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2014 Mazda MAZDA6

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2014 Mazda MAZDA6 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.5

The midsize sedan segment is filled with all-new versions of popular nameplates this year, but among them, the 2014 Mazda6 seems the most willing to break from the "appliance-car" mode in both its exterior styling and its sports-sedan-inspired handling. In a quest to improve across-the-the-range fuel economy while refusing to sacrifice dynamic handling, Mazda has filled the model with a number of related technologies under the Skyactiv umbrella. The innovations stretch from its two engines to its two transmissions to various aspects of its body and chassis structure. The Japanese carmaker has chosen to eschew a V6 in the new Mazda6, instead offering a 4-cylinder gasoline-fueled powerplant and, eventually, a 4-cylinder turbodiesel. Despite the lack of a V6, the Mazda6 is still a credible competitor to Honda Accord, Toyota Camry and Nissan Altima. In fact, we named the new sedan one of the 10 Best Sedans Under $25,000 for 2014.

You'll Like This Car If...

While many midsize sedans are plain-vanilla, the Mazda6 spices the segment up with dramatic exterior styling, innovative technology and a significant dollop of fun-to-drive.

You May Not Like This Car If...

We'd never say you would be making a mistake if you chose a Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, which are the segment's front-running choices, so if you don't want to stand out a bit, you might shop elsewhere.

What's New for 2014

The 2014 is all-new is the truest sense of the term. Not only is the body shape utterly new, so too are the engines, transmissions and virtually every mechanical bit.

Driving the MAZDA6

Driving Impressions We have to admit there are times when driving the new Mazda6 that we would've preferred the added horsepower a V6 would have given us. But most buyers in the...

midsize segment opt for 4-cylinder power, and the 2.5-liter, 184 horsepower Skyactiv-G engine is a willing enough performer. By designing the body, engine and transmissions at the same time, Mazda engineers were able to tailor the body and chassis to match the other components, resulting in a lighter yet stiffer body, which offers more precise handling. At the same time, the suspension was optimized to enable more confident cornering. We also appreciated the very quick 15.5:1 ratio offered by the fully electric power steering. Those who seek ride comfort above all else might find the Mazda6 a trifle harsh at times, but we will make that trade to gain better handling capabilities.

SKYACTIV-G ENGINE
With an almost diesel-like 13:1 compression ratio, the Mazda6's 4-cylinder gasoline engine wrings eight percent more horsepower and nearly 11 percent more torque than the MZR 2.5-liter gasoline-fired engine Mazda used previously.

I-ELOOP ENERGY CAPTURE
The ingenious I-Eloop system uses a capacitor – not a more expensive and slow-to-charge battery – to gather energy that would otherwise be lost while the Mazda6 is coasting, and the stored energy is used to power ancillary equipment.

2014 Mazda MAZDA6 Details
2014 Mazda MAZDA6 photo Interior

We think the interior of the Mazda6 is among the most upscale in the segment. The dash sweeps gracefully from driver's to passenger's side, but while the passenger side offers only a large expanse of soft-touch materials, the driver is presented with a dense cluster of highly legible instruments, gauges and knobs. It's a not-so-subtle bow to the car's "driver orientation." Another is the Mazda6's small-diameter steering wheel that feels great to the touch. Well-bolstered 6- or 8-way power-adjustable driver's seats are standard on all but the lowest trim level, which is equipped with a 6-way manually adjustable driver's seat. Rear legroom is among the most generous in the midsize segment thanks in part to the car's 111.4-inch wheelbase.

