Tuesday, April 15, 2014

First Drive: 2014 Mazda3 1.5 V and 2.0 R

Photos by Ulysses Ang
Normally, you launch a new vehicle in the relative safety of a hotel ballroom before inviting motoring journos to flog them on a racetrack or let them loose on public roads. Not so with Mazda. From the company that promises zoom-zoom, the best, and perhaps the only way, to prove your product’s mettle is to drive it 600 kilometers from Manila to Baler, Aurora and back. It’s a baptism by fire—one that not only proves that the Mazda3 is a class-redefining sports compact, but one that clearly says that Mazda’s back big time. (For the complete specs and press release click here or how it stacks up against the competition).



The moment you lay your eyes on the Mazda3, it just begs to be driven. It’s a swoopy, sporty machine with all the right curves and angles. By far, it’s the best looking car to wear the KODO – Soul of Motion design language. The decisively cab-rearward design and long wheelbase contribute to an unmistakable stance while the signature crisscrossing lines covey the potential energy of a compressed spring ready to unwind. Mazda is offering both the sedan and hatchback version of the Mazda3 in both 1.5- and 2.0-liter flavors. Thankfully both look equally stunning; no design afterthoughts here. The 1.5 V wears 205/60R16s while the 2.0 R goes up to Jordan-esque 215/45R18s. The 2.0 R also adds more exterior features like bi-xenon HID headlamps with LED daytime running lights, rain-sensing wipers, power folding door mirrors, dual exhaust tips, and a shark’s fin antenna (for the hatchback).



Inside, the Mazda3 continues the brand’s Jinba Ittai or “horse and rider as one” concept. As such, everything in the cockpit is driver-centric from the instrumentation to the seating and mirror positioning to controls of the audio and climate control system. You sit lower in the Mazda3 compared to other compact cars and this creates a sense of connectedness with the car. The seats, though manually-adjusted, feature adjustable lumbar support, a welcome luxury in this class. The three-binnacle gauge cluster is unique depending on the variant: the 1.5 V gets a central speedometer and digital tachometer on the right while the 2.0 R receives a central tachometer and digital speedometer. Both versions are fairly easy to read, though the 1.5 V’s minuscule tachometer gets getting used to while the 2.0 R’s permanent heads-up display (even when it’s not displaying anything) is a bit distracting when attacking curves. Space-wise, the Mazda3 is promises class-leading interior space (based on wheelbase), and this maybe the case for the front occupants. However, the backseat is good for two adults at the most. Still, everyone will enjoy the comfy and supportive seating.



Doing the Manila to Baler run in the 2.0 R, the Mazda3 showed exemplary road manners as well as responsive steering. The steering is very linear and is the best tuned among front-wheel drive cars on the market. It feels planted and there’s high confidence even when pushing through switchbacks and long, sweeping mountain bends. The ride’s a bit on firm sporty side and doesn’t like low-speed undulations. The 155 horsepower, 200 Nm of torque look great on paper but since they’re way up the rev range (6,000 rpm and 4,000 rpm respectively), there’s a need to mash the throttle or kick down the gear to get some decent pace going. Thankfully, the 6-speed automatic is responsive enough and there’s even a set of paddle shifters to help you out. On the 300-plus kilometer journey, the 2.0 R managed 11.62 km/L though this figure was done with the A/C on full blast meaning the standard i-Stop and i-ELOOP technology didn’t turn on as much.



On the return trip, it was time to try out the 1.5 V, and like the 2.0 R, it showed the same great road manners and responsive steering. Like its bigger brother, the 1.5 V feels confident and planted through corners. Plus, the taller tires create the benefit of a more compliant ride. The engine displacement of the 1.5 V may seem fit for a B-segment car, but make no mistake, this engine is more powerful than the outgoing 1.6-liter MZR. It now has 112 horsepower (up 8) and the same 144 Nm of torque at a lower rpm (3,500 rpm versus 4,000 rpm). During the more spirited legs of this drive, the chassis could clearly use more power, but on the more relaxed portions, the power is more than enough. This model also comes with paddle shifters and they are your best friend when it comes to tackling uphill terrain. The 1.5-liter Skyactiv almost tops out at 130-140 km/h, but keep things at a steady 100 km/h, and you’ll be rewarded with a 15.15 km/L mileage figure despite not having the i-Stop or i-ELOOP systems.



