1: Engine is Weak, but Great on Gas
This was my first taste of the Mazda3’s responsive, rev-happy 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. On the other hand, with just 155 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque, the engine does take its time to get the car moving at highway speeds. Even dropping to fourth gear to make a pass is unrewarding in terms of thrust, so it’s safe to say if you’re hungry for speed, the 2.0-liter isn’t enough.
But there’s an upside. Instead of focusing on quick acceleration, the 2.0-liter is smooth and especially fuel friendly. Averaging 35 mpg during our week of testing its clear that saving money is one of the main priorities with this car.