Mazda makes a host of fine vehicles, one of which goes up against the likes of the popular Toyota Camry and Honda Accord.
Their Mazda6 sedan in comparison, excels with its attractive styling, comfort, expressive handling and decent fuel economy.
It’s offered in Sport, Touring, Grand Touring, Grand Touring Reserve, Signature and tested Carbon Edition that’s done in Polymetal Gray exterior paint with contrasting red interior w/black stitching on seams plus metallic black alloy wheels. It’s a real looker.
Mazda interior designers gave the Mazda6 a classy, clean appearance with padded dash, easy to operate HVAC controls, and an 8-inch infotainment display that was embedded ever so nicely within the top of the dash. It’s not obnoxious and is controlled by a rotary mouse on the console. It serves the Bose audio, rearview camera and app functions that includes wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto connectivity.
For driver, front passenger comfort, heated/cooled front seats offer heavily padded softness with a sensible amount of lateral support. The heated steering wheel gets paddle shifters for those who want extra control.
Heated rears are also nicely cushioned and can comfortably seat two adults. A high transaxle hump, however, interferes with leg room for a third adult, but three youngsters won’t have a problem.
A burly transmission shifter commands the 6-speed automatic transmission and it’s flanked by a toggle mode switch for Normal and Sport modes.
Over on the deeply inset analog instrument cluster, it combines a driver information display for alerts, features and functions.
Back in the trunk, that’s 46 inches deep with the rear seats upright or 78 inches with the rear seats flipped, it affords 14.7 cubic feet of total cargo space.
Driving wise, Mazda6 parks easily with a 36.75-foot curb-curb turning radius and its electric steering gives off appreciable road feel. This FWD sedan rides quietly and smoothly on 19-inch Falken tires. And thanks to Mazda’s proprietary G-Vectoring Control Plus, the system provides adjustments to braking and engine torque for controlled driving and assuring response.
Depending on trim model, Mazda6 is offered with a choice of a 2.5-liter, inline 4-cylinder with 187-hp and 186-lb/ft of torque, or as we tested in the sporty Carbon Edition, a 2.5-liter, turbocharged inline 4 with 227-hp and 310 lb/ft of torque for EPA mileage estimates of 23 city, 31-highway mpg. The turbo makes a significant difference, especially in Sport mode that increases engine rpms a bit and the standard 6-speed automatic transmission shift points are held longer. It’s a quick combination for driving enthusiasts.
Mazda6 came with all the latest safety features and functions that today’s car buyers want. Items such as smart brake support, advanced smart city brake support, lane departure warning, land keep assist, high beam control, tire pressure monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, Mazda radar cruise control, windshield wipers de-ice, and more are included as standard. Mazda also offers their 24-hour roadside assistance to go along with their warranties.
For all this, the Mazda6 carried a base price of $32,800. After adding carpeted cargo mat ($100), nav SD card ($400) and delivery ($945), the bottom line reflected $34,245. So priced, Mazda6 is an all-encompassing, content laden midsize. All that’s missing is AWD for us folks here in the Snowbelt.
Mazda6 also comes with the government’s top overall safety rating of five stars; five for driver, four for passenger frontal crash; five each for front/rear seat side crash; and four for rollover.
There’s only one problem. If the impressive Mazda6 meets your fancy, better get one soon as it will be discontinued this year as the company, like many others, are concentrating on crossovers and sadly, electric cars.