They say that the perfect road trip starts with a great car and the all-new Mazda3 certainly ranks as one of them. The Mazda3 is one of the most rewarding cars to ever come out of Hiroshima and the smile on everyone’s face is testament to that. This is one car that makes every trip enjoyable and every journey an epic one.

93 comments:

  1. hi.. i thought the paddle shifters is a standard feature across the range? would like to know which one would you choice... the 1.5 or 2.0 skyactiv?

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    1. I thought so too, but they are not. Paddle shifters are standard on the 2.0 and not available on the 1.5. It's funny though that the units we had for testing had the paddle shifters. The 1.5 also doesn't have a leather steering wheel which the demo units had.

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    2. even on the specs you posted, they indicated that paddle shifters is standard feature in all variants.. wrong info Mazda. OK na sana ang 1.5 even without i-stop or i-eloop.. sayang naman.

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    3. Hi chase. Just received word from Mazda that the 1.5 V DOES come with paddle shifters just like the 2.0 R but NOT a leather steering wheel. I've corrected the story to reflect that as well.

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    4. Mazda Philippines just updated me again and they said that the 1.5 V does come with leather steering wheel as well. This makes the 1.5 V an excellent value car.

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    5. hi uly.. thanks for ALL the clarifications. oo nga, excellent value car sya. unfortunately for me they don't have the "soul red" for this variant.. sabi nga nila, you can't have it all. haha.

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    7. Hi is the picture with a man in a red shirt is he driving the mazda 1.5 v hatchback? Because im interested in the speedometer like iron man hahaha im picking a car for my 18 birthday

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  2. I knew it. Online reviews shows a really small back seat area and ingress looks painful. 11.6 kpl is a ridiculously low number for a highway drive.

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    1. But we were seriously gunning it with the 2.0 R. I'll reserve my judgement on fuel economy once I get to test drive the Mazda3 thoroughly.

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    2. Looking forward to that review. Was wondering why fuel consumption is worse than the CX-5, which I assume is a heavier vehicle. Planning to get a new car in June and while I'm leaning towards a Corolla, this Mazda is stunning. Fuel economy is the final factor (I can live with the crappy back seat).

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    3. check u po performance and economy ng Nissan SYLPHY. u may visit any of our co-dealers in Manila for a test drive. am pretty sure pasok sa expectations ninyo ang car na ito.

      Mabuhay & Happy Motoring!

      -nissan naga
      naga city, camsur, bicol

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    4. ZOOM ZOOM....... MAZDA! Great Brand too...
      Peace.

      -nissan guy of naga city

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  3. Sir ulysses. Is the new mazda 3 better buy than the upcoming new honda city vx version 890k srp(which includes most features of the TOTL new city) or even the honda civic 1.8? Im a honda fan and depends on its Honda brand reliability and resale value.

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    1. in guess you are not really a honda fan since you are asking about this car.

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    2. I'm interested in the answer too..

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    3. hi! hoping for the response about mazda 3 vs honda city

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  4. Hi Mr Ang. Thanks for this review. Is the aluminum silver the same as the one in Mazda 6? Or is darker/grayish tone?

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    1. This isn't our full review yet :-D but thanks for reading it.

      The silver-gray of the Mazda3 seems to be the same shade as the Mazda6.

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    2. Thanks for the preview and reply. I initially reserved for the 2.0 liter hatch, with the initial information that the base model is really bare in features. With the official specs, it turned out ~half of the features were also on the base model, making me question if the savings in purchase price would make it worth sacrificing the features the base won't be getting.

