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2011 Mazda MAZDA2

Overview
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2011 Mazda MAZDA2 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 6.6

The 2011 Mazda2 makes its way into the small-car category with a big smile and a small engine. Although it shares the same underpinnings as the Ford Fiesta, the Mazda2 carries its own unique powertrain options, suspension setup and sense of interior and exterior style. While its main rivals are the Honda Fit and Ford Fiesta, other competitors include the Nissan Versa, Toyota Yaris and Chevrolet Aveo (as well as its forthcoming Sonic successor.) In this crowd we admire the Mazda2 for its sporty spunk in a field of grocery-getters.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a small car with sporty driving dynamics, simple packaging and a budget-friendly sticker price, the Mazda2 is worthy of consideration.

You May Not Like This Car If...

In a class where options like Bluetooth connectivity and navigation are important to potential buyers, the Mazda2 fails to offer either, which makes rivals like the Honda Fit and Ford Fiesta more appealing.

What's New for 2011

The Mazda Mazda2 jumpstarts the low-priced end of the line-up by offering an affordable, fun and neatly-packaged means of transportation that doesn't stray from the brand's "zoom zoom" mantra. The Mazda2 comes in two trim levels, a well-equipped Sport trim and an even better-equipped Touring variant.

Driving the MAZDA2

Driving Impressions The Mazda2 isn't the fastest car in its class but it is an impressive performer. Mazda focused on saving weight when building the car, and the effort becomes apparent when...

driving it spiritedly. We put the Mazda2 through its paces in a variety of driving scenarios, and it frankly surprised us. Whether it was driving through curvy mountain roads, getting onto the freeway or passing other cars, the Mazda2's sure-footed suspension, grippy tires and eager little engine were up to the task. The steering is responsive, and the brakes are good, too. All of this lightness doesn't mean a compromise in comfort, though, as the cabin was surprisingly quiet even at highway speeds. But we were quick to realize that the Mazda2's main strength is driving fun.

Comfortable seating
After hours of driving and no soreness to complain about, we were surprised at how comfortable the Mazda2's seats were. Most cars in this category have stiff seats with virtually no bolstering.

Five-speed Manual Transmission
Partnered up with the peppy engine, the slick-shifting five-speed manual makes the most out of the car's athleticism.

2011 Mazda MAZDA2 Details
2011 Mazda MAZDA2 photo Interior

The Mazda Mazda2's interior is roomy, well-appointed and, for a small car, reasonably well-isolated. Although hard plastic can be found nearly everywhere in the cabin except for the seats and armrests, the overall sense of functional style makes up for it. The Mazda2's interior is all business with clearly-legible analog gauges and well-placed, user-friendly controls. Along with the comfortable front buckets, the 60/40-split rear bench seat offers room for two adults or three children. Cargo space is minimal compared to that of the Honda Fit and Ford Fiesta, but the cargo area is numerically larger than that of the Toyota Yaris, with 13.3 cu-ft of space with the rear seat up and 27.8 when it's folded.

Exterior
2011 Mazda MAZDA2 photo

While its teardrop shape is nothing new to the "b-segment" category, the Mazda2 does bring its own blend of subtle, yet sporty styling. The Mazda2's bodywork incorporates some "zoom zoom," exemplified by bold fender flares and swoopy side sculpting. A distinguishing feature is Mazda's familiar "smiling" grille. The less-expensive Sport trim version of the Mazda2 offers standard 15-inch steel wheels with full covers. The up-level Touring trim is equipped with similar-sized alloy wheels. "Aggressively cute" might sum up the Mazda2's design overall.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2011 Mazda Mazda2's base Sport trim level comes with the essentials including air conditioning, power accessories, tilt steering column, keyless remote entry and a four-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 sound system. Safety features include stability/traction control, antilock disc/drum brakes with Brake Assist and Electronic Brake Force Distribution and six airbags.

Optional Equipment

Opting for the up-level Touring trim adds some functional interior features, including cruise control, trip computer, upgraded cloth seats with red piping trim, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio and cruise controls and two additional speakers. And on the outside, the higher trim includes a rear roof spoiler, fog lights, chrome exhaust tip and alloy wheels. Options are minimal and are limited to dealer-installed accessories such as an auto-dimming rearview mirror with a compass and Homelink, floormats, a cargo net and Crystal White paint.

Under the Hood

The only engine offered in the 2011 Mazda Mazda2 is a 1.5-liter four-cylinder that produces 100 horsepower and 98 pound-feet of torque. It can be matched with either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic. These aren't especially impressive items, but the Mazda2's light curb weight makes up for them and contributes to the car's overall sprightliness and nimble response. While the manual transmission would be the top choice for driving fun, we did get a chance to try the automatic and found that it was more than capable around town and on the freeway.

1.5-liter in-line four cylinder
100 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
98 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 29/35 (manual), 27/33 (automatic)

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2011 Mazda MAZDA2 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 38 Ratings for the 2011 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.6/10
    Quality
    8.3/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    8.4/10
  • Comfort
    8.4/10
    Styling
    8.5/10

Not bad for the price.

