Starting at $ 37,590, the high-end Mazda3 G25 Astina sedan does not push the limits of engineering with its transfer platform and its powertrain, but the Japanese curved tailgate is incredibly finished and refined. Indeed, the new Mazda 3 looks more like a modern prestige German sedan on the inside. With a high level of attention to detail and impressive levels of safety, comfort and technology, she has proven to be a relaxing long distance cruiser.
After spending a week in the 2020 Mazda3 G25 Astina sedan, it is a very powerful machine with one of the most upscale cabins in this category.
The price of $ 37,590 is for the six-speed automatic (the manual is $ 1,000 less), but the price of the car, based on my location near the city of Perth, is $ 42,531.
For this type of part you get a number of luxury features such as a sunroof, adaptive LED headlights, driver fatigue monitor, autonomous forward and reverse emergency braking, parking sensors front and rear with a 360-degree view monitor, 18-inch alloy wheels and a curvaceous exterior design.
A heated steering wheel and 12-speaker BOSE audio system are installed and both work well, and amenities such as dual-zone air conditioning and a driver\’s side auto-dimming rearview mirror are nice touches.
The heated and power-adjustable leather front seats can be ordered in black, white or burgundy.
With a chic exterior design (the Mazda3 won the World Car Design of the Year 2020 award) and a matching interior, the Mazda 3 is a car that owners will be proud to show off.
During a week-long 650km drive in Western Australia, the shapely Japanese hatch revealed only a few issues, such as small trunk volume and a few Apple CarPlay issues.
Other standard equipment (on all Mazda 3 models) includes an 8.8-inch widescreen infotainment display (with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto), radar cruise control with traffic sign recognition (limit of speed), rear parking sensors and a camera, a head-up display, digital radio, digital instrument display, active lane-keeping assist and push-button engine start.
But make no mistake, Mazda has raised the stakes with this generation of Mazda3.
Six-speed manual transmissions are available, but about nine in ten Astina buyers will choose the six-speed automatic transmission.
The only drawback when it comes to standard equipment is the space-saving spare tire under the boot floor. Considering the narrowness of the trunk, a full-size spare tire would eat up even more cargo space.
The 295 liters of trunk space is enough to accommodate a few boogie boards, a large grocery store or two large suitcases. Like Jason Bourne\’s latest films, he is best described as decent, but below par in his category.
However, it should be noted that the best-selling car in this category, the Toyota Corolla, has an even smaller 217-liter trunk.
Trunk space is clearly no longer a deciding factor for most hatch buyers, it seems.
In terms of passenger space, the front and rear seats are roomy, although the headroom is a bit tight for taller people in the back. The rear seats have air vents and cup holders, but no USB charging ports – an important consideration for carrying device addicted kids.
The Mazda3 also has provisions for roof rack mounting points.
Lots of de-tech-shun on this puppy
Similar to many Mazda models, the 2020 Mazda 3 G25 Astina hatch has an excellent range of safety features, including seven airbags (which includes an airbag for the driver\’s knees) as well as autonomous emergency braking (AEB) ) at high and low speed with pedestrian detection.
The AEB even works by reversing the car, a rare feature in the small car segment.
The adaptive cruise control effortlessly makes longer highway journeys by automatically accelerating and braking the vehicle to maintain a safe distance from other vehicles.
The lane keeping aid system is best described as impetuous. At first, it vibrates the steering wheel if you get out of the way. If you continue to drive away, it displays warnings on the digital instrument panel and gently brings the car back into the lane.
The 2020 Mazda3 G25 Astina Hatchback is not an SUV, so it doesn\’t have that amazing SUV-style view on the road ahead, and the curvaceous design inspired by the concept of the car makes average rear vision.
However, the blind spot detection system is excellent, flashing a small signal on the left or right side of the head-up display to tell you if there is another vehicle nearby.
Other nice touches are the “angel” LED lights up front and back which end the flowing bodywork and look spectacular.
This particular model with its metallic polymetal gray (an option at $ 495) and its black wheels looks pretty flash in my opinion.