      With your initial impressions the 2liter you said that the 2l "there’s a need to mash the throttle or kick down the gear to get some decent pace going", while for the 1.5l, "During the more spirited legs of this drive, the chassis could clearly use more power", means to me that both engines have their downsides, but for the 1.5 can you say it does not feel underpowered anymore? And how does the 1.5 compares to the competition (e.g. Lancer Ex 1.6 and Altis 1.6), as far as the engine capacity is concerned?

      Thanks

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    3. With maximum power and torque for the 2.0 Skyactiv available at the top-end of the engine rev range, you need to be a bit more aggressive with the throttle to get some great pace going. But that's not to say that the engine's weak. On the contrary, the 2.0's pretty good, but you just need to wring the gas a bit more.

      The story's the same with the 1.5-liter engine and the lack of torque is very evident during our trip back to Manila when we tried tackling mountain roads outside the convoy (we broke convoy on the way back). For city driving, I don't find the 1.5-liter underpowered--in fact, I even think it comes out as a great value product. I'd likely get the 1.5-liter for myself UNLESS the 2.0-liter does similar or better fuel economy in city driving.

      Compared to the Altis 1.6 and Lancer EX 1.6, the Mazda3 1.5 sits somewhere in the middle. The Altis 1.6 has good low-end power and torque and feels very quick from the get-go. Toyota's hybrid CVT with torque converter does well in making the 1.6 feel more powerful than it really is. The Mazda3 1.5 comes in second. Again, you need to put a bit more gas but at least the engine produces a nice note and the transmission is very, very responsive. The Lancer EX 1.6 is just plain old. The 1.6 may pull well, but the old 4-speed 'box and the boomy engine just doesn't cut it. The Mitsubishi doesn't like to be revved.

      Hope this answers your question.

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    4. Yes, it does and thanks for taking your time answering.

      How many persons were in the car during the test which you've observed the engine capacity and fuel consumption? If there are 5 adults in the car, would the 1.5 feel underpowered?

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    5. In the entire convoy, we were 2-3 in a car. In the car we were in, we were 3. With that kind of load, both the 2.0 and the 1.5 don't feel underpowered. However, you have to work the 1.5 more to get some pace during uphill (say going up Baguio).

      If you're really concerned with power, go with the 2.0 R. If you have a large SUV (say Montero Sport or Fortuner) and will use the Mazda3 purely for city, the 1.5 will suffice.

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    6. Got it. Mostly the car will be used by 2 persons and rarely will be under full seating capacity. I've changed my reservation to 1.5liter, thinking it's packing more value. Thank you very much for enlightening us, and for a really fast First Drive article, been waiting for this car for 6 months already. Looking forward to test drive the car on the 25th at BGC, and be able to drive it on the first week of May.

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  5. Hi Uly,
    Can you tell which pictures, as provided by the link below, are for 1.5V and what's for 2.0R? I am more interested to know which instrument cluster are for each variant.

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yWN2ctys2KU/U0ownhLt88I/AAAAAAAARAs/G9qbFm1V6E0/s1600/2014_mazda_3_11.jpg

    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-8fHw0_G1gCo/U0owlz2kVrI/AAAAAAAAQ_0/wwJPudU4b4M/s1600/2014_mazda_3_06.jpg

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    1. The first photo is the 1.5 V variant while the second photo is the 2.0 R.

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    2. Thanks, Uly. Personally, I like more the instrument cluster of 1.5V than the 2.0R because this is where I am used to, and good for me since I reserved the 1.5V.
      I just noticed now, the fuel consumption readout of 1.5V is 13.6L/100Km, and that equates to 7.35km/L. Hmm....

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    3. Don't worry about the FC indicated on the gauge cluster. I just "stole" a shot during one of our breaks. Again, we'll see how both models do after a lengthier drive on city roads :-)

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  6. Do you have pictures of the 1.5l (no DRL) head lights/tail lights in the evening?