By on Monday, July 06, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,900

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Great price, fun to drive, absolute joy"

Cons: "Could use a Center consul, more horsepower"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I bought this car 3 months ago. Had 26 miles on it. Now almost 7k. Did great on a long trip to Florida from New York. Had to buy seat cushions. After about an hour your butt will be numb. Great size for a single person. Had a car seat in the back the past few days and had to have the driver seat all the up. My Mazda 2 came with Bluetooth. It doesn't always read my iPhone as a phone. Most of the time it will start playing music when I push the answer key. Doesn't like hills. I have the 5 speed manual transmission Pros. Great on gas. Almost 40mpg. Small tank. 11.3 gal. Cost about $25 to fill. Drives great. Great value. Over all a great car. Really fun to drive. Cons. No leg room in back. Trunk is very small. Doesn't like hills. For singles or 2 adults or teenagers. Only 100 hp $20 oil changes are no longer. uses OW-30 full synthetic motor oil. Mazda charged me about $77 for oil change and tire rotation that's after $20 off first service. If you are the only one in this car is will be great."

7 people out of 10 found this review helpful

Mazda2 AT Touring gets an A+

By on Thursday, June 04, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 19,201

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Solid ride & fun to drive. Great value."

Cons: "Trunk light switch. Don't forget to turn it off."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I like the ride and that's what CR reviewers say is bad. It has a sporty ride that feels nice & rubbery on hard edge bumps. I used to race, so maybe that's why I like it. It's funny when reviewers criticize an economy car for lack of roominess, missing luxury appointments, and an absent silent cushy ride. Buy a Cadillac! This is a gas sipper that's solid, reliable and cheap! What do you want... a pony too?"

11 people out of 16 found this review helpful

I have thoroughly enjoyed this vehicle.

By on Saturday, May 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 84,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Awesome deal. No problems !"

Cons: "No arm rest. Not a fan of the traction control ."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I said I would never buy a set of payments, a new car, or a foreign one. I did all 3 and don't regret it one bit. Its been a great car. The gas mileage is awesome. The original tires lasted to almost 50k and the front brakes & rotors went beyond that point. It is a pleasure to drive."

5 people out of 10 found this review helpful

5000+ Mile Update / Review

By on Friday, January 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,500

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Fun to drive, Good commuter car, Cheap"

Cons: "Automatic transmission, Cargo space"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"I though some folks might appreciate a review / update from someone who's owned this car for a bit. Pros: -Perfect for it's intended use as a single person commuter vehicle, ideally in the city. If that is what you're after. this will do nicely. -Handling is sharp and nimble, good road feel through the steering wheel and pedals. Fun to drive in the city. Cons: -Automatic transmission. In a word, it's sluggish. It feels bogged down when you're pulling out of the driveway, and it feels like it's struggling to keep up at highway speeds. Sweet spot is about 40 mph. After about 3,500mi of driving the noise and vibration from it kicked up noticeably too. Definitely makes me concerned about it's long term reliability. Just get the stick shift and you'll be fine. I wish I did... -Not enough space for tall people It's very close though. I'm 6'1" tall, and I *almost* fit in it with the seat all the way back. My left leg runs out of room though and feels mildly uncomfortable on longer drives. Could use about 2-3 inches more space. If you're over 6 feet tall I would not recommend this car. -4 people + highway speeds not recommended With 4 adults in the car this thing feels overtaxed. I've driven 4 (including myself) on the highway several times and the car just feels like it's straining to maintain speed. The extra weight also makes the handling feel a little twitchy, which is unnerving at that velocity. Road noise levels make normal conversation difficult at highway speeds as well. -Dashboard makes occasional popping sound. I believe this is due to expansion/contraction during hot or cold days. Not terrible, but a little distracting. -Gas mileage is mediocre at best. I've been averaging about 30mpg combined, 60% on the highway. Summary: As I said in the beginning. If you intend to use this as a single person commuter car in the city it'll do just fine. It always feels very nice, even a little sporty at city speeds. If you intend to drive on the highway a lot get the stick shift, it has an extra gear (5 spd) resulting in lower rpms at highway speeds. If you're over 6' tall, don't buy this. If you intend to haul 3 passengers a lot, don't buy this. If cargo room is a concern, I don't think you should probably buy this either. Trunk can barely fit a single full size luggage. I still have fun with this car, but you always have to consider your needs and typical usage when looking at something this tiny. It can be a lot of fun to drive, but there are some definite limits to it's capabilities."

23 people out of 34 found this review helpful

A really fun drive

By on Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 12,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "great mpg, very very fun to drive,"

Cons: "wish it had more sync technologies like bluetooth"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I absolutely ENJOY driving this Mazda. It is the first Mazda I have owned, and it will not be the last. It is a wonderful value, great engine, and a FUN drive! Plus, excellent gas mileage. You will not be disappointed with a Mazda2."

18 people out of 31 found this review helpful

Can't beat it for the price

By on Saturday, August 30, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 20,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "gas mileage, fun to drive, very reliable"

Cons: "no clock"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I got this when another car kept having engine problems and I had to get something quickly for not too much money. Being able to park in almost every tight spot is amazing, but also the car is zippy, cute, gets great gas mileage and not everyone has it. I feel lucky to have this car for the price."

14 people out of 22 found this review helpful

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