Thursday, March 18, 2010

Long Term Update 1: 2010 Mazdaspeed3

"Some may complain that the boosted MZR engine doesn't feature more power for 2010," notes associate Web editor Rory Jurnecka, "but honestly, it doesn't need any more. What a fantastic engine: not super torquey at the low end, but spool it up and past 4000 rpm this thing flies. The shift action is pretty slick (Mazda is the king of budget manual boxes) and overall the car feels firm and well balanced -- pretty nimble too."

Alas, Jurnecka likes the styling a lot less. "No one will ever call this car good-looking, but it can be admired for its sleeper/practical appearance. Still, that huge smiley grille has to go." Jurnecka appreciates the interior's functionality. "Just like our old long-term STI, this 'Speed3's hatch design makes performance practical. I used it to haul a rollbar for the project Fiat home last night and found there was space to spare."

2010 Mazdaspeed3
Months/miles in service 3/8439
Avg econ/CO2 22.9 mpg/0.85 lb/mi
Unresolved problems None
Maintenance cost $103.01 (oil change/inspection/rotate tires)
Normal-wear cost $0


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