Find out why every parent is bound to give the all-new Mazda3 the thumbs up.
Dads like attractive things, right? Yes, mums do as well, I know. So the good news is that there’s a tasty new car on the block – and all parents are bound to like it.
Why? Well, the all-new Mazda3 is possibly the most striking family hatchback to arrive in Britain for years.
Just two powerplants are available. There’s the SkyActiv-G petrol, driven by yours truly, and the SkyActiv-D diesel engine.
The petrol version is sophisticated, and the transmission and platform are decent. So, rest assured, the all-new Mazda3 is a terrific car to drive. It’s wonderfully composed and the ride quality is up there with ‘premium’ badged motors.
You need to move through the gears to keep the pace going, but the six-speed gearbox is a pleasure to use, with a meticulous, concise throw. Sometimes the steering feels like it could be more dynamic, but by family car standards, it’s respectable. The driving position is agreeably accommodating, too.
I drove the mid-spec Mazda3 Sport Lux model, and although you’ll need to spend more on a GT Sport for leather-swathed seats, the materials in the cabin are of a good standard. It’s a far more pleasing place to be than the Ford Focus, and it outdoes the soon to be departing version of the VW Golf.
And the weaknesses? Well, the all-new Mazda3’s sporty shape means room in the rear isn’t vast – and it’s poorly lit back there as well. And at 351-litres, the boot isn’t among the most capacious in the class either.
But mostly, the all-new Mazda3 is a striking, finely made machine that’s worth taking into consideration if you want a family car that stands out from other, more vanilla, hatchbacks.
Fast Facts (Mazda3 SkyActiv-G 2.0 122PS Sport Lux):
- Max speed: 122 mph
- 0-62 mph: 10.4 seconds
- Combined MPG: 44.8 mpg
- Engine layout: 2.0-litre 4-cylinder petrol
- Max. power (PS): 122
- CO2: 119 g/km
- Price: £22,795