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2010 Mazda MAZDA3

Overview
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2010 Mazda MAZDA3 Review

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Mazda's best-selling model, the MAZDA3, receives a major makeover for 2010, starting with the high-volume four-door sedan and five-door hatchback. Based on an enhanced version of the previous platform, the entire 2010 MAZDA3 family maintains its same wheelbase and track dimensions but boasts a stronger unit body, revised chassis setup, all-new exterior and interior designs and an even nicer selection of standard and optional equipment. Trim designations carry forward, with the sedan available in 2.0-liter "i" models in SV, Sport and Touring configurations, and the 2.5-liter "s" in Sport and Grand Touring versions. The wagon is available only in the latter two "s" models. This comprehensive revitalization program has made a solid package even stronger and should ensure the 2010 MAZDA3 remains a strong rival to the Ford Focus, Honda Civic, Nissan Sentra, Toyota Corolla and Matrix and Volkswagen Jetta and Rabbit.

You'll Like This Car If...

Fans of the previous MAZDA3, who want something that offers a new level of style and sophistication with better overall performance and handling, plus improved fuel economy, should be well pleased with the 2010 version.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If Mazda's new 21st-century take on the Happy Face front end seems a bit too much – or if you really need something with more rear seating space – the 2010 MAZDA3 might not be the right choice.

What's New for 2010

The MAZDA3 gets a complete reskin and interior redesign, multiple chassis tweaks and significant upgrades to the engines and transmissions.

Driving the MAZDA3

Driving Impressions An enhanced level of zoom-zoominess is clearly evident from the very first mile in any 2010 MAZDA3 model. The reinforced unit body and retuned suspension increase agility and handling precision...

while maintaining good overall ride compliance whether you're just touring or tossing it about with real intent on your favorite back road. Even the 148-horsepower 2.0-liter engine has sufficient muscle to handle either the manual or automatic transmission, although those folks with more dedicated enthusiast leanings should seriously consider stepping up to the 167-horsepower 2.5-liter engine that's even more at home with either transmission. We found the driver-selectable stability and traction controls permitted a fair amount of fun before intervening as programmed, and the anti-lock brakes have a linear feel. While the cabin dimensions may be virtually identical to the 2009 in both sedan and hatch configurations, there's definitely a greater level of sophistication to the 2010 package and notably better isolation from both noise and vibration.

Adaptive Front Headlamps
The first-ever application on a compact vehicle, these blue-white bi-xenon high and low beam headlights are standard on MAZDA3 Grand Touring models. Their inner beams can swivel by 15 degrees to look deeper into corners and they feature self-leveling to prevent dazzle.

Super-Efficient Catalytic Converter
All MAZDA3s are fitted with a new catalytic converter featuring a Mazda-patented single-nano-particle substrate element that requires 70-percent less precious metal than used in the component it replaces to do an even more effective job of cleaning up the exhaust gases.

2010 Mazda MAZDA3 Details
Interior

The 2010 MAZDA3's all-new look raises the image index with a host of nice touches that you'd expect to find in more expensive vehicles. There's a single-piece soft-touch dashpad over easy-to-read analog gauges and easy-to-reach main controls and switchgear, while aluminum trim accents add a touch of understated flash. The Multi-Information Display – with or without optional navigation – is controlled by steering-wheel switches on all "s" models. Redesigned bucket seats offer more comfort and support up front and all MAZDA3s get a 60/40 split-folding rear bench that will accommodate two average-sized adults or drop flat to add even more utility to the basic 11.8 cubic-feet trunk or 17.0 cubic-feet cargo bay.

