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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,
This is my first post and I was wondering what all the differences between the i and s are. I drove both and put a deposit down on an i (I liked the s better, but liked the fuel economy of the i) that won't be in for about a month. I got a call from the dealer saying they just got an s in with all the features I wanted and they wanted to know if I'd be interested. The difference in price between the i I want and the s is $700 and they both have the exact same features. So tell me - for the extra money, I get:

-a larger more powerful engine
-different taillights
-foglights
-"carbon fiber" interior accents
-different cloth on the seats
-painted front grille

Is that everything or are there some things I don't know about? Do you think these things add up to a $700 increase in price?
 

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erick.s said:
Hi all,
This is my first post and I was wondering what all the differences between the i and s are. I drove both and put a deposit down on an i (I liked the s better, but liked the fuel economy of the i) that won't be in for about a month. I got a call from the dealer saying they just got an s in with all the features I wanted and they wanted to know if I'd be interested. The difference in price between the i I want and the s is $700 and they both have the exact same features. So tell me - for the extra money, I get:

-a larger more powerful engine
-different taillights
-foglights
-"carbon fiber" interior accents
-different cloth on the seats
-painted front grille

Is that everything or are there some things I don't know about? Do you think these things add up to a $700 increase in price?
What options did you get on the i? The gas mileage is not much different between the two engines.
 

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Kazbaeden wrote in this thread:

http://www.mazda3forums.com/viewtopic.php?t=1151&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

2.0=i and 2.3=s


I'd pick the 2.0, but you get so much more on the 2.3 standard for only about $2500 more.

I went through the spec sheets and made a list of what the 2.3 has over the 2.0. Here it is:

2.3L DOHC 16-Valve inline 4-cylnder engine
Dual Balance shafts
Variable Valve Timing
Sport type front and rear bumpers
Body color sport-type front grille
16-inch alloy wheels
205/55 R16 H-Rated all-season
Halogen fog lights
Clear-lens taillights with silver-color bezels
Dual power remote outside mirrors
Black cloth-trimmed upholstery with red or blue seat inserts
Driver's lever-type seat height adjuster with adjustable lumbar support
Leather-wrapped 3-spoke steering wheel
Leather-wrapped shift knob
Gloss black instrument panel trim insert
Silver-color door speaker bezels and glove compartment latch
Black center instrument panel side treatment
Four full-range door mounted speakers and two tweeters
Air conditioning
Gauge illumination dimming control button (for number illumination only)
Electroluminescent gauges (black-out type) with red and blue nighttime illumination
Power windows with driver-side one-touch-down feature
Power door locks with 2-stage unlocking
Centralized door locking feature for both driver and front passenger
Remote keyless illuminated entry system with "answer back" feature
Cruise control with illuminated steering-wheel-mounted controls
Delayed courtesy lights (dual map & dome lights)
Keyless remote panic button on key fob
 

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SP33D said:
Kazbaeden wrote in this thread:

http://www.mazda3forums.com/viewtopic.php?t=1151&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

2.0=i and 2.3=s


I'd pick the 2.0, but you get so much more on the 2.3 standard for only about $2500 more.

I went through the spec sheets and made a list of what the 2.3 has over the 2.0. Here it is:

2.3L DOHC 16-Valve inline 4-cylnder engine
Dual Balance shafts
Variable Valve Timing
Sport type front and rear bumpers
Body color sport-type front grille
16-inch alloy wheels
205/55 R16 H-Rated all-season
Halogen fog lights
Clear-lens taillights with silver-color bezels
Dual power remote outside mirrors
Black cloth-trimmed upholstery with red or blue seat inserts
Driver's lever-type seat height adjuster with adjustable lumbar support
Leather-wrapped 3-spoke steering wheel
Leather-wrapped shift knob
Gloss black instrument panel trim insert
Silver-color door speaker bezels and glove compartment latch
Black center instrument panel side treatment
Four full-range door mounted speakers and two tweeters
Air conditioning
Gauge illumination dimming control button (for number illumination only)
Electroluminescent gauges (black-out type) with red and blue nighttime illumination
Power windows with driver-side one-touch-down feature
Power door locks with 2-stage unlocking
Centralized door locking feature for both driver and front passenger
Remote keyless illuminated entry system with "answer back" feature
Cruise control with illuminated steering-wheel-mounted controls
Delayed courtesy lights (dual map & dome lights)
Keyless remote panic button on key fob
Yes, but if you get the PWR. + 16" Pkg. on the "i," then a lot of the differences he listed between the "i" and the "s" disappear.

And Erick, I'm in the same situation as you trying to decide between the "i" and the "s." It's gonna be tough. Just make sure you get the ABS/SAB/SAC on whichever model you choose.
 

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We decided to go with the i + Power/16" package. Why?

- cheaper
- slight fuel economy improvement
- lighter = better handling
- didn't want/need all that extra stuff on the s :D

Given two cars that are essentially identical performance-wise, with only some IMO minor cosmetic differences, I'll take the lighter-weight version each and every time. More fun to drive, usually better handling, less crap to break, better fuel efficiency, etc.
 

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margomaps said:
We decided to go with the i + Power/16" package. Why?

- cheaper
- slight fuel economy improvement
- lighter = better handling
- didn't want/need all that extra stuff on the s :D

Given two cars that are essentially identical performance-wise, with only some IMO minor cosmetic differences, I'll take the lighter-weight version each and every time. More fun to drive, usually better handling, less crap to break, better fuel efficiency, etc.
Yes, I agree with you and that is why I'm drawn to the "i." The "i" and the "s" have distinct personalities. The "s" is definitely more "showy" and aggressive-looking. As far as performance, the "s" has a slight advantage in acceleration, slight advantage in handling (with the 17" wheels and performance tires) and probably a tiny advantage in braking. But I'm sure the "i" can be brought up to the same level of handling/braking with some aggressive/performance tires.

Also, I don't particularly care for the cloth in the "s" and definitely don't want leather. The charcoal/black in the "i" on the other hand is very nice. The "i" gauges also look cleaner to me. The other trim features, well, I could care less about.

I really kinda like the understated looks of the "i." Plus, I'll be using it as a commuter car (40+ miles daily) so I don't really need the extras found on the "s."

Also, the "i" will be slightly cheaper to insure and run, I think, as you mentioned.

The "s" appeals to my ego and superficial side, whereas the "i" appeals to my practical side. So far, practical is winning out... :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
It certainly is a hard choice. Basically the i I put a deposit on has the power package, A/C, ABS, and auto tranny. The s the dealer just got in has ABS and auto tranny only. Basically, these cars are equipped identically with the s being $700 more. Are the things I listed the only things different between the two cars? For some reason, I thought the s has slightly larger front brakes as well. Is that true? If I choose the s I can pick it up tomorrow, whereas if I stick with the i I will have to wait an additional 3-4 weeks. I'm just trying to decide if the extra stuff that I would get on the s is worth the money. Will that extra I spend be around when I get rid of the car? These are the kinds of things I'm trying to decide.
 

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Yes, the "s" has slightly larger brakes at all four corners. However, the brakes on the "i" should be perfectly capable. Take the $700 you saved and buy some really nice tires once the time comes. :D

Looks being subjective and acceleration times not withstanding, the "s" has virtually nothing over the "i." In fact, the "i" is better in some areas, as pointed out in posts above.

It just depends on what you want/need, what you think you will be happier with in the long run, etc. Each model has its slight advantages against the other.
 
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