Exterior
2014 Mazda MAZDA6 photo

The Mazda6's pretty face and voluptuous curves immediately capture the attention of midsize-car buyers, who too often are offered safe, conservative designs. Mazda designers took more chances by basing the new model on Mazda's well-regarded Takeri concept vehicle. Among the important elements are the long hood, rearward-set windshield and muscular haunches over the rear wheels. The Mazda6 also echoes and refines the Takeri's bold front end with its sweeping "wing," prominent Mazda badge, and finely sculptured lower valance. From both front and rear, the emphasis is on width, giving the 2014 Mazda6 the curb presence of a more expensive car.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The entry-level I-Sport trim level is equipped with the Skyactiv-G 2.5-liter gasoline engine and Skyactiv-MT 6-speed manual transmission. It also offers 17-inch aluminum-alloy wheels – the largest standard wheels in the competitive set – plus power-operated side-view mirrors and automatic headlight shutoff. Push-button start, cloth seats, power windows with a driver's side 1-touch auto up/down feature, 60/40-split fold-down rear seats, cruise control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, steering-wheel-mounted audio and cruise control functions, and air conditioning with a pollen filter are also standard features. The standard entertainment system is a 6-speaker AM/FM/CD system that can deliver MP3/SiriusXM satellite radio reception.

Optional Equipment

In this era of connectivity, the Mazda6 features all-new infotainment options. A 5.8-inch in-dash touch screen tops the center console, and it controls phone, audio and navigation functions. Other available features include Bluetooth connectivity and iPod audio with the familiar information accessible via the touch screen. Grand Touring models feature an 11-speaker Bose Centerpoint Surround Sound System. When a smartphone is connected, text messages can be shown on the touch screen, and the system can voice the messages and allow users to send replies using fixed phrases. A speech recognition system allows users to search and manipulate audio tracks. The most interesting new bit of optional safety equipment is the Smart City Brake Support system designed to assist a driver in avoiding frontal collisions when traveling at speeds of less than 19 miles per hour.

Under the Hood

At introduction only the Skyactiv-G gasoline engine will be available in the Mazda6. It features a radical 13:1 compression ratio for greater efficiency, facilitated by an all-new exhaust manifold design that necessitated a new body structure. Equally innovative are the Skyactiv-MT 6-speed manual transmission and the Skyactiv-Drive 6-speed automatic. The latter employs aspects of both torque-converter and dual-clutch transmissions to deliver both excellent low-speed feel and admirably quick shifts. The transmissions are lightweight and help the Mazda6 turn in segment-topping gasoline-only fuel economy. Waiting in the wings is the Skyactiv-D 2.2-liter "clean-diesel" engine that will arrive some six months or so after launch.

2.5-liter inline-4
184 horsepower @ 5,700 rpm
185 lb-ft of torque @ 3,250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 25 city/37 highway (manual), 26/38 mpg (automatic)

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2014 Mazda MAZDA6 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.3
Out of 10

Based on 134 Ratings for the 2014 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.4/10
    Quality
    9.4/10
  • Reliability
    9.6/10
    Performance
    9.4/10
  • Comfort
    9.0/10
    Styling
    9.3/10

First Mazda I've Ever Owned

By on Thursday, January 14, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,100

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Fun to drive. Handles well."

Cons: "Voice recognition; No XM Radio in this trim pckg."

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

"Bought my Mazda6 six-speed MT i Sport in this past October. Previously owned a Chevy Cruze 1.8L MT, so I was pleasantly surprised at how much more "grunt" the 6's 2.5L has. I don't worry so much about getting run over when pulling into traffic these days. Most of my driving is in and around town; to/from work in rush hour traffic, so I don't often get the opportunity to let [all] the ponies run. [I did] discover that the 6 is a tad longer than my Cruze was when I tried to "shoe horn" it into my garage. The minor damage \:-/ is only noticeable if you look closely."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Best vehicle I've ever own!

By on Wednesday, January 13, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 24,000

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

Cons: "none"

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

"As has been written in all publications, this Mazda GT has benn the perfect automobile. Great looking and mechanically flawless. Now two years old, still runs perfectly without even a hickup in all that time. Will be trading up to the 2016 with even more amenities. Mercedes has nothing on this car for half the price."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Great car!

By on Tuesday, December 29, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 8,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Fun to drive and great tech features"

Cons: "back seat leg room and road noise"

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

Love the new LED grill lights.

