Ed Higginbotham
Ed Higginbotham Associate Editor
8/24/17 3:35 p.m.
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The Mazda 3 has served as the brand's entry-level five-door hatchback for almost 15 years. The latest edition combines the same practical five-door layout with a 184-horsepower 2.5-liter powerplant. Our test car also came with a manual transmission. On paper it looks like another good general-utility car.

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thestig99
thestig99 HalfDork
8/24/17 5:34 p.m.

My brother has a nicely optioned 3 GT hatch with the 2.5 6spd combination. I drove it for a week or so and was VERY impressed. I didn't want to give it back.

Fun enough to drive, comfortable, deceptively large hatch (I was in the process of moving at the time), just did everything really well. He has a long highway commute (he has owned it for about a year, and is coming up on 30k miles) and gets well over 30mpg.

However....

Paired with the slick-shifting sex-speed [...] —it rewards you with a payoff.

... it did lack this feature

02Pilot
02Pilot Dork
8/24/17 5:54 p.m.

My GF has wound up over 12k miles on her '17 Sport since she got it in December. It's really quite an impressive little vehicle, even with the 2.0. It was an order of magnitude better (as a total package) than everything else we looked at.

WildScotsRacing
WildScotsRacing Dork
8/24/17 9:55 p.m.

That new Soul Red Crystal Metallic paint is just mind-bending to look at. I saw a new Mazda 6 a few months ago wearing it and just wow!

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