Car Comparison: 2020 Mazda3 vs. 2020 Subaru Impreza

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The CX-5 might be Mazda’s best-seller, but the new Mazda3 is a big deal — via drivingdotca

NT: The CX-5 might be Mazda’s best-seller, but the new Mazda3 is a big deal, and for a good reason — despite a few foibles, the latest 3 punches well above its weight with a classy interior, much improved driving manners, and perhaps above all, optional all-wheel drive. That’s a pretty big ace up its sleeve; the mere thought of four-wheel traction offered on something that isn’t a Subaru, should be enough to put Subaru on notice.

NT: That’s as good as place as any, old dude. Despite the refresh for 2020, the Impreza largely remains the same under the skin. That means power still comes from a 2.0-litre boxer four-cylinder, rated at 152 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque.

BH: Not bad at all, though this generation of the Mazda3 doesn’t quite have the inherent zippiness of models past, and the added weight of the all-wheel drivetrain also takes some of the edge off the handling. Even compromised, though, it still feels pretty good, albeit with a bit more road noise than the Impreza. Having an extra 34 hp makes a difference, certainly in outright acceleration — the Mazda GT is about a second quicker to 100 km/h — but also in passing power.

NT: I think you are imagining things, old dude. I wouldn’t say one is better than the other, but the latest Mazda3’s ride quality and comfort is a considerable improvement over the last one. There’s much less road and wind noise, and the suspension does a better job at filtering out bumps and rough pavement.

BH: Tight rear-seat space seems to be a thing with most Mazda vehicles. It’s either an issue or it isn’t, but the same could be said of Subaru and its function-over-fashion interiors. Everything is where it should be — always a good decision — yet there’s little attempt to provide any real sense of occasion. No shiny trim bits, no leather. Still, there’s little lacking other than a heated steering wheel, which would be a nice addition.


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