An electronic parking brake with an auto-hold function comes in handy at traffic lights, and automatic low beam headlights are effective most of the time.
Two not-so-flashy aspects I noticed were the lack of ventilated front seats – they\’re offered in some significantly cheaper Korean cars – and the fact that the infotainment touchscreen system is turned off when the Mazda3 is moving.
The touchscreen infotainment system itself is amazing. It is well integrated into the dashboard and looks more like a work of art than a tablet placed on the dashboard.
It works well with an intuitive menu system, but navigating Apple CarPlay using a jog wheel is boring and time consuming on the go.
Covering around 650km in a week of driving the 2020 Mazda3 G25 Astina flagship, there isn\’t much to complain about.
Overall fuel consumption was 6.2 L / 100 km at the end of the test, with around 80% of highway driving. This is a good thing given that the official combined highway and city of Mazda claim is 6.5 L / 100 km.
The engine runs clean at 6,500 rpm, but at 100 km / h in sixth gear, the engine runs at only 1,900 rpm, which contributes to decent fuel economy.
The 2.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine (139 kW / 252 Nm) pairs very well with the six-speed automatic transmission.
The automatic transmission is generally very smooth, but can also be decisive. Steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters and a sport mode add additional control – they are welcome, as this Mazda3 can be a lot of fun on a winding and rough road.
Unlike the popular Toyota Corolla Hybrid, the Mazda 3\’s powertrain won\’t let you flounder when you need to overtake traffic on the highway or on country roads.
As a long-haul cruiser, the 2020 Mazina 3 G25 Astina hatchback does a great job. The seats are really comfortable with a cushion and a support seat.
After three hours of driving on the west coast of Western Australia from Perth to Dunsborough, there was none of the lower back pain that the less favorable seats could cause.
The front seats are electrically adjustable in eight directions, are heated and have lumbar adjustment.
High quality materials and a good level of tactility make the time spent in the Mazda3 pleasant.
Leather trim covers the seats, steering wheel and door inserts, and soft-touch plastics on the dashboard give the car a premium feel.
Indeed, each press of a button from the automatic windows to the side mirrors and in particular the steering wheel and the heating / cooling controls, is pleasant.
Even the click of the indicator is slightly mute and a bit classy. It’s a great experience.
Recent comparisons have shown that the Toyota Corolla has closed the gap (and may even exceed the Mazda3) in terms of driving dynamics, but I don\’t think anyone will be disappointed with the behavior of this glamorous hatch when driving in the turns at higher speeds. .
The suspension is well sorted and although it has an energetic personality, it is still a comfortable cruiser.
Lots to love
The current generation Mazda3 is an attractive car and the top-of-the-line 2020 Mazda3 G25 Astina hatch (for now) is the best of the breed. It is a very pleasant vehicle to drive, thanks to improved levels of refinement, a quieter cabin and one of the most luxurious interior fittings in its class.
The Mazda3\’s trunk could be bigger, but in terms of driving experience and cabin luxury, it\’s almost unmatched in this category. Only the Volkswagen Golf can compete with it for fit and finish.
And that\’s where the Mazda3\’s problem lies – the cost.
The cheapest Mazda3 ($ 25,999) increased by $ 4,500 over the previous model from 2019, making the cheapest Mazda3 more expensive than the least expensive Volkswagen Golf ($ 25,390).
With a contraction in the new car market, devastating bushfires, the coronavirus, and the growing popularity of SUVs and utes, the Mazda3 is far from its number one sales status in Australia in 2011 and 2012.
In fact, he dropped out of the top 10 altogether.
Maybe it\’s all part of Mazda\’s plan: to move from ubiquity to you want one as long as you\’re ready to pay for it.
How much does the 2020 Mazda3 G25 Astina hatchback cost?
Price: $ 38,590 (plus road charges)
Engine: 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine
Power: 139 kW / 252 Nm
Transmission: six-speed automatic
Fuel: 6.5 L / 100 km (ADR combined)
CO2: 152 g / km (ADR combined)
Security rating: ANCAP five stars (year 2019)