• autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    edited July 2013
    The interior of the Mazda3 has some curiosities.

    - The speedo and tach are no longer bosom bodies. The tach is now on its own. The speed displays "heads up" on a panel behind the tach (not beside it or in centre stack). See the left side of this photo:
    inside 2014 Mazda3

    - Music and other functions are controlled by the "commander" knob which is located below the centre stack similar to controls used in BMW and other brands. BTW: options for music are unspecified; have CDs been banished as some bloggers assume?

    Mazda described this as part of their new HMI interface. "All-new for Mazda vehicles and being launched with the 2014 Mazda3 will be a next-generation human-machine interface (HMI) system. Based on the heads-up cockpit concept, the new HMI system aims to help drivers maintain proper posture, concentrate on the road and drive more safely, even while handling larger amounts of information. The information used is divided into groups, and an innovative screen layout is employed to let the driver safely balance the primary job of driving with other peripheral information."

    I'm not convinced the HMI reduces the information load on the driver. The sheer volume of buttons and displays, the location of "groups" of information in different places and finally the size, brightness and clarity of those displays in different lighting conditions are all concerns. When comparing the various interface options chosen by auto manufacturers, Tesla's large iPad-like display seems closest to what I'd consider an effective HMI.
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    A reporter would like to speak with a Baby Boomer who recently (within the last year) purchased a compact or subcompact car. If you can assist, please contact [email protected] with your preferred contact information by July 17, 2013
  • snevillesneville Member Posts: 10
    I have the same question. Is this a reasonable deal? $1800 for extended warranty -- pretty much the same Mazda coverage for up to 7 yrs or 100K. How do I decide? Peace of mind - low maintenance is important to me.
  • JBaumgartJBaumgart Member Posts: 890
    Save $100 a month for the manufacturer's 36 month warranty period and you'll have $3,600 to cover just about any unexpected repair that comes up after that. If nothing major comes up while you have the car it's all your money and you will have saved yourself the $1,800. And you'll have a decent start on a down payment for your next vehicle.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Member Posts: 1,681
    The "worst" is when the finance guys try to add the extended warrant into your loan amount; then you're paying interest on your insurance.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    I got to drive the new Mazda3 today at a fund-raiser for my daughter's school at my local Mazda dealer. I had to pick one car to drive, and that was tough as they had the Mazda3i Sedan and Mazda3s hatch, the Mazda6, and CX-5, all of which I'd like to drive (and other Mazdas too). But I chose the Mazda3i sedan as that's what I'd probably get if I got a Mazda3 for my next car.

    It was a dark blue car with black interior, 16" alloys, about $21k list. I would have loved to drive the 6MT but all they had for the test drives was a 6AT. The first thing I noticed was how nice the interior is, compared to the old Mazda3. Looked more expensive than its price. I especially liked the thick leather wheel and the look and feel of the manual HVAC controls. The popup-style radio screen was a bit gimmacky but looked OK. I was able to adjust the manual driver's seat and the steering wheel for comfort, pushed the Start button, and off we went.

    Due to road construction and an accident, I wasn't able to take the car on the highway, but did take it on frontage roads and suburban streets at 40-55 mph. There were enough twists in the roads to give me a feel for the car's handling, which was crisp and flat. The car was fairly quiet, with some engine noise when revving (OK with me) and when going over sharp bumps. I looked at the instantaneous mpg readout occasionally while driving and it was varying between ~30 (uphill) and 99.9 (coasting downhill) mpg with the 2.0L Skyactiv engine and 6AT. The transmission shifted smoothly, but I'd go with the stick if I bought one.

    After the drive I sat in the back seat, and was disappointed to find that although there was enough leg room for me to sit behind myself with my legs splayed out a bit (I'm 5'9-1/2"), the seat wasn't comfortable because the bottom cushion was too low, thus little thigh support. I didn't notice that problem on the old Mazda3. Oh well, I wouldn't use the back seat that much, but several compacts offer roomier and more comfortable back seats.

    Based on my test drive, I'll keep the car on my shopping list when it's time to replace my leased car in a couple of years.
  • JBaumgartJBaumgart Member Posts: 890
    Nice review, backy - thanks.
  • BradBurnsBradBurns Member Posts: 1
    Awesome! Thank you, backy!
  • boafriendboafriend Member Posts: 3
    edited May 2021
    Pulling an old thread back to life...has anyone been able to get any kind of deal right now? I am looking for the Turbo Premium Plus (top trim) of the Mazda 3 and not a single dealer is selling below MSRP. Either at exact as is or marked up by thousands. Best I can get right now is a $930 customer lease support incentive, and there are other loyalty/graduate/etc incentives available, but I don't qualify for any. I do not want to put a down payment since that's just dumb for a lease and am only willing to pay due-at-signing fees. I am stuck at the $430-446/mo range right now.
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