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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I test drove a 2008 Mazdaspeed3 and the car felt and looked great except:

1). Lack of a sunroof, why doesn't Mazda offer an optional sunroof? It just felt dark in the interior while a Cobalt SS turbocharged has a sunroof that yields lots of natural lighting.

2). Telescoping steering wheel, useless for tall people. When fully extended, it is the same setting as the fixed wheel in my 07 Mustang GT or 2000 Crown Vic, which is still too close to the dashboard.

3). Seats, why didn't Mazda include power adjustable seats? The bolstering is GREAT but the height adjustment sucks since it is more of a tilt than a height adjustment like on the Cobalt. The lumbar adjustment isn't very intuitive and the seat bottom is too short. It needs to be 2" longer to provide me with adequate thigh support.

4). The ignition key lockout button, WTF was Mazda smoking when they implemented this? I asked the saleslady if I had to do that all the time since I thought it was a valet feature. She gave me a surprised look and said that this was normal, all you had to do was push the button with your thumb and twist it out. I tried over a dozen times and it wasn't a natural feeling at all. Every American car I owned just let you pull the key out in the OFF position. What's so unsafe or hard about that? This 2-step process ignition key is a real deal breaker for me.

5). Homelink mirror, I couldn't find this on any Mazda within a 200 mile radius. The dealer said they could install it after I bought the car for about $500 which is about right: $300-$400 plus labor. It is the same Gentex mirror that everyone else uses, so why not just offer the Homelink as the only option since dealers order the most idiotic items for their lot cars?

Everything else about the car was kicka$$ and top notch. I would rate the interior quality, fit, and finish about on-par with that of sub-$40k Audi cars. Everything works great and I love the storage options. The hatch is pretty nifty except for the cheap shoe-string ties that lift the cardboard panel.

I definitely won't be buying a 08/09 MS3 because of the ignition key. I hear the 2010 MS3 may have a keyless ignition system, so that solves my problem but it doesn't look like a sunroof made its way into the design (again). In addition, the dealer informed me that the order date for 2009 MS3's has past, so we're stuck with the stuff on the lots until the 2010 arrives.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That was one factor, the others were the lack of a sunroof, weird tire size (couldn't find any good all-seasons in this size that worked well in snow), and the fact the cut-off date for ordering 09's passed.

If Mazda had equipped the 08 MS3 with a sunroof and common tires, I would have bought the 08 MS3 on the spot and lived with the stupid ignition key.

Can you explain the purpose or significance of that lockout button on the ignition? Why would you like it more than a regular ignition? It makes no sense to me and IMHO, it just gets in the way.
 

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tell you the truth its such a small aspect of the car(turning the car off) it just is a non thought to touch the button while twisting.
its just a lite touch to turn the key, never really thought about it being a buying point of the car. i dont like the sound the seat belts make when you unlatch them, however it did not keep me from gettin a bench mark car.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I used my thumb to push in that button but it wouldn't budge. I ended up using both hands to remove the key.

I've narrowed it down to a MS3 or Cobalt SS/TC but I will definitely wait for the 2010 MS3. I really like the 2010 styling more than the current styling, and I hear the regular Mazda3 gets keyless ignition, so it should transpose to the MS3 as well! The projector Xenon HID's are also excellent and I love the LED tail lights as well. This seems like the car for me, but it just needs to come out already so I can order one the way I want it.
 

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[quote author=twelveinch link=topic=136535.msg2943403#msg2943403 date=1234912827]
LMAO- god damn, you are a picky SOB


Just go by your American potential COBALT......
[/quote]

+1 to that LOL

And oh yeah right GM can't find any upcoming plans to show to us with them using our tax and asking for more money still. I wonder where they put our tax money??? Oh yeah right they used it in making the movie transformers! They should be freaking closed down for lazyness on not even coming up with new cars like Ford. Good luck to you on that if ever buy that Cobalt.
 

