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Used Mazda 3 review: 2009-2011

2009-2011 Mazda3 SP25
EXPERT RATING
8
Graham Smith road tests and reviews the used 2009-2011 Mazda 3 SP25.

New

Sporty versions of popular small cars have always been popular with buyers, they can traced all the way back to the Mini in the 1960s when British racing car maker, John Cooper tweaked a humble little sedan and made it a sporting hero for the masses. Other carmakers followed in time and the hot hatch was born.

While they were great fun for the young they were a little hard-edged for most people who were satisfied with the look and didn't care too much for the go-fast part of the deal.

The result is a car like the Mazda3 SP25; a car that delivers the sporting looks without the downsides of a truly hot ride. The SP25 is more marketing than mumbo, but it still packs enough thrills to put a smile of the faces of its buyers.

With the addition of more aggressive looking bumpers and side skirts that gave it a lower look, as well as sportier seats, it had all the elements needed to pass for a hot hatch.

There was also had a decent list of standard features, including a good-sized multifunction display, sat-nav, dual-zone air-conditioning, a CD stacker and six speaker sound, enough to appeal to anyone wanting a little luxury.

Based on the regular Mazda3 the SP25 had the same mechanical package as the run-of-the-mill models. Mind you even they were pretty good.

The SP25's power came from the same 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine that delivered 122kW and 227Nm. It has to be said that Mazda engines were more adequate than exciting, but the larger 2.5-litre unit that came with the BL model had more than enough torque to be useful if you chose to drive it to the torque curve. The transmission choices for the front-wheel drive car consisted of a five-speed sports shift auto and a six-speed manual.

Below the sheetmetal and added plastic was a chassis worthy of a sports car. The SP25 was nimble and responsive, and fun to drive if you were inclined to hunt it around corners. The ride was a trifle hard, but not hard enough to really complain about.

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Now

Mazda has become the darling of the new car crowd in recent years, and for good reason. Not only has the company produced some very good models, the 3 included, it has done so with good quality that has translated into commendable reliability over the long term.

We receive very few complaints about Mazda from CarsGuide readers, which is always a good indication of what's happening in the real world. Engines, gearboxes, drivelines are all solid and they give little trouble if serviced according to the Mazda service book.

Accordingly, it's important to check a car's service record to ensure the servicing has not only been done, but that a creditable garage has carried out the work.

Pricing

Year Price From Price To
2011 $4,400 $13,860
2010 $3,800 $12,100
2009 $3,100 $12,100

View all Mazda 3 pricing and specifications

Pricing guides

$9,990
Based on 339 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$4,300
Highest Price
$15,995

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
Diesel 2.0L, Diesel, 6 SP MAN $3,900 – 6,270 2009 Mazda 3 2009 Diesel Pricing and Specs
Maxx 2.0L, ULP, 5 SP AUTO $4,000 – 6,490 2009 Mazda 3 2009 Maxx Pricing and Specs
Maxx Sport 2.0L, ULP, 6 SP MAN $3,700 – 6,050 2009 Mazda 3 2009 Maxx Sport Pricing and Specs
MPS 2.3L, PULP, 6 SP MAN $6,300 – 9,790 2009 Mazda 3 2009 MPS Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
8
Graham Smith
Contributing Journalist

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