The 3 starts with a 148-horsepower 2.0L 4-cylinder engine when ordered with the i package. Order the s and you get a 2.5L 167-horsepower 4-cylinder engine. The all-new SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY package features a special 2.0L 4-cylinder engine, making 155 horsepower. Finally, at the top of the range, the MazdaSpeed 3 returns with a turbocharged 2.3L 4-cylinder engine, making 263 horsepower. The i comes equipped with either a 5-speed manual or 5-speed automatic transmission, while 2.5L models get a 6-speed manual or 5-speed automatic. SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY buyers have their choice of manual or automatic 6-speeds, and the MazdaSpeed 3 is only available with the performance-oriented 6-speed manual. Mileage figures come in at 25/33 mpg for the manual-equipped i, while the manual s is rated at 20/28 mpg. Automatic SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY models achieve an impressive 28/40 mpg, according to Mazda.
The new SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY package works via a lighter combination of parts (4.4 pounds lighter than the 2.0L engine), special multi-port fuel injectors for better fuel spray inside each cylinder, specially designed pistons that allow shorter combustion times and dual sequential valve timing. Mazda says the new engine features a new drive control system as well, which helps to let the engine and transmission work better as a combination, giving the car much better reaction to driver input.
The i comes in SV, Sport and Touring trims, while the s sedan and hatchback can be fitted in Touring or Grand Touring trims. SKYACTIV TECHNOLGY models are available in both hatchback and sedan body styles. Overall, the 3 continues to be practical small car, with enough room for four adults when required.
Standard safety features include advanced front airbags, side-impact airbags, side-curtain airbags, stability control, and traction control. An optional blind spot monitoring system is available as well, but only on Grand Touring models fitted with the Technology Package.
Base models come with cloth upholstery, power mirrors and windows, tilt/telescopic steering column, 60/40 split folding rear bench seat and AM/FM/CD stereo. The i Touring adds niceties like air conditioning, cruise control, power locks, keyless entry, and electronic stability control. The s Touring and s Grand Touring come equipped with a sunroof and 10-speaker Bose audio. The Technology package consists of in-dash navigation, satellite radio, rain-sensing wipers, Bluetooth, HomeLink garage door opener, keyless entry and starting, and bi-xenon headlamps that turn with steering input.