Why I Selected a 2011 Mazda 3 S Hatchback - Page 2 - Mazda3 Forums : The #1 Mazda 3 Forum
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-26-2011, 10:06 AM
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: SE Floridq
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Re: Why I Selected a 2011 Mazda 3 S Hatchback

I also drove the Focus HB Titanium. My complaints were the complicity of the dash and the main dislike was the manual mode in A/T. I like to drive with A/T and the manual mode in the Focus is a button on side of the shifter. I love the manual mode in my Miata and when I get the Mazda 3 HB with A/T I know I'll have the same manual mode as on the Miata.

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-27-2011, 12:44 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 34
Re: Why I Selected a 2011 Mazda 3 S Hatchback

good choice. i was deciding between a scion xB and the mazda hatch. the materials in the xB such the dashboard felt cheap. things in the mazda came standard while they were added options in the xB. although the scion was cheaper and i was on a budget, mazda had a financing deal that i was able to take advantage of and the total cost in the end was about the same. I agree with you on the VW reliability as well. That put me off from even putting it in the mix. Although my brother had a jetta that lasted him quite a while, other friends had none stop problems with their VWs and moved on to Japanese cars after.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-05-2011, 12:02 AM
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Re: Why I Selected a 2011 Mazda 3 S Hatchback

I too just picked up a new '11 3 hatch. I had the same response with the Focus when test driving. My wife and I decided on the 3 because the back seat of the Focus is a joke. It is tiny. We need room for car seats and there was not much room in the Focus. The roof was a little too low for us too. We really wanted to like the Focus but when we test drove the 3, it was a no-brainer. The 3 had more room and more power, and the dash was simpler (as others have stated). The fuel economy was lower, but the driving experience was night and day difference. The 3 won hands down.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-02-2011, 11:33 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2011
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Re: Why I Selected a 2011 Mazda 3 S Hatchback

[ftp][/ftp]I like the car with large room and more power.Even i don't want to equip the large speakers at the back. Mini www.12vcity.com subwoofer saves much room.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-03-2011, 07:54 PM
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Re: Why I Selected a 2011 Mazda 3 S Hatchback

I bought a 2012 3 s Hatch after comparison-shopping the new Kia Forte 5-door, the Focus SE Sport HB, Mitsubishi Lancer GTS hatch, and Subaru Impreza Hatch.

The Mazda won out because it checked more boxes than any of the competitors

Practical: check
Sporty / Fun to Drive: check
Available w manual trans: check
Reasonable Insurance: check
Fuel Efficient: err, no. It's not terrible, but it's not efficient.

Kia lost me right at the outset by not offering manual transmission in anything but a base model. I wanted the sportier engine/suspension. Mitsubishi lost me because there didn't seem to be any GTS hatches in my region of the country. The base model was just too pokey. So that got the axe. The Impreza was tempting - it finished 2nd or 3rd. But it driving it just seemed dull compared to the 3, and the styling, while improving, was still . . . well . . . Subaru.

I thought I'd buy a Focus, based on all the rave reviews. The car I was replacing was a 7 year old focus with 83k miles. It had been fairly reliable, and so I wanted to give Ford a shot to keep my business. And I had no problem finding the exact combination of color/trim/transmission/options. I'd even give it a slight edge over the 3 in terms of styling. Not that it's wonderful, but it's certainly a bit fresher.

Why didn't I buy the Focus? The 2.0 gets close to the horsepower of the Mazda 3 s, but it's not so close in torque. It had noticeably less passing power. But the real issues were the dash and the manual shifter. Most people love the Focus interior, so kudos to Ford. But it looks chintzy to me. Just my $.02. And the shifter was nowhere near as quick and fun to use as Mazda's. Where the 3 s shifter seemed to snick with quick, fairly short throws, the Focus just seemed notchy and clunky. And the throttle response was front-heavy enough to make me feel like I was driving a manual again for the first time. Blech.

So Mazda scored the upset win. I really thought I'd end up with the Focus, or maybe even the Lancer. Glad I took that test-drive at the Mazda dealer. It made all the difference.

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