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    1. Sorry I don't have photos of the headlights / taillights when on. But the 1.5 has normal halogens so the lighting configuration is slightly different. As for the back, the brake lights are the round part while the rear park lights glow as a bar.

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    2. So it means the 1.5 and 2.0 have the same head/tail lights except for the front running lights? Do you think it (running light) can be installed as an aftermarket upgrade later on? How's the road noise going on with both engines? The new Mazda3 is being hailed worldwide where it has been released but one major complaints is the quality of the ride in terms of NVH. Is it just evident on the spirited drives as well?

      Thanks for giving time to answer our questions.

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    3. Unfortunately the DRLs are integral to the headlight assembly. The 2.0 R also has bi-xenon headlights. If you want the DRLs, chances are, you have to opt for the entire headlight assembly from the 2.0 R.

      Road noise is controlled. Much better than the first and second generation Mazda3, though still no match for the likes of the Corolla Altis. I'd say it's about the same, if not, better than the Honda Civic.

      As for the ride, yes, that's one of the problems I've experienced with the Mazda3 during this drive. Though the high-speed stability is good and is quite okay on smooth roads, when it comes to small undulations (like EDSA roads), the ride becomes choppy.

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  7. Hi boss Uly!

    What colors does 1.5 V come in? I hope they would have the red..

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    1. Good question. I'll ask the folks over from Mazda and get back to you. I know for a fact that Soul Red commands a P 15,000 or P 16,000 additional and is only available for the 2.0 R.

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    2. According to Mazda:

      Mazda 3 1.5 V
      Snowflake White
      Aluminum Metallic
      Jet Black

      Mazda 3 2.0 R
      Snowflake White
      Aluminum Metallic
      Jet Black
      Soul Red
      Deep Crystal Blue

      Hope this answers your question.

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    3. Thanks Uly!
      Would there be additional payment if i would avail the soul red for the 1.5 V or is it just available in 3 colors?

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    4. I don't think getting the Soul Red in the 1.5 V is that easy. The Soul Red actually entails a special paint process to achieve the deep red luster. It's the 2.0 R's trademark color and I understand you have to pay additional money for it--just like White Pearl on some other brands.

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  8. About the safety features of the new Mazda3, I've read this in the Mazda AU website, "Stability control, traction control, ABS, EBD, brake assist and six airbags are standard on all new Mazda 3 models". In the specs of our local Mazda3, it's only the DSC, ABS w/ EBD and a couple of airbags were mentioned. Would appreciate if you can confirm with Berjaya about the other safety features which could have been omitted in the list, but actually exist on our local units. Thanks!

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    1. Local Mazda3s have dual SRS airbags, anti-lock brakes, and stability control as standard. Mazda combines stability control with traction control so all models have this standard equipment. The 2.0 R has curtain airbags but so side impact airbags.

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  9. I would like to ask if the 1.5 and 2.0 have navigation software with maps installed? If so, what's your experience with the user interface? How about the maps, do you find it informative enough?

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  10. I was told that the units here are just navigation-ready. The navigation software is not compatible with the PH setting. I hope I'm wrong though hehe

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    1. According to a Mazda sales rep that I asked, Mazda PH is still finding the compatible navigation software for our country because Mazda Japan initially failed to mention to them that the units we would be getting from them would be Navigation-ready. This means that eventually, Mazda PH could potentially be offering it as a dealer-installed option.

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    2. Yes, the cars are "navigation ready". The Mazda3 we tested already had the navigation SD card installed and though they work okay for major roads, they're not too good when it comes to provincial roads. That's the reason why Berjaya is not yet offering the navigation as standard equipment.

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  11. Hi Uly!

