Mazda 3 (2004–2009)

Model History

September 2003

New Mazda3 unveiled

Mid-size Mazda replaced 323 on same C1 floorpan as Ford C-Max, Volvo S40/V50 and Focus II. Length 4,420mm (14’ 6”, Width (not including mirrors) 1,755mm (5’ 9”), Height 1,465mm (4’ 9”). 80bhp 1.4, 98bhp 1.6 or 150bhp 2.0 chain cam petrol engines. Choice of 5-door hatch or 4-door saloon. Saloon by far the better looker and stiffer, better handler.

European launch Frankfurt September 2003. UK launch December 2003.

PSA/Ford 1.6 diesels from Spring 2004. 1.6 110PS diesel has 181lb ft torque at 1,750rpm, does 115mph, 0-60 in 11 seconds, 56.5mpg and emits 138g/km CO2. But has same 'feel-free' electro hydraulic steering as 150PS 2.0 petrol versions. 3rd top marque in 2004 J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Survey.

Mazda3 MPS launched Geneva Show March 2006. Called Mazdaspeed Axela in Japan, Mazdaspeed3 in North America. 2.3-litre MZR DISI turbo petrol engine.

March 2007

Range facelift

Belt cam 143PS MZRCD diesel announced. In UK from April 2007 in TS2 and Sport trim. Maximum Torque of 360Nm at only 2,000 rpm. Strong performance (0-to-60 mph in 9.6 sec) with 47.1mpg combined economy. Priced from £16,735 (on-the-road), until 30 April 2007. Sport trim very worthwhile as the car feels very taught with good steering feel and nice handling. This is Mazda's own 2.0 diesel, not the 2.0 litre PSA/Ford diesel engine.

April 2007

Mazda 3 MPS Sport Aero with dropped suspension, big rear spoiler and special aerodynamic mirrors also available from April 2007. Seems to go and handle a bit better than standard MPS, for just £500 more at £19,495.

June 2007

Mazda3 1.6 Tamura Spring Special announced with additional features that include a body-coloured sports styling kit (new front and rear aero bumpers, side skirts and rear spoiler), front fog lamps, larger diameter 16-inch alloy wheels, a chrome exhaust trim, unique Tamura exterior badging and a choice of two colours – Aurora Blue Mica or Galaxy Grey Mica exterior paint finish – free of charge.

The additional equipment of the Tamura package is worth £2,835. Powered by a 105ps, 1.6-litre petrol engine with five-speed manual transmission, this Summer Special model costs £13,795 – only £455 more than the donor car, representing a saving of more than £2,380. Only 700 Mazda3 Tamura cars will be offered. Standard spec of base car already includes: black/red interior trim, climate control air conditioning, radio/CD with steering wheel controls, electric front windows, remote central locking with a Thatcham Category 1 alarm and immobiliser, plus electric and heated door mirrors.

May 2008

Mazda 3 range updated

* Specification enhancements offer greater value for money
* Mazda3 TS is replaced by Mazda3 Takara
* Mazda3 range consolidated to 14 models from 19
* Range retains the entry price point of £11,440 on-the-road

The Mazda3 Range for 2008

Mazda3 S
1.4-litre 84ps Petrol, 5-door OTR £11,440
1.6-litre 90ps Diesel, 5-door OTR £12,930

What does a Mazda 3 (2004 – 2009) cost?

List Price from £21,840
Buy new from £18,726
Contract hire from £201.60 per month