Review: 2019 Mazda3 GT AWD – Part 2

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This is the 2.5l Skyactiv-G 4 cylinder engine that powers the Mazda3 GT AWD. It puts out 186 horsepower and 186 pound feet of torque. Now this engine combined with a 6 speed automatic transmission will move this Mazda3 GT AWD with authority. It’s not head snapping fast. It’s more like the speed builds in a wave fast. Regardless of what you call it, you won’t be complaining about acceleration as you’ll have zero issues getting off the line or you need more power to pass a transport truck on the highway. And not once this week did I ever touch the sport mode switch as I had no need for it.

The six speed transmission that’s mated to this engine is well sorted and always seems to be in the right gear to power all four wheels. In fact the iActiv AWD system is one reason in my opinion that the Mazda3 GT AWD is able to get the power to the road. It constantly monitors the road and shunts power to where it is needed. Not to mention it will assist in keeping you shiny side up when driving in inclement weather. The system worked transparently and without drama during the week that I had the Mazda3.

As for handling, I’ll deal with the elephant in the room. Mazda swapped out the independent rear suspension for a torsion beam suspension in this iteration of the Mazda3. That’s caused the Internet to explode with rage because the belief was a torsion beam suspension was going to make this new Mazda3 handle poorly. And as a result, the Internet thought that Mazda had lost the plot when it came to making cars that handle exceptionally well.

The Internet was wrong.

This Mazda3 carves corners, is extremely agile, and generally handles insanely well. It’s everything that you expect a Mazda when it comes to handling. In fact I seriously doubt that anyone who test drives it could tell that it didn’t have an independent rear suspension, But in typical Mazda fashion, they didn’t stop there. Mazda brings G-Vectoring Control Plus to the party as it helps you to carve corners like you’re on rails. The ride is solid without beating you up. And the steering is sharp and direct. I will also give Mazda credit retaining a lot of road feel in the Mazda3 so that I could feel what the car was doing. The only catch to that is that on rougher roads, the Mazda3 might not be your cup of tea as the vibrations from hard bumps may turn you off a bit. You might want to include some rough roads on your test drive to see if you find this to be an issue.

The brake pedal is firm but easy to modulate. The accelerator pedal is easy to modulate as well. In terms of fuel economy, I am currently getting 8.5 L per 100 KMs which is great as I am driving in city and highway traffic, most of which is in rush hour, and I am making no attempt to drive in any way that saves fuel.

Tomorrow I will discuss the interior which can be described in two words: Class Above. Tune in tomorrow to find out why.

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