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2014 Mazda 6 Full Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Posts: 10,006
edited September 2014 in Mazda

image2014 Mazda 6 Full Test

Mazda's new midsize entry is shapely and efficient, but can the 2014 Mazda 6 compete with the Camry and Accord? Read our full road test.

Read the full story here


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Comments

  • fortstringfortstring Posts: 111
    Since I am typically inclined toward dark blue sheetmetal, I was afraid that the Mazda shade of blue paint would be too dull, but it looks great in these photos (and I suspect it will look great in person / on the road). Count me as *highly* interested in driving away from the showroom in one.

    I was leaning toward the FR-S but this Mazda6 might be more practical in the long run with carting around buddies. Tough choices!

    Two years ago, I never thought I'd be able to say that about cars in the 20-25k mark.
  • agentorangeagentorange Posts: 893
    "And while SBS will no doubt save a few bumpers, it'll also give you regrettable seatbelt burn should you approach a toll gate too rapidly,..." I wonder how you know that? ;) Nice looking car. Do I detect some antipathy towards 4-cylinder cars from the author in this comment, "It's a smooth, slow puller, ..." Since when was 7.6 to 60 mph slow?
  • skw0123skw0123 Posts: 33
    The side profile of this car is notable...the cabin seems pushed back and the front overhang is really short for a FF. Very nice proportions in this design.
  • bc1960bc1960 Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 171
    I had high hopes for this car but some of the details in the final product have been disappointing even though overall the car is good.

    Considering that it is the same width and all of two inches shorter than its bloated, overweight predecessor, it's disappointing that the trunk has gone from the top of the class to the bottom--compacts like the Jetta and 2014 Forte have slightly more volume. Some people think it's an odd thing to complain about in a "sport sedan", but the trunk is actually smaller than the first generation car. Apparently the trade-off for an adult-sized rear seat is that the passengers have to pack lighter.

    There doesn't seem to be "sweet spot" model anymore. The Touring is about the same price as the previous Touring Plus, but it lacks niceties like standard fog lamps (now optional) and a moonroof (not available). Plus, the Sport's nice-quality cloth is decontented to vinyl. Either this is a ploy to capture the rubber fetishists who normally have to buy German, or the marketeers think that if they slap the big wheels and tires on and have upholstery that's obviously not cloth then people will think they're fooling their neighbors into believing they sprang for the Grand Touring. Or possibly it's intended to be the go-to car for teetotalers who drive around their bing-drinking friends.

    Honda has finally been beaten for fewest paint hues--6, all but one a shade of greige. The one that isn't, Soul Red, is $300 extra. So the car may have more personality, but it's going incognito.