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[quote author=shadow1077 link=topic=136535.msg2943576#msg2943576 date=1234916082]
[quote author=twelveinch link=topic=136535.msg2943403#msg2943403 date=1234912827]
LMAO- god damn, you are a picky SOB


Just go by your American potential COBALT......
[/quote]

+1 to that LOL

And oh yeah right GM can't find any upcoming plans to show to us with them using our tax and asking for more money still. I wonder where they put our tax money??? Oh yeah right they used it in making the movie transformers! They should be freaking closed down for lazyness on not even coming up with new cars like Ford. Good luck to you on that if ever buy that Cobalt.
[/quote]

Pretty much. I mean, sure the Cobalt is turbocharged or is it supercharged- I don't remember but who cares because it's still a Cobalt.....crap...

That money goes into the pockets of the greedy lazy f**ck...s
 

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[quote author=dL. link=topic=136535.msg2943594#msg2943594 date=1234916519]
rofl oh noes... ignition key... and I thought I was the pickiest man on earth.

dL
[/quote]

That's what had me laughing cause I thought I was picky but then I read this thread... oh boy...
 

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The automatic transmission Mazda3 does not have that little button, you can just pull the key out so long as it's in park (can't pull it out at all if the car isn't in park). Perhaps that button is supposed to be some sort of reminder to put the car in gear before leaving? I completely agree that it was annoying to press that button at first, but it quickly becomes second nature to hold it down with your thumb. I don't even notice it anymore, honestly.
 

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[quote author=cali_axela link=topic=136535.msg2943620#msg2943620 date=1234917139]
The automatic transmission Mazda3 does not have that little button,
[/quote]

+1
That is just in the manual cars as a reminder, it maybe confusing the first time but it takes no thought once you know it's there just stick your thumb out when you turn the key and you should push it.

As for the moonroof, there is no moonroof because Mazda wanted to improve structural rigidity and save weight, although it would be a nice feature they do not include it because this is their performance car.

Power seats..again weight is the reason why they do not include power seats. Some people seem to think that these kinds of features should be included but for enthusiasts these options are looked down upon. I'm not saying this car is some kind of race car, but Mazda like other true sporting auto makers like to be as bare bone as possible to save weight, and be as track ready as possible. They are all about driving dynamics, as opposed to audi or bmw who are sporty but lean more towards luxury. Hell, even Porsches don't come standard with power seats and your spending 60k plus!

If you wait for the 2010 you will be waiting until at LEAST September but probably won't find a good selection for another month or two and they will definitely be marked up a couple grand for what they call "Adjusted Market Value"..also keep in mind it's the first model year although the same engine and chassis are used beware of any first year defects. Keyless entry should be available on the GT model, but expect a different key for the sport model. Don't expect it to have power seats or a moonroof, it's possible but highly doubted since the car will already weigh more than the current speed.

Using the key button becomes second nature, so I would suggest going back to the dealership and trying it again and again, and if you still have to use two hands I really feel sorry for you :lol:

If I were you I would rethink my decision.. think about the rebates you can get right now and there are a BUNCH of 09's out there so just have your dealership locate one from another dealership if they don't have one you like on their lot.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I couldn't find any rebates for Mazdaspeed3's. Where are you seeing them?
None of them are true red in my area (just black, gray, or white) and it seems like dealers are allergic to ordering the Homelink mirror. Adding this mirror after the fact will cost me at least $300-$400 on top of the $200 I "spent" by buying the car with the non-Homelink mirror. Mazda won't budge on swapping the mirrors. I have never bought a car off the lot before, I have always factory ordered. The salespersons at Chevy and Mazda gave me weird looks when I wanted to factory order - I guess most people don't and settle for stuff that they find in the lots.

I didn't think of the ADM's for the 2010 MS3. Would this really happen? Waiting isn't a problem for me though. I was hoping to get in on any good deals or tax breaks with the new stimulus plan, but it looks like more of the same. My 07 Mustang GT is ready to come out for the spring and summer, I just needed a new car for the winter.

Regarding the sunroof - the Cobalt SS can somehow manage to have structural rigidity with a sunroof and weighs less than the Mazdaspeed3. On top of that, the Cobalt SS turbo is quieter than the Mazdaspeed3 based on magazine tests for interior noise, idle, and at WOT. The Mustang GT seems to run fine with a power driver's seat (6-way power adjustable with electric pump for the lumbar) and weighs 3450 lb, but it is also a bigger car with a heavier engine/transmission/axle assembly.

