straightforward plenty of, but if I use my voice, the procedure spits out a few options, and I have to hold out for the Mazda lady to go through the entire address back again prior to I accept or reject. I can’t just use the dial to say of course and get on with my everyday living. In other words, once I am in voice command, I am in voice command for the whole approach, which can make making use of the procedure further-slow. The excellent information is that Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are conventional so you aren’t forced into making use of the native procedure. Besides, Google Maps and Waze are usually better than an automaker’s embedded procedure.

The black inside is form of drab.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

The 2021 Mazda3 sedan has a new 2.-liter foundation engine with a hundred and fifty five horsepower, but hatchback versions only arrive with the upgraded 2.five-liter I4. This engine generates 186 hp and 186 pound-feet of torque, and even though most Mazda3s use a six-velocity automated transmission, a six-velocity guide is available, but only on the major trim and only with entrance-wheel push. Mazda’s i-Activesense suite of driving aids is conventional on the hatchback, which consists of adaptive cruise command, lane-keeping help, lane-departure warning, blind-place monitoring and automated substantial beams.

Mazda always prioritizes driver engagement higher than a lot of other points, and the Mazda3 undoubtedly holds its personal on a twisty road. This isn’t really a quick automobile, but it is a single you can safely push on public roadways with out hitting ridiculous speeds. The throttle presents a immediate reaction to inputs and the transmission is content to dangle out in the higher aspect of the rev selection to make the most of the by natural means aspirated engine’s electric power. Mazda does a wonderful occupation at setting up its electric electric power steering, much too. The excess weight is best, the reaction immediate and it provides up a lot more suggestions than any other automobile at this price tag.

G-Vectoring Control Moreover is conventional on all Mazda3 hatchbacks and it is a delicate little bit of engineering that can make a massive big difference in how the automobile handles. The Mazda3’s engine cuts electric power just a little bit at transform-in, shifting the excess weight forward and expanding traction on the turning wheels up entrance. In all-wheel push versions, the rear axle is disconnected at the exact time. Then on exit, the Mazda3 will brake the outside entrance wheel and push electric power back again to the rear for a tidier line. It seems challenging, but it all occurs in the history. All I experience is the automobile carving backroads with critical poise and I can actually keep my momentum up on winding roadways.

The hatchback appears to be like wonderful but it isn’t really as spacious as a Honda Civic.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

The Mazda3 hatch with all-wheel push returns an EPA-believed merged gas rating of 27 miles per gallon, which puts it around the base of the class — though it is worthy of noting most other compact hatches don’t have all-wheel push. The Toyota Corolla hatchback with an automated transmission returns 35 mpg merged and the Honda Civic hatch can get as substantial as 34 mpg merged dependent on engine and transmission decisions. But again, those people autos are FWD-only.

For my funds, I might splurge on the loaded entrance-wheel-push Top quality due to the fact this automobile is so, so excellent with a guide transmission, even if it prices $32,000. If I didn’t care so significantly about a third pedal the Desired trim appears to be like the ideal deal, with its heated entrance seats and 12-speaker Bose seem procedure. I might depart all-wheel push on the table, individually, but this is a actually great element for people who reside in snowy climates. Insert the attractive paint identified as soul crimson and that puts me out the door at $26,890, including $945 for place.

Yes, the 2021 Mazda3 is a lot more high-priced than a Honda Civic or Toyota Corolla, but it is way better to glance at and nicer to push, much too. Moreover, you don’t have to shell out the massive bucks on turbo electric power to get a wonderful-driving Mazda3. The turbocharged variation could be a refined small performer, but even the conventional Mazda3 is super entertaining.