    Love the exterior and interior design, but if I'm replacing my 2007 I have to place my hopes on them not screwing up the Mazda3 again.
  • agentorangeagentorange Posts: 893
    @bc1960 Having looked at the photo I would hardly call that a small trunk. I was struck by its regular shape from the packing point of view. I am one of the weird ones who does not care for a sunroof so that is not an issue for me.
  • fordson1fordson1 Posts: 1,512
    Really nice-looking car. I'm glad the chassis is communicative and responsive, but I see that Mazda has found a worthy replacement for the crappy Bridgestone Turanzas - they now are using crappy
    Dunlop SP Sport 5000s. And those front brakes look tiny. The larger issue to most prospective buyers is the infotainment/nav suite - I have not read anything good about it in any Mazda test. In this test I see plenty of comparisons with Accord, Camry, etc. - but none to the car's most obvious competitor, given the focus of its designers - the Fusion, another midsize that emphasizes style and driving pleasure. Lastly, it sounds like there is enough power with one driver and no cargo, but it will become apparent once it's loaded down with luggage and passengers that it needs more than 184 hp.
  • duck87duck87 Posts: 649
    Great car, but at the volumes that Mazda is going to move, it's going to continue to be a bit-player, especially with how good the new Accord and Fusion already are.
  • adamb1adamb1 Cookeville, TNPosts: 122
    I'm just not interested if there is no V6 available. I have 2010 6s GT with the 3.7L V6. 270 hp makes a Mazda 6 fun to drive. 184 hp 4 banger. Not in a car that big. Sorry no go.
  • I'm a very happy owner of a 2014 Mazda 6 GT... the exact trim color and options as the one in this article. I absolutely love it. It is interesting that the average MPG in the trip computer reads 30 mpg after 1,100 miles. However, measured manually I can easily get more than 550 miles in combined driving per tank (driving smart of course). With a tank of just over 17 gallons that's > 32mpg. It was given to me with a full tank of gas and I have filled it only twice so far with my usual 1/4 tank left. I still have 2/3 tank left. I have no doubt that in highway-only I can squeeze more than 650 miles out of that tank. Meanwhile, I don't know where to start about my favorite features... from the transmission, more than adequate acceleration, 19" wheels, the radar cruise, looks, etc. The radar cruise took me a while to game it, but it is awesome once you learn how to optimize its use.
  • emajoremajor Posts: 332
    The EPA ratings alone ought to help boost this car's sales numbers over its predecessor. 185 hp is plenty for a family sedan; 0-60 in 7.6 seconds with an automatic transmission is not slow. Between this Mazda6, Honda Accord Sport, Ford Fusion, owning a 4 cylinder family sedan can actually be enjoyable.
  • emajoremajor Posts: 332
    From the article: "You'll be reminded that it comes from a group of people who assume driving means thinking about what you're doing, even if it's just getting the kids to school. Possibly it's this philosophy that killed the Mazda MPV minivan and relegated the previous 6 to an also-ran sales position among midsize contenders."

    I think it's more complex than that. The last Nissan Altima and most Honda Accord and Civic generations were mainstream cars with above-average handling and feel that also were very strong sellers. It will take a better analyst than me to figure out why the big family-friendly previous 6 sold so poorly when the Altima and Accord succeeded.
  • iceman16iceman16 Posts: 38
    I checked out the Mazda6 at my local auto show this year. The back seat has good head room, but Mazda achieved that by lowering the seat cushions. Back seat passengers end up sitting with their knees much higher than their butts. It's not at all comfortable for this 6'2"" male.
  • jederinojederino Posts: 0
    Handsome car with nice instrument cluster and good dynamics. I like it! That 4-cylinder delivers good fuel economy, and would save me $500 per year over the six in the Fusion. And this transmission sounds refreshing.
  • glossgloss Posts: 150
    Car's a total attention-grabber in person. Saw one in Soul Red cruising in traffic and it looked like the only car on the road.
  • greenponygreenpony Chicago, ILPosts: 531
    The unintuitive "manual" function of the shifter is a strike against this car. Forward downshift will never be intuitive for me.
  • mohatumohatu Posts: 21
    greenpony: +100500.

