2011 Mazda MAZDA2
- Handling/steering, price, fuel economy, standard equipment, interior, manual trans
- Clutch feel, lack of optional features, sometimes-noisy suspension
Purchased As New
I bought this car after test driving several of its competitors including the Scion xD, Chevrolet Sonic and Cruze, Hyundai Elantra, Toyota Yaris, Nissan Versa, and the much-lauded Ford Fiesta. This car won hands down because of it's sublime handling, well-built interior, and reasonable price.
The handling is the best thing about it. The steering is perfectly weighted and the car has excellent grip and well-controlled body motions. It's also been great in the Illinois snow. I went from a V6 to this little 100hp engine and it feels plenty peppy. Fuel economy has been better than EPA estimates. I got over 36 mpg on a 350-mile trip doing 75+ mph most of the way and have been getting about 33 mpg on average in town. Insurance is dirt cheap.
Although I love the feel of the snappy, precise shifter, I find that the clutch is too light (my previous car's clutch felt like trying to smash a brick with your foot though). The throttle is also very light so it took me a while to adjust to driving this car smoothly.
The other main disappointment I have is the lack of some now-ubiquitous features. The Sport model isn't available with cruise control and no Mazda2 is available with a USB port or Bluetooth or telescopic steering wheel. I'd also like the option of a sunroof. The standard features for the price, however, are impressive.
I love the interior of this car though. The materials are nice and the whole cabin has a high-quality feeling even though the plastics are mostly hard. The doors make a solid thud when closed and the seats are wonderful! It feels better-built than its competitors. Also, I'm about 6'1" and I have way more room than I need. Headroom is amazing.
My last complaint is the suspension noise. It's normally unobtrusive. However, I've noticed when the temperature falls below 15-ish degrees, the suspension makes creaking sounds when I hit large bumps.
Overall, these few complaints hardly detract from an otherwise superb little car. I plan on keeping this one for a long time. I'd definitely recommend!
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