Exterior
2010 Mazda MAZDA3 photo

To create a unique look for its best-selling model, Mazda gave the MAZDA3 various "motion and flow" styling elements from the Nagare concept car, as well as more established cues, such as RX-8-flavored fender sculpting. The oversize grille element is, according to Mazda, "purposefully polarizing" to more effectively set the MAZDA3 apart from its competitors – as well as from the MAZDA6. A rising beltline gives both the sedan and wagon more aggressive stances while high-profile front and rear lighting treatments impart a premium finish to the package. All "i" models of the MAZDA3s come with 205/55HR16 all-season tires on steel or aluminum wheels, while the "s" models have V-rated 205/50 tires on 17-inch alloy rims.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Even the base MAZDA3 "i" SV sedan has impressive standard equipment, including anti-lock disc brakes, front, front-side and side-curtain airbags, a tilt-telescoping steering column, AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio, power windows and mirrors and variable intermittent wipers. With the "i" Touring level, that list adds stability and traction controls, cruise control, alloy wheels, air conditioning, power locks with keyless remote and Bluetooth connectivity. While the "s" level has the more potent 2.5-liter engine in place of the 2.0-liter powerplant of the "i" model, and gets a Multi-Information Display, trip computer, sport seats and enhanced trim items, only the Grand Touring versions feature dual-zone automatic climate control, bi-xenon Adaptive Front headlights and heated leather seats with eight-way power on the driver's side.

Optional Equipment

All but the MAZDA3 "i" SV model offer a five-speed automatic transmission with manual mode in place of the standard manual gearbox, and the availability of special Crystal White Pearl paint. An aptly named Moonroof and Bose Package, that includes a 10-speaker Centerpoint Surround Sound system, can be fitted to all Touring-and-above MAZDA3s, but the Tech Package (navigation system with 4.1-inch color screen, SIRIUS Satellite Radio, advanced keyless entry, pushbutton start and perimeter alarm) is limited to "s" models – but also requires the Moonroof and Bose combo. A six-disc in-dash CD changer with MP3 capability is optionally available, while SIRIUS is offered as a dealer-installed accessory.

Under the Hood

Two engines and three transmissions are part of the revitalized MAZDA3 lineup for 2010. The "i" models (SV, Sport and Touring) retain the same 148-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine used previously, but it can now be teamed with the carryover five-speed manual transmission or a new five-speed automatic that replaces the optional four-speed unit used last year (the SV remains manual-only). The automatic route increases city and highway EPA numbers by one and three mpg, respectively. The latest "s" models (Sport and Grand Touring) replace their 2009 156-horsepower 2.3-liter engine with a 168-horsepower 2.5-liter powerplant that's also used in the MAZDA6. Beyond having more power than its predecessor, this tech-rich design is smoother, quieter and develops 15 percent more torque for quicker acceleration, whether it's paired with the standard six-speed manual or the optional five-speed automatic with its manual-shift capability.

2.0-liter in-line 4
148/144 horsepower (Federal/PZEV) @ 6500 rpm
135/132 lb-ft of torque (Federal/PZEV) @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 25/33 (manual), 24/33 (5-speed automatic)

2.5-liter in-line 4
167/165 horsepower (Federal/PZEV) @ 6000 rpm
168/167 lb-ft of torque (Federal/PZEV)) @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/29 (5-sp manual), 22/29 (6-speed automatic)

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2010 Mazda MAZDA3 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.9
Out of 10

Based on 336 Ratings for the 2010 - 2013 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.1/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.2/10
  • Comfort
    8.7/10
    Styling
    9.0/10

2010 Mazda3 Sedan

By on Monday, July 14, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 44,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "very fun, safe, relaible, cute, comfortable,"

Cons: "can not change radio(but system is great so idc)"

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

"I love this car! I've owned various Chevy's, a Ford,and a Dodge. The mazdas are still my favorite! I've owned an 05 Mazda6, and now my '10 Mazda3. Both were so much fun to drive, they are very compfy, and good on gas. Everyone that gets in my car loves the interior and how sporty it feels and looks. I will own this car until it no longer starts and then I will make it run a little longer! Once a person drives a mazda they fall in love! It happened to me and it will happen to you!! oh! and it was great this past winter, which was horrible, and I just had all-season tires on it."

4 people out of 6 found this review helpful

first-time Mazda buyer, loving it!