"Love driving this car, I purchased a 2014 and loved it so much I traded it for the 2016 upgrades. Only con I have is lack of leg room for tall people, if you are average size it is just fine."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Love the new LED grill lights.

Zoom Zoom car

By on Saturday, December 12, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 32,000

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
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "fun and safe to drive, design, value"

Cons: "Wind noise, seat comfort, mid console design"

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

"I drive a 2014 Mazda 6 everyday averaging about 100 miles combined city/hwy and I average about 33 miles per gallon, running at 65-75 mph on Fwy roads. I noticed if I drive 55-60 mph on fwy (cruise control on), my gas mileage comes to 36-37 miles per gallon...not a good idea if there is too much traffic and everyone is rushing. I drove this car summer of 2014 from Houston to VA to NY to Quebec, Canada then Montreal then Niagara Falls, then Memphis TN and back to Houston TX for a total of 4200 miles round trip. Not a hiccup. If I need to pass a car, I floor it and tachometer kicks in to 6000 rpm and has enough power to do its job. The feel on the steering wheel is very sporty and secured. There is wind noise alright and the seat may become uncomfortable over long distance driving, but the acceleration, braking and "feeling safe driving at high speeds" compensates for everything. Mazda can improve the puny coin holder and arm rest console design. Made in Japan, sleek, sporty design, 19" alloy wheels, backup camera, blind spot monitoring plus "real transmission" makes this Mazda 6 a no brainer Vis-a-vis other cars like Camry and Accord ( which I have driven as well.)"

7 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Don't believe the mileage estimates, even with xtr

By on Monday, December 07, 2015

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

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Styling, seat comfort, adaptive cruise"

Cons: "MPG, MPG-bad and not close to what Mazda claims,"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 2

"I live in the bay area and drove to LA to buy this car based on one's I had driven and read about. I also wanted the tech package, mostly very good, esp. the adaptive cruise. My biggest and only issue with this car is the Gas mileage. On my last 3 trips, even with the I loop (supposed to be 40/28) I am getting only 32mpg. I took it to Mazda and complained and they only could find my tire pressure a tad low. Great, next trip, 0 city driving, and I get 33 mpg. This is even with cruise set about 70-75 mph. So I am upset with myself for not buying the Ford Fusion hybrid. The car is comfy to drive, handles well, loud on the Hwy, sound system is average even though Mazda makes a big deal about it. Bottom line, would I buy this car again, NO!! I am searching the internet to see if there is a class action with the B.S. mpg info Mazda has published. I am not happy and my last Mazda I will ever buy."

6 people out of 10 found this review helpful

Best handling small car I've owned

By on Thursday, November 12, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Great looks, handling, gas mileage"

Cons: "Road noise. Bluetooth. Interior storage. Radio."

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

"Bought a 2015 Mazda6 Touring in October of last year. Mine is the Pearl White with white accent seats and steering wheel. Really looks sporty. I'm retired so I don't drive in stop and go rush hour traffic, but a lot of my trips now are short ones of under 5 miles interspersed with highway travel when we go to see the grand kids, day trips, etc. I estimate 50% highway and 50% in light to moderate suburban type traffic. Since taking delivery 13 months ago I have not reset the mileage odometer and it currently indicates an overall mileage of 35.8 mpg. On pure highway trips, we get the epa rating of 38 mpg and on several occasions have gotten 40+. I admit to driving somewhat conservatively, usually putting the car on cruise control and the speed set to just a hair below 70 on major highways. Thus far have not experienced any problems with the car mechanical or otherwise. I've owned several small cars since 1981 (Toyota corolla, Ford Escort, Nissan Sentra and Altima) and this is by far the best handling car I've had. Tracks real well on windy, curvy roads. Acceleration is decent but won't win too many road races. Despite the Mazda having 10 more HP, my 07 Altima felt quicker. With an engine compression ratio of 13:1 and skyactive technology kind of thought the Mazda might be a little more responsive."

7 people out of 16 found this review helpful

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