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Discussion Starter #1
... earlier this year I had the chance to drive the GTS with 2.5 and paddles, very impressive, and two days ago I got to drive the 6 speed Manual with 2.5 ... great, I think it could be a great car for Autocross, It rotates really well . I still undecided about which one would be better because the one with paddles shifts really fast and accelerates fast on the S mode.

They had this 6 speed with appearance package on the showroom floor:



Gorgeous !!

Andres
 

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+1 stick is a more fun driving experience imho.

I would say get the one with lower curb weight: also probably the stick.
 

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stick stick stick stick stick stick stick stick stick stick stick stick.

That is all.
 

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New Mazda3

Looks like at least a 200# difference from the "i" to the "S".

That, and the 106" wheelbase.:ugh:
 

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It's a shame they aren't offering the S with the sport trim. That's just the best recipe if you ask me. Big (by comparision lol) motor, cloth interior, and a radio.
 

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The appearance package really adds a lot of style to that car IMO. Especially in white. I'll tell you now that it would be a great daily driver and reasonably competitive autocrosser, but will never be as fun as your 2. Weight really is everything...well that and wheelbase.
 

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I have a 2014 I-Sport stripper with a stick and I can attest it feels like a beast on the AX course compared my 2006 Mazda3 (and not in a good way). The thing drives and feels big compared to my 1st Gen, compared to the Mazda2 it has gotta feel like a limo. Can't imagine adding another 200lbs on top will do it any favors. I'd think this one over carefully Andres ;).
 

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I think I read way back when, that the latest 3 had double the caster of the 1st and 2nd gens plus crash bolts strut mounts..so maybe you could coax something out there?
 

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I think I read way back when, that the latest 3 had double the caster of the 1st and 2nd gens plus crash bolts strut mounts..so maybe you could coax something out there?
The 3rd Gen's do have a lot of caster (6 degrees) so that is one thing it has going for it.

Yes and the struts on the 3rd Gens bolt on at the bottom. Problem is crash bolts aren't legal for all cars. If they aren't endorsed by the factory in either the owners/service manual or TSB then you are SOL in Street class. I haven't really checked that much into it, but I'm pretty sure no documentation currently exists to green light the use of camber bolts in the 2014+ Mazda3.
 

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I like that I have -1.2 and 4.2 caster on my 08 now at stock height. Yay for offset bushings and slotted upper holes :) lol

6 deg caster is nice and all, but it's H street. Against the mini..and now the Fiesta ST. that's like a butter knife at a gunfight
 

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Anyone going to campaign a new MZ3 in STF? Aren't they as light as the first gen with more power? Seems like a winner :)
 

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My impression is the chassis has improved significantly. I think it's a strong candidate, especially with the 185-hp 2.5 and the front MacPherson set-up has gotten simpler with the two bolt attachment.
 

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Anyone going to campaign a new MZ3 in STF? Aren't they as light as the first gen with more power? Seems like a winner :)
According to MSN Autos....

MZ3 S 4 door = 2947
MZ3 i 4 door = 2854

My Gen 1 2006 2.0 = 2600#
 

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It feels big--but the 2.0i stick is actually lighter than the earlier 2.3 cars by a few pounds (2740 in similar H Street autocross trim--->Jack Burn's old 2007 vs my 2014)
 
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