It'd be nice if Mazda could shave the weight from the rear hatch or something instead of skimping out on power adjustable seats or a sunroof. The natural lighting really changes the atmosphere. It felt like driving in a dark cave with the MS3 versus the Cobalt. Don't get me wrong, the MS3 is a beautiful car. I have nothing but praise for the interior quality.
 

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08 Mazdaspeed3's have a $1000 "Dealer Engagement" rebate and 09's have $500..as well as owner loyalty rebates if you have owned or own a mazda.

When cars as anticipated as the speed are released there are bound to be mark ups or ZERO discounts. It will be sticker price only for quite a few months. When the first gen speed3 was released they had them way overpriced..I saw GT's for 27-29, and sports for 24-26. They might not do this for the new ones because of the economy but don't expect to pay less than sticker unless you wait another year.

The cobalt is already a smaller car than the speed hence why it weighs about 180 lbs less so they can afford to include that feature. As for the quietness of the cobalt yes it may be quieter engine noise wise, but if your coming from a v8 mustang than i'm sure you won't find the speeds louder(compared to the cobalt) exhaust note a problem.

Like I said Mazda is all about driving dynamics, handling, steering, balance, etc. So their goal is to make it as light and rigid as they can for better handling..Your mustang is a muscle car, they are not built for handling and weight is not really something they think about when building them because they just add more power to even it out.

I would love a moonroof but I can live without it. If I had a two door car I would prefer power seats just so it's easier to adjust after letting people in the back or moving to give them more room but in a 4 door it's not really an issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Actually the Cobalt was quieter than the Mustang GT as well. The Mustang GT has about the same interior noise levels as the Mazdaspeed3 (71-72 dbA at 70 MPH vs 69-70 dBA for the Cobalt at the same speed). The Cobalt gets 30+ MPG on the highway, whereas I hear the 2.3 DISI is a gas guzzler on both the MS3 and MS6 (25-26 MPG if you really try hard enough).

The Mazdaspeed3 is shorter than the Cobalt SS coupe, but slightly wider and taller.

My Mazda dealer was accepting the Ford X-Plan, so I don't have to deal with MSRP. Since the 2010 MS3 is debuting at the Geneva auto show on 3/3/09, I suppose it should start to come out around the summer.

Like I said, the interior fit/finish of the MS3 is clearly superior. I just wish they improved the engine and made a few slight tweaks to improve the car.
 

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Don't let a silly little ignition button stop you, My old integra always just let me pull the key straight out, so the button was strange to me on the test drive. Now only 2 months later (but this occured long before 2 months probably only took a week) I don't even think about it. Until you said something I forgot that I even do it every time I get out of the car.

Seems like a lame excuse to me, you're really missing out if you get something of the same price range other then the speed3.

Phillip
 

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I think GM is bailing the performance cars buddy. Check this link out: http://www.autoblog.com/2009/02/18/breaking-gm-disbands-high-performance-vehicle-operations/

If you really want the Cobalt SS, better think about it more. I dont know how much support you would get from them after sales.

As for Chrysler they are in deep shit too... They already have their report: http://carscoop.blogspot.com/2009/02/chrysler-llc-2010-2015-product-plan.html
Even a kid can make that diagram chrysler did. I keep thinking Ford is more worth getting now if you really want american car or something. So your Mustang GT is still good and would be famous. I dont even see their Camaro in GM getting reported for release. The company is really in bad shape. So if you think Cobalt SS/TC is what you want, then better think twice on after support sales when you got the car. There are other performance car you can still shop around aside from Cobalt to compare to MS3. :)
 

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According to Car and Road and Track both the Mazda and Chevy averaged 20.4mpg in their testing.. I tend to average 22 with a 50/50 balance of highway/city. If your looking for a performance car gas shouldn't matter, not that it doesn't help if it can get good mileage but in this category of cars it would not be something that would be the deciding factor.

They say to expect the speeds late summer, early fall. The regular hatchback is supposed to hit showroom floors late spring, early summer, and the sedan in the next couple of weeks.

Mazdausa says the 2010 Mazdaspeed3 will carry on the 2.3 DISI engine so don't expect a whole lot of a change.
 
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