    I noticed that the 2.0R still lacks the following features that top of the line variants of the new 3 in other countries have, which would have sealed the deal for me:
    - dual-zone climate control (I understand it is definitely more of a luxury than a necessity, especially in a driver-focused compact car, which is most probably why Berjaya chose not to include it)
    - 9-speaker Bose sound system (I really enjoy my music)
    - cruise control (I understand its limited/pointless usage in Metro Manila, but still nice to have during out-of-town road trips)
    - back-up camera (again, more of luxury than necessity, but other countries get it)

    I understand that Berjaya probably chose not to include these features in order to keep the pricing competitive (which they did an excellent job of for the 2.0R), but still, would you know what the chances are of these features being offered as dealer-installed options down the road? OR since Mazda PH will be getting its Mazda 3 units on a per-order basis (according to a Mazda sales rep), will Mazda PH be accepting orders from its customers for units with the aforementioned additional features included? The same Mazda sales rep also told me that navi will be available once Mazda PH finds the navigation software for our country, because apparently, Mazda Japan failed to mention that the units we're getting are "navigation-ready" (not sure though if he just made this up off the top of his head)

    Thanks!

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    1. First of all, I don't think it's possible for Mazda to bring in units that aren't part of the official specs. Remember, it's not just about bringing in volumes, but also about having parts for them, servicing, etc. Also, I won't be surprised if some features are actually sold as a "package", so Berjaya Auto Philippines can't simply pick a feature without getting another. This could cause the price to go up.

      As for the navigation, yes, the Mazda3 is navigation ready. We've tested the maps, and while they are okay for the city, they're not so for provincial roads. Berjaya Auto did say they will improve on this map and will roll out incrementally better and more updated maps in the future.

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    2. Thanks for the reply, Uly! Noted. The Mazda sales rep actually informed me yesterday that a back-up camera would be made available as a dealer-installed option which would be integrated into the car's head unit (price TBD). In my humble opinion though, if Berjaya Auto decided to include at least the cruise control and dual-zone climate control on the 2.0R, just like in the previous generation to help it match-up better against its competition, plus the back-up camera, and sold it at P50K more, it'd still be competitive enough in its segment to generate a lengthy waiting list. But then again, that's just my opinion. Nevertheless, the new 3 is still an excellent car, and definitely looks like a winner as it is.

      Thanks for taking time to answer my question. Really looking forward to your full review on the car. Hope it includes in-depth insights on the real-world impact of the i-stop and i-eloop features on its FC, especially in crawling, stop-and-go Metro Manila rush hour traffic.

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  12. okay naman po ba back seat ng sedan? and hatchback? or medyo masikip? kasi yung mga previous generation ng mazda 3 medyo masikip likod eh

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    1. Please read the story first. I will not comment on this.

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  13. Sir, I thought you only get E-loops with the 2.5 variant. having a high compression ratio, would it run differently (smoother) on a high octane gasoline or is there a noticeable change with the grunt?

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    1. Nope. The i-ELOOP is standard on the 2.0. Plus the Mazda3 is designed to run even on 91-93 Octane.

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  14. Sir Uly, if you were to choose between the new altis 1.6V and mazda 3 1.5 skyactive, which one would you pick? Trying to decide which one to buy. Appreciate your thoughts on this. Thanks and more power sir!

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    1. We'll have a review of the 1.6V Corolla Altis soon. Watch out this space.

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  15. Kind of an OT, but I guess worthy to share. I found out today that Mazda (or my dealer) is putting an add-on to my monthly ammortization in the form of dealer incentive. The reason that I knew this because I applied for a car loan before I talked my dealer, and the bank gave me a lower interest rate. After I told my dealer that I already have an approved car loan and after they talk to my bank, the bank gave me a higher interest rate. My bank told me it's because of dealer's incentive. It's a turn-off and I don't know if it is an industry-wide practice. I am now considering another car.
    -- iano16

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  16. How does this compare against the elantra in terms of overall performance?

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  17. Hi! Any new on whether Mazda plans to launch a 2.0R manual variant? Thanks!

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    1. No one uses a manual shifter anymore, use the freakin' paddle shifter.

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    2. Sorry, but some people just prefer a freakin' stick shift.