By on Sunday, July 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 21,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "peppy, cannot beat the options and style at $$"

Cons: "dog catches paw in flip-cover in center console"

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

"I thoroughly researched this vehicle and remain thoroughly satisfied 7 months into owning the vehicle."

Good car, loud road noise, poor lumbar,

By on Friday, July 11, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 13,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "good price and fun to drive."

Cons: "road noise"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"You have to test drive this car on highway. You will not like the road noise. Just driving around dealer will not give you the overall picture of road noise. Change holder is sized for a childs hand. No back seat leg room and its kind of embarrassing when guests climb in and are so scrunched. But, you get what you pay for an for about $20K, I would buy it again."

Nice body shape. Great MPG.

By on Tuesday, June 24, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Excellent MPG, nice body shape, rims easy to wash."

Cons: "Poor console, bad factory paint,"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"2013 Madza3 was attractive and very effective on MPG. Mine was 36.9 average since I bought it. Sometimes it hit 41 MPG per a tankful. What I am disappointed about my car is the quality of paint and clearcoat job at factory. Too thin coats! I could see the orange peels in paint condition. I understand that the water-based paint (oil-based now outlawed) may be the reason, but I had seen other brands with thicker clearcoats. The seat was too low so I adjusted the position to highest point. So I could climb out of car easier, but the vision became limited as my head reached to the ceiling. Overall, I am learning to love my car more after I missed Toyota Matrix a lot."

12 people out of 25 found this review helpful

Comfortable, reliable, economical

By on Tuesday, June 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Sporty, peppy, comfy for long rides, economical"

Cons: "Check for cruise! No guts in snow."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I have been happy with my Mazda 3, with two exceptions: 1.) It did not come standard with cruise control, which I missed at the dealership and discovered AFTER signing and driving off the lot, and 2.) I wish the vehicle was holding it's resale value better. It's been a peppy, fun-to-drive and reliable car with sporty good looks, but I hope to trade in on a 4WD vehicle for this winter, as the low clearance, front-wheel-drive did not serve me well over this past winter of deep snow in Minnesota's northland."

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

No leg room in the back seat

By on Friday, May 30, 2014

I owned and sold this car
Reason: bad gas mileage

10 5.0
overall rating 5 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
5/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "Car looks very sporty, and has good pick up"

Cons: "Absolutely no leg room in the back"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 3

"I owned a 2002 Mazda Protege5 before this car, and the first thing I noticed is that this 2010 Mazda3 was the exact same size length wise but there was considerable less leg room in the back. It also wasn't the same quality. The seats were squeaky for some reason, I took back to the mazda dealership a couple times and they re-adjusted it but it would keep squeaking. The car came with premium bose sound, but when I would bump it, there was rattling coming from inside the dash. The other thing to note is this car came with Nav, well the Nav chip is a SDCARD that sits on the dash. During the summer time, the first year we had it the SDCARD failed. I took into the mazda dealership and told me that was a common problem with this car. Because the SDCARD would go bad from the heat. They replaced it but recommended I go buy and extra one and make a copy of it. The NAV does not come with free updates, you have to purchase a new one every couple years for about $125. Which is pretty funny because that how much a new stand alone nav costs nowadays. From the get go the mileage was rated at 30 per gallon in the city, well it was more like 23 per gallon. I didn't drive the car that hard and was checking to see it would get better but it didn't. I swapped our air filter with a KN performance one to see if would getter better, but it stayed about the same. The factory tires on the car were shot after 20k. At 37k, we decided to trade this in because the tires needed to be replaced again, from the outside the wheels looked new, but the inside there was considerable wear. I was surprised to see this because we had the wheels aligned when we got the new tires. Any ways, this car is perfect if you don't mind getting new tires every 20k or so miles. And if you need this car for just two people, or two people and two small children since there is no leg room in the back. Gas mileage is about 23 per gallon in the city, I'm pretty sure it was rated at 30 so be aware of that."

3 people out of 9 found this review helpful

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