    Edmunds seems to be especially fond of this backwards arrangement for some reason and eagerly pushes it as The Only Right Way on every occasion. Must be something religious.
  • This car is a beauty in person as well as in these pictures. I saw one and sat behind the wheel at a local auto show. She's a keeper, for sure. Comparing this to the pedestrian Camry and Accord, you'll be able to pick this beauty out in the sea of your average parking lot. And after this review, driving one is just as rewarding as looking at it. Fuel efficiency and practicality are also checked off. Great job, Mazda from distingishing yourself from your basic appliance and making it more fun to drive from point A to point B.
  • darthbimmerdarthbimmer Posts: 606
    I saw a model of the new 6 at Mazda USA a few weeks ago. Very handsome car. The sheetmetal is curvy and muscular without being gaudy. I am surprised at the lack of a V6 powertrain. It's great to have a drivable 4-cyl base model for low cost and high mileage. The market in the past 2 years has come to demand that. But not all buyers are shopping strictly on the basis of fuel economy, especially in a car this size and with prices tipping 30 grand. There needs to be a decent V6 option.
  • Enthusiast here...who has driven the manual, 22k version of the 6 and absolutely loved it! The shifter has short, sporty throws and is fun to drive. This model also comes with 17 inch wheels/tires, which look great and should prove to be considerably cheaper to replace. I personally do not like the trend towards the huge 19/20 inch rims that are commonly found these days on new vehicles....If you like to drive a stick, check out the Mazda 6....!
  • Since you were comparing trunk space, note that the Accord doesn't have a split folding backseat (anyone speculate why?). The Mazda6 does. So while the Accord offers a little more trunk space, the Mazda is ahead regarding utility.
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  • nuievenuieve Posts: 43
    This car is invisible on the road, nicely designed but ordinary and not interesting to look at. I saw a few passing by, but it took me a while to register it was a 6 and by the time I look back, they are gone.
  • rwatsonrwatson Posts: 144
    At leat someone is making (what appears to be) a tasteful interior, but I'd have to feel it to know. As far as the design, well, it reminds me of just about everything else new on the road, you know, the ones with big gaping fronts and pinched rears. At least it's not as bad looking as the new Fusion with the truck grill, but that's stylish and by-golly, it's gotta be a luxury machine then, yup. Seriusly though, I just looked at these on the Mazda website and they lost me. While I applaud them for offering the manual XMSN, I curse them for telling me what trim level I can afford with said transmission. You guessed it: only cloth, no heated seats, auto climate-control, or nice stereo upgrades available. Once again, someone assumes you can't afford decent stuff if you don't want auto transmissions. I'm sure that's a Mazda USA decision. I wonder what the diesel will come with.
  • tbone85tbone85 Posts: 27
    I too find it bizarre to waste much space comparing the 6 to Camry. The 6 is not trying to compete to be the volume leader, it's looking to find a niche in the segment. The Fusion and possibly Accord Sport are the closest competition in terms of sporting sedan intentions.
  • darthbimmerdarthbimmer Posts: 606
    Dear Mazda, please replace the 2.5L option in the 3 with this engine. Zoom, zoom!
  • Since when do "most of us" want "the car that will get us through three to five years with as few hassles as possible".

    I don't know about you but my minimum is 10 years. I think you automotive journalist are getting jaded by all that shiny new equipment that's available to you whenever you want it.
  • Anyone looking at cars in this segment should have this car on their list to test drive. It has the driving dynamics that set it apart.
    The styling is phenomenal from every angle. The 17" wheels offer fine handling, a smoother ride and look just fine. Great job Mazda.
  • Nary an observation or comment on the complete lack of a 6 cylinder power-train option? No turbo-charged, super-charged or a sport/performance option on the 4-cylinder power-plant? Come on, guys, let's not let Mazda, the manufacturers in general, or the federal government get away with playing regulatory games with CAFE. A car this size, weight, class needs a 6 cylinder engine to offer any semblance of comfortable driving, let alone performance or spirited driving. I've owned a 2003 6S Touring and a 2009 6S Touring; the 03 desperately needed a more powerful engine and it had the small block 6 in it as the performance option. The 09 has a bigger Ford 6 but it is also a bigger car with more weight. All the accolades for the new 6S and only a 4-banger. Utterly ridiculous. They lost a customer here on that market decision.
  • booba5booba5 Posts: 1
    @greenpony: mazda does it right (so does bmw). If you put your hand loosely on the shifter and accelerate your hand will naturally move backward (i.e. performs an upshift), and if you decelerate your hand naturally moves forward (performs a downshift).
  • Just bought the 2014 Mazda 6 sport last week. It's a great car. It's design and handling really make it stand out among midsize family sedans. It won't win any drag races but it has competitive acceleration for it's class and gets great gas mileage. I am averaging 29mpg with about 50% highway (60-65mph) and 50% city driving.

    Some things I have noticed: Plenty of backseat space, gigantic trunk, smooth transmission, suspension stiffer than others but results in better handling, road noise is acceptable but not the quietest and the base model radio stinks but that's to be expected (will upgrade soon)

    I highly recommend. At least test drive it.
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