2014 Mazda Mazda3

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On my way to work this morning I noticed an elderly man with his hands on his hips. He looked bewildered as he looked across one of the front lawns along his morning route. Following his gaze across the yard I found the cause of his bewilderment, a leaky sprinkler head was spritzing water randomly across his path.

I am almost positive I could imagine his thought process. Could he just do a quick fix and save this person some money by taking matters in his own hands? Either that or he is calculating in his head how much money that is going to cost him since it is probably figured into the association fees or monthly dues charged to him. Could it really be considered golf course maintenance fees? Nevertheless, when you really think about it, the additional costs we pay for amenities can add up over time and become a staggering figure.

With that said, this is the same way I look at the 2014 Mazda 3. I go back to that question “would I fix it or is it just going to cost me more later”. To elaborate, I would probably spring for all of the additional options for this particular vehicle even though it may cost me more now. It may save me some dough in the future and be a good return on my investment.

Not only has it improved in the style department, it has gained desirable options, fuel economy and is perfect for someone who travels a lot. Prices for the all-new 2014 Mazda 3 start at just $20 grand but can quickly climb to over $28,000 depending on your chosen trim level.

The 2014 Mazda 3 is available in a four-door sedan and hatchback body styles. Both are available in 3i and 3s trims that are then broken down further into sub-trims. Improvements to this years model includes stylish new looks and a boost of 17 horsepower and 17 lbs-ft of torque.  Each Mazda 3 trim features an optional 2.5 liter engine option that gets up to 29 mpg city and 40 mpg highway.

The base 3i SV is only available in the sedan body style. Features include 16-inch steel wheels, full power accessories, AC, a folding rear seat and a four-speaker sound system with an auxiliary audio input jack and USB/iPod® user interface.

The 3i Sport bas is offered in both sedan and hatchback body styles and adds cruise, a 60/40-split folding rear seat, Bluetooth® and a CD player.

Stepping up to the 3i Touring base model will get you 16-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler, heated mirrors, push button start, sport front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and a blind-spot warning system with rear cross traffic alert. As an option you can enjoy a sunroof or splurge for the dual-zone automatic climate control, a voice activated navigation system and a premium Bose surround-sound system with HD radio, Pandora and a 7-inch color touchscreen display.

The Grand Touring may cost a bit more but you will not be disappointed with additional features like the GT Technology package which includes the i-ELOOP brake-energy recuperation system. This system helps create energy when the car is coasting and stores that energy in the capacitor for later use. The Grand Touring also include 18-inch alloy wheel, adaptive biXenon headlights, a sunroof, rain-sensing wipers, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather seating surfaces, a rearview camera and a navigation system.

Even with the offering of all of these desirable features, the 2014 Mazda 3 still has some strong competition. Competitors include the Chevrolet Cruze, Hyundai Elantra, Honda Civic and Ford Focus. I have to admit that I feel the overall package for the new Mazda 3 is a step above the rest in both the sedan and hatchback offerings. It may cost a bit more but essentially you are getting a better deal all-around.

 Styling, fuel efficient, comfortable interior, smooth ride

 2.0-liter engine during acceleration

Stashi is an Editor at Driver Pulse, a provider of online automotive editorial reviews and latest news throughout the automotive industry. From the sight of sleek curves to the sound of a roaring engine, old and new, she has a great love for vehicles of all makes and models. What she finds most exciting is that automakers of iconic muscle cars from the past, such as Ford and Chevrolet, are reproducing them for this generation of gearheads. Her dream car, the 1964 or 1966 Ford Mustang, is the ultimate American pony car and paved the way for her love of growling and rumbling engines of old school muscle cars. She spent her whole life in the Midwest and still finds herself playing the same game she once played with her father when she was a young girl. It’s a game her father liked to call “Name that make and model”. This game has become more challenging as the years pass making it a great way to pass the time on long road trips. She believes that automobiles, old and new, are an art form that can be enjoyed by both children and adults.

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