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Josh Rosenberg
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2011 Mazda Mazda2
Features and Pricing


Related: How To Buy A Brand New Mazda Below Invoice

While introduced in Europe several years ago, the 2011 Mazda2 is all new for America and offers some appealing qualities in the economy hatchback segment, including much better handling than one normally expects in this class, good looks, a decent standard feature list, good gas mileage and affordable pricing.

Having some similarities with the new Ford Fiesta (it's built on the same platform) and sporting a similar sleek design, the Mazda2's most compelling attribute is, like the Fiesta, it's impressive-for-an-economy-car performance. In fact, it very well may be the best in its class when it comes to road manners.

2011 Mazda 2

On the downside, however, the Mazda2 falls short when it comes to cargo capacity. While a top competitor like the Honda Fit may lack some of the Mazda2's handling agility, it can accommodate twice the cargo. So, it may best suit car shoppers looking for an economically priced vehicle who also place a higher value on handling over versatility.

Trims, Standard Features And Options:

Mazda has inserted the 2011 Mazda2 just below the Mazda3 in the lineup and it is offered in hatchback form only. It also comes with more standard features than the Mazda 3.

It's classified as a 5-passenger, four-door subcompact hatchback and is available in two trims: Sport and Touring.

Standard features on the Mazda2 Sport include power windows, power doorlocks, power mirrors, air conditioning, electric power steering, keyless entry, a tilt steering wheel, 15-inch steel wheels and a 4-speaker CD/MP3 stereo system with an auxiliary input jack.

Stepping up to the Mazda2 Touring model adds cruise control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, 15-inch alloy wheels, chrome exhaust tips, a trip computer, a rear roof spoiler, upgraded cloth seats with red piping, foglights and six speakers with the audio system.

2011 Mazda Mazda2 rear view

Available factory optional features are few for both models and include a center console with an armrest and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. It is also expected that a removable Garmin navigation system and Bluetooth will be available as dealer-installed options.

Engines, Powertrain And Gas Mileage:

Powering the 2011 Mazda2 is a 1.5-liter inline four-cylinder engine that outputs 100 horsepower and 96 pound-feet of torque. It's paired with a 5-speed manual transmission as standard while a four-speed automatic is optional.

The EPA-estimated gas mileage for the new Mazda2 is a very solid 28 mpg city and 35 mpg on the highway with the manual. The automatic is rated at 27 mpg city and 33 mpg highway.

Safety:

Standard safety features are also impressive for an economy car and include traction control, stability control, antilock brakes (ABS), front-seat side airbags and side curtain airbags.

Government crash tests were not yet performed at the time of this writing.

Interior:

The 2011 Mazda2's cabin is about on par with other hatchbacks in this price range. While the design is modern and attractive, there is an ample use of hard plastics. The front seating is comfortable and supportive and there is generally enough room for taller adults.

2011 Mazda2 interior

And while the rear seats technically offer the most legroom in the subcompact class, they're still quite cramped and hard on adults, particularly on long trips. Cargo capacity comes in at an adequate, but below average for a hatchback, 13.3 cubic feet. This can be expanded to 27.8 cubic feet with the 60/40-split seats folded (they do not totally fold flat), As a comparison, the Honda Fit provides 57.3 cubic feet of storage.

Drive:

The Mazda2's light weight (2,300 pounds) and fiesty engine, particularly with the 5-speed manual transmission, place it at the top of its class when it comes to agility and nimbleness. The suspension settings are well-tuned and European-tested while the electronic steering is quick and precise. The overall result is a higher quality ride with a more responsive feel than one would expect in this class.

Driving with the 4-speed automatic has rougher tendencies when accelerating, as one would expect, so its performance, while still a sporty handler, is not the equal of the 5-speed. The suspension for either transmission is also fairly compliant, producing a driving experience that handles bumps and rough spots with the quality feel of a more expensive car.

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Prices:

2011 Mazda Mazda2:

It should be noted that the following prices were released by Mazda. Such a tight spread between the listed price and invoice price is very unusual. Either Mazda is indeed selling these vehicles close to cost to give it a foothold, or the real invoice price could be something like $1,500 less.


Sport, manual: list price: $13,800, invoice price: $13,718
Sport, auto: list price: $14,780, invoice price: $14,605

Touring, manual: list price: $15,435, invoice price: $15,250
Touring, auto: list price: $16,235, invoice price: $16,037




Other Vehicles Of Possible Interest:

2011 Mazda Mazda6
2011 Mazda CX-9
2012 Mazda3
2012 Mazda6
Used Mazda3
Used Mazda6


Additional Models Of Possible Interest:

Used Mazda5
Used Mazda Vehicles
Used Mazda Miata
Used Mazda RX-8
Used Mazda Tribute





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