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Review of 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3

2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 comes highly recommended, and is a five-of-five star vehicle if you want to know my personal opinion. The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 offers five-star acceleration, handling and price. The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is unusually livable, especially for a vehicle designated to be ultra-high-performance in nature. On the other hand, for a high-performance car, the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is a little too much like a traditional car for me. Still, this vehicle provides excellent power and handling for its price, and is surprisingly refined for what it is.

When I first test drove the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3, I was expecting to find a vehicle that was unacceptable in one way or another, simply because it was presented to me as a turbo-charged, ultra-high-performance variant of the traditional compact hatchback offered by Mazda. I was pleasantly surprised when I test drive the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 for the first time, for a number of different reasons that I’ll explain more fully below:

Styling – The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 looks a lot like the traditional Mazda 3, which is the vehicle that it is essentially based on, but with larger alloy wheels and a subtle body kit addition. I have never really been fond of the exterior of the Mazda 3, but I was pleasantly surprised with the body styling of the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3, which were much easier on the eyes in my opinion. The interior of the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is also quite similar to the vehicle on which it is based, with a subtle sophistication and just a touch of luxury. You can expect to find a large change in the form of sport bucket seats with leather bolsters and center panels of cloth rather than the traditional leather.

Accommodation – You can expect to sit a little lower in your 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 than you would in the Protégé, but this isn’t a bad driving position at all. The seating position in the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is probably as close to perfect as anyone can get, offering you seating that is neither too high nor too low. The driver’s seat in the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is bolstered more securely than in the traditional Mazda 3, and you do not feel locked in like in other vehicles such as the SRT vehicles from Dodge. You should not have any problem with sliding around through tight curves in this vehicle, which is a nice improvement. The seats in the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 provide enough room and comfort for most moderately sized adults to fit into, though they are a tiny bit low to the floor for anyone who needs a lot of leg room.

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Driving and Handling – The driving experience with the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is probably the most important part of the review. The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is capable of producing as many as 263 horsepower, which tends to be too much but can be limited by limiting torque when in the first few gears. Torque steer in the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is actually pretty minimal, which I preferred. The only time that I really noticed a difference in torque steer was when accelerating through a tight turn, as the turbo would often kick in just as I was shifting into a new gear. The wheel would pull a little when this happened, but this is a practice that can be easily avoided in time.

On the other hand, any time the wheels were pointed straight ahead, there was nearly no torque steer at all, which was really nice. The front end does not tend to get squirrelly or light under hard amounts of acceleration like with many other powerful front-drive vehicles. I was definitely satisfied with this aspect of the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3, and it is a definitely improvement compared to other Mazda vehicles in the past.

Once of the biggest consequences that you will find with the turbo in the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is that only a little bit of throttle will do you fine during normal driving. You really never need to rev past the 4,000-rpm mark, unless you really want to pick up quick speed. The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is pretty good at accelerating very quickly all around, and without much necessary drama. This can actually be both good and bad, because drama easily comes in both varieties.

I’ve heard that many drivers have complained about the shifter in the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3, but I did not find a problem with it, so perhaps Mazda has made a change since these negative reviews were written. The shifter felt pretty okay, although the throws seemed to be a bit long which is the case with most stock car shifters these days. You can probably fix much of this by choosing an aftermarket shifter over the one that comes with the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3.

Pricing and Price Comparison – The list price for the 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is about $2,500 less than what you will pay for the Subaru WRX. Adjusting for difference in features does not have much of an effect on the pricing, either. The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 comes with about $600 more in additional equipment standard from the Caliber SRT4, which retails for about $60 higher. But prices are frequently changing and ultimately the price of your 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 will depend on the features that you purchase.

The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 is not much different from the traditional Mazda 3, but it does come with around 100 more horsepower, a little more turbo lag, and much heavier steering to set it apart from its traditional predecessor. The 2008 Mazda MAZDASPEED3 represents what I feel to be a very sturdy effort on Mazda’s behalf, and I believe it to be highly worth the price that Mazda is currently asking for it.

By JSC Editor

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