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    3. Well, if you read up about the SkyActive Drive tranny, it combines the best of manual, DCT & CVT without their downsides. Modern automatics are demonstrably faster & more efficient than manuals now. There is no really no reason for stick shifts now when even high-end sports cars & F1 use paddle shifts.

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  18. natest drive ko 'to kagabi sa BGC. Yung 1.5L Sedan
    May paddle shifter naman sya. Lamig ng aircon and the suspension is superb.
    may navigation na rin sya.

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  19. I was there too yesterday. Its also my first time to see the Mazda 3 up-close. All I can say is WOW! Lalo na yung Soul Red na 2 liter variant. Super ganda and astig. I was able to test drive also the 2 liter variant. Lakas ng engine and super lamig nga ng aircon and the suspension is very good. Astig nung I-stop feature. Will be very useful talaga in city-driving. Interior to me is above average, mas okay pa sa akin yung interior ng Altis. But definitely this is one good compact car probably the best in its class. I can see another "Car of the year" from Mazda next year. Good job Mazda!

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    1. Disagree about the interior. The Mz3 interior & dashboard looks & feels more high-end & high-tech than the one on the Altis, esp. the Mz3 hatch which has a lighter color upholstery. But that's all a matter of personal preference lang naman. I still won't buy a 1.2M+ car with non-independent torsion beam rear suspension no matter how riced out it looks.

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  20. How's real world fuel consumption in city driving?..which variant is better in city driving in terms of fuel consumption?..glad to read answers..

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  21. Bring the Diesel with the Automatic.

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  22. is the center stack display on the 2.0 retractable?.. or is it fixed?
    is the heads up display on the 2.0 retractable as well?..

    thanks!

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  23. Hi sir Ulysses,

    I always read your reviews and it is really helpful and great! I'm a honda and toyota guy, my first car is honda city 2009(satisfied), second is toyota fortuner 2011(best ever car I owned), third is honda 2.0 2012(fair enough) and I tried Chev trailblazer 2.8 my fourth (but im not happy and disappointed). And now I'm planning to buy our fifth car and looking between for Altis 2.0 and Mazda 3 2.0R. I read your review both altis and mzd3 honestly its hard to pick, because Im more on off-roader power not speed. Can I ask your personal opinion what will you pick between those two?

    Thank you!

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    1. Better to choose mazda over toyota, toyota is over price in terms of its specs. mazda is now equipped with direct injection technology and it is more efficient than fuel injection and old vvti concept.

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  24. Hello there!

    Would just like to get some insights on the new MAZDA 3 Skyactiv (sedan)compared to the Altis 1.6 g a/t?

    Im confused po which one to choose. Both have atleast same price range.

    Hoping for your suggestions and comments po. Pro's and con's po...

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    1. pick between mazda 3 skyactiv 1.5 a/t (sedan) compared to altis 1.6 g a/t?

      which should i choose?

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  25. Just 2 airbags for the 1.5 and 4 for the 2 liter? The Filipino consumers deserve better.

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  26. Why my all new Mazda 3 1.5 A/T get worst in fuel consumption 12L/100km drive in crowded town. could anyone can tell me? please ............

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  27. 140kms/h lang ang Top Speed ng 1.5? Mas mabilis pa yung mga 1.0 liter na mini cars? Haay.. haay..

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  28. Aero kit, available dito?

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    1. If you're referring to the "Speed" body kit:
      http://www.carguide.ph/2014/09/pims-2014-mazda-launches-new-3-speed.html
      It's available as a separate model of the 5-door Mazda3 2.0R. It also comes with the Bose sound system as standard equipment.

