2014 Mazda MAZDA3 S Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,315
edited September 2014 in Mazda

image2014 Mazda MAZDA3 S Long-Term Road Test

Fuel economy for March for our long-term 2014 Mazda 3.

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  • zimtheinvaderzimtheinvader Member Posts: 580
    If you go to fueleconomy.gov and select the option to customize the results it will actually revise the combined rating based on your driving. You just move a little slider back and forth for more or less stop and go city driving (or stop and go freeway driving for those in Southern California) and it will adjust what your real combined rating should be.
  • seppoboyseppoboy Member Posts: 93
    Today's hot economy compact is finally achieving the exact average fuel economy I recorded with my 1997 BMW 328i over 45,000 miles when I owned it ten years ago, with six cylinders and more weight. Of course, it required premium gasoline, but progress in fuel efficiency is slower than we imagine sometimes.
  • zimtheinvaderzimtheinvader Member Posts: 580
    seppoboy, you can't really compare what a group of people driving a car in one area get to what someone else gets driving a completely different car it is the definition of anecdotal evidence. And you are comparing a car that would not meet current smog or crash test requirements. Just check the passenger cabin compression for the 97 3-series at the 5 second point on the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYsUpgeeWco now compare it to the Mazda3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wErv2res0dE - - - and the final thing it once again points out is that they can design cars to be very efficient but if they are still driven 'enthusiastically' they lose much of that efficiency.
  • camrydriver69camrydriver69 Member Posts: 54
    Fuel economy of small cars especially hasn't been improving a lot since 4-cylinders in the 90's were pretty efficient to begin with, and improvements in engine and transmission are being somewhat offset by weight. Automatic transmissions have improved a lot though, and can now match the fuel economy of manuals. Driving on the same highway route I can get 40 mpg in a 07 Corolla 5spd and 42 mpg in a 12 Mazda 3 auto. Small difference but the Mazda has a bigger engine, more power, more weight, and is a safer car. A 328 on the highway might match a Mazda 3 in the city but I'd like to see it get 40+ mpg.
  • seppoboyseppoboy Member Posts: 93
    zimtheinvader, the larger point is that one of the more efficient sixes of fifteen or more years ago could achieve the kind of mileage one of the most efficient fours gets today, in a mixed driving environment. That's surprising in a way, and just points out that all the progress we think we've achieved as to fuel mileage only in a decade and a half may be less than we think, in the real world. Of course standards have changed as to comfort/convenience and safety, I'm just commenting on mileage and not trying to snark about anything.
  • mlin32_mlin32_ Member Posts: 9
    With a relatively high compression ratio, I wonder if it would see any benefit from midgrade or premium fuel?
  • zimtheinvaderzimtheinvader Member Posts: 580
    seppoboy, I get what you are saying, however a 1997 328i with an automatic transmission is rated at 17/24 fueleconomy.gov and fuelly.com shows an average of 22.7 over 182,000 miles. Which would make your mpg quite high in comparison. So my point was imagine what you might get driving a Mazda3 since you greatly exceeded the ratings on the BMW.
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