The Mazda3 has been one of our top-scoring small cars for several years, distinguished by agile handling and a well laid out, good-quality passenger compartment. The interior has been further upgraded, but the rear seating area remains a little tight. Road noise is still pronounced. Stability control became standard for all trim lines beginning with the 2011 model year.  Trim-line designations are bound to confuse.
There are 2 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Consumer Reports’ Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey can improve the chances of finding a compatible car match. How? Our survey data reveals whether, all things considered, owners would buy the same car again. The answer to that question is what determines our owner-satisfaction rating, which is a powerful piece of intel because it predicts how well a particular model will satisfy other owners.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Owner Satisfaction with:

Driving Experience

Includes acceleration and handling

What Owners Say

"Great handling. Great acceleration from idle on up. This engine loves to rev."

Anonymous, NY (2011 Mazda 3)

"Quick and nimble. fun to drive"

EDWARD C., OH (2011 Mazda 3)

"It's a very peppy car and accelerates/handles well, but not without significant road noise."

BRIAN M., NJ (2011 Mazda 3)

"Very peppy and fun to drive"

NANCY H., DE (2011 Mazda 3)

"excellent acceleration."

Anonymous, NY (2011 Mazda 3)

"High speed handling needs improvement. Suspension is too tight."

G D., NY (2011 Mazda 3)

"Great handling"

Anonymous, WA (2011 Mazda 3)

"good acceleration. handled much better when i replaced the tires."

Anonymous, ON (2011 Mazda 3)

"Handles very well; easy to drive. the car works with you."

CHARLES C., VA (2011 Mazda 3)

"Very responsive and simply fun to drive."

Anonymous, WA (2011 Mazda 3)

"It's a manual transmission with a lot of torque, which makes it fun and easy to drive. I wish the gear ratio for sixth gear were separated a bit more from fifth gear."

LAWRENCE N., CA (2011 Mazda 3)

"The acceleration is excellent (it is a standard transmission). It is a fun to drive car."

CARRIE S., ON (2011 Mazda 3)

"Good pep when A/C is off. Pep or A/C, not both."

STEPHEN L., CO (2011 Mazda 3)

"fun to drive. Great handling. A little noisy,"

Anonymous, NY (2011 Mazda 3)

"Accelerates and handles great."

PATRICK T., MO (2011 Mazda 3)

"The car has great acceleration on the freeway and handling. Saved my life when someone stopped on the freeway in front of me and I was able to change lanes quickly at high speed."

Anonymous, CA (2011 Mazda 3)

"The car is a turbocharger away from being nearly perfect."

JAMES G., TX (2011 Mazda 3)

"My 2011 Mazda 3 handles and drives wonderfully."

THOMAS C., OR (2011 Mazda 3)

"The engine has a lot of power and handles very well."

Anonymous, MD (2011 Mazda 3)

"Handles great. Fun to drive and peppy with the 2.5 L four cylinder. Mazda's tag line "Zoom, Zoom" nails it!"

Anonymous, MO (2011 Mazda 3)

"Hugs the road well, corners well, accelerates well. Tires slip easily in wet weather."

Anonymous, NJ (2011 Mazda 3)

"Handles very well and has great accelerstion"

Anonymous, CA (2011 Mazda 3)

"Very quick 2.0 liter engine and is a very nimble handling car."

GARY L., NY (2011 Mazda 3)


Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

What Owners Say

"Ride is too harsh. High speed handling needs improvement."

G D., NY (2011 Mazda 3)

"Great handling-steering response"

MICHAEL L., NY (2011 Mazda 3)

"This car has a lot of road noise."

Anonymous, MO (2011 Mazda 3)

"Seating is VERY UNCOMFORTABLE & cramped. Left leg gets bruised because it presses against the door which has protruding elements. Keeping my left leg away from door is tiring & causes cramping. I slide off the seat & can't sit upright with ease. Buttocks sore & cramped after 20 minutes of driving. Imperfect but adequate climate control. Ride is harsh and noisy. Good handling & acceleration."

Anonymous, NJ (2011 Mazda 3)

"Upholstery feels cheap and stains easily."

Anonymous, GA (2011 Mazda 3)

"While the seats are comfortable, they cannot compare to the seats in the Hyundai that I previously owned. Overall, having owned 9 vehicles since 1996 the Hyundai had the most comfortable seats!"

JOAN C., NJ (2011 Mazda 3)

"Road noise is very loud."

JARED H., TN (2011 Mazda 3)

"Lots of tire noise on the highway."

Anonymous, NC (2011 Mazda 3)

"What an amazing vehicle. The only complaint I have is that the lowest fan setting on the AC/heat blows too hard. The lowest setting should be softer."

LAWRENCE N., CA (2011 Mazda 3)

"The seats are a little hard. There is limited leg room for back seat passengers."

CARRIE S., ON (2011 Mazda 3)

"All good. Noise at highway speed- just turn up cd/radio a little"

RALPH M., MA (2011 Mazda 3)

"Add one child car seat to rear and the driver or passenger has no leg room. NONE."

Anonymous, OH (2011 Mazda 3)


Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?

What Owners Say

"Reliable overall"

Anonymous, CA (2011 Mazda 3)

"Good handling when equipped with proper tires. Peppy little car ."

Anonymous, ON (2011 Mazda 3)

"It costs about the same as my 1999 Protege, and is a much better car."

THOMAS C., OR (2011 Mazda 3)

"Awesome acceleration and handling for the price."

Anonymous, NY (2011 Mazda 3)

Would you buy this car again?

2011 vehicles
Ford Fiesta
Ford Focus
Honda Civic
Hyundai Elantra
Kia Soul
Mazda 3
Mini Cooper
Nissan Leaf
Nissan Sentra
Subaru Impreza
Toyota Corolla
Toyota Prius
Volkswagen Golf
Volkswagen Jetta
Percentage of owners who would definitely purchase that same vehicle again. Owner-satisfaction Ratings are determined by the percentage of those who answered "definitely yes" to the question asked by the Consumer Reports Annual Auto Survey "Considering all factors (price, performance, reliability, comfort, enjoyment, etc.), would you get this car if you had to do it all over again?". If we don’t have sufficient data, a similar model might be used to form the owner-satisfaction score.
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