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  29. Sayang naman dapat pwede mabili aero kit as accessories. finoforce ng mazda bumili ng top of the line - pano naman kaya yung base model lang kaya bilhin - ahay

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  30. Sirs and maams, Magtatanong lang po re sa fuel na ilalagay sa m3, nagpaplan kami ng wife ko na kukuha ng m3, ang Sabi kasi ng agent na kausap namin since m3 uses 91oct na gas, they discourage the use of petron fuel sa m3, even if they have the 91oct. Baka daw mag ka problem in the long run. Can anyone verify this if mayroong long term problem sa engine if petron ang ikakarga? I've been using petron fuel for the longest time and sila kasi ang go to gas station ko... Thanks

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  31. hi. i would just like to get your opinion on which mazda 3 i should get? I'm the type of guy who mostly travel long distances with a few guests. i would like to stick with the mazda 3 since it is a really gorgeous car (and since i can't afford mazda 6 LOL) thank you

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  32. hi is the Mazda 3 2.0R sports 2009 top of the line has CD/mp3 playeR?

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  33. planning to buy mazda 3 1.5 AT hatch or corolla altis please tell me which is better. Im a girl and i'll drive it around the city and i visit my province a lot. And sorry i dont have much knowledge in cars so does mazda have diesel? all the reviews im reading keeps on telling "GAS" so please help. And does mazda has a high resale value? because my parents are just buying me car to practice on because they really want fortuner so they'll buy it next year and ibebentana yung mazda. I genuinely need help right now

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    1. Mazda does have diesels, but not for the Philippine market. Their entire line-up here in the Philippines uses gasoline, but they can run on the most basic 91 octane.

      As for resale value, I think the newer Skyactiv models are getting higher residual value compared to older models. That said, brands like Toyota do offer slightly better second-hand car value compared to Mazda.

      The Mazda2 makes for a great first car. I suggest you give it a try. Personally, I think you can keep the Mazda2 for the considerable future. Vehicles like the Fortuner can be difficult to drive, especially for novice drivers. Cars like the Mazda2 and their equivalent, offer better response, tend to be more maneuverable, and are just as safe, if not safer, than mid-sized SUVs.

      Unless you plan to start a family after a year?

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    2. No plans for family pa. Pero dahil sainyo ill seriously consider buying Mazda 2. Kaya lang sabi ng friends ko po Honda City Navi+CVT na lang daw po. So para po sainyo Sir Mazda 2 or Honda City? Last question na po kasi bibili na po ako this month. Thank you po Sir Uly!

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    3. Get the Mazda 2 R 1.5 priced at 925k, than the overpriced City Vx+

      Delete
  34. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  35. Hi sir uly,

    We will be buying a new car next year for my wife and new baby(horay!!!) im a bit busy since i have to chance to check out the dealerships, anyways can i get some advice? Looking for a hatchback or small suv but it has to have an aircon vent at the back for the baby in the car seat..i was looking at the mazda 3 and i read your reviews, it was pretty awesome but does it have an aircon vent at the back?bec were seriously considering the 3 hatch thanks

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    1. Actually the Mazda3 doesn't have an A/C vent in the backseat. Sadly.

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  36. Torn between the Mazda 2 r sedan (love the interior and toys) or the Mazda 3 1.5. Any suggestions?

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  37. I have a question sir Uly about the hatchback, is the antenna of 2.0 R is the same as the 1.5 V? Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. No. The 2.0 uses a fin-type and 1.5 uses the bee's sting

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    2. Thank you! So i guess the sedan is the better choice since there is no difference in exterior design except for the head light. Thanks again!

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  38. Are mazdas really hard to maintain after the yojin period? They say it is quite expensive too.

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  39. sir Uly, can you help me decide which car should I buy...
    Honda City VX+ CVT AT vs. Mazda 3 1.5 V hatchback.

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  40. Hi. Any update on the SD card for the navigation system? It kinda sucks to have the hardware, which we paid for, but unable to use it because of software issues.
    In this day and age, a car's infotainment system is such a big deal. It is a deal breaker for most people. Had I known that Berjaya wouldn't be offering the SD cards and wouldn't be updating the system's firmware, I wouldn't have bought the car.

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  41. Why no Cruise Control? Such features should be standard already with all the expressway projects in, around and near Metro Manila.

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