2019 Mazda3 Has Beauty, Brains, And Hopefully Personality Too

From the moment we saw the first teaser image of the all-new Mazda3 we know we’d be in for something special.

After all, a car inspired by the Mazda Kai Concept would have been impossible to get wrong from a styling point of view. We’re glad to say Mazda has nailed it with the all-new 3, even though both the sedan and the hatchback are clear design evolutions of their predecessors. Who needs a revolution when a gradual development leads to a result like this?

If we were to pick the best-looking body style of the two available, we’d probably go for the hatchback because it’s the closest to the essence of the Kai study. However, the sedan doesn’t look half bad, it’s a huge improvement over its predecessor. The “smaller Mazda6” suit didn’t fit the outgoing Mazda3 sedan that well but in the case of its successor it clearly does.

Add to that the minimalist interior with a smooth looking dashboard and it gets clear competitors will have to up their game if they want to beat this new Mazda3 in terms of appeal.

By now, chances are you already know everything about the 2019 Mazda3, including the fact that it will offer available all-wheel-drive — in the U.S. as well. Mazda hasn’t released specs yet but confirmed 1.5-, 2.0-, and 2.5-liter gasoline engines, as well as a 1.8-liter diesel. The big news is obviously the SkyActiv-X engine paired with a new M Hybrid system.

The SkyActiv-X unit features a Spark-Controlled Compression Ignition (SCCI) system which promises to combine the efficiency of diesel engines with the performance of gasoline units.

The all-new SkyActiv-Vehicle Architecture debuts in the all-new Mazda3, and it brings with it a new suspension combining MacPherson struts in the front and a new torsion beam in the rear. All of these changes combined allow the 2019 Mazda3 to accelerate, turn and brake in a way that “feels natural and intuitive, like a tool you have been using for many years.”

All things considered, which Mazda3 would you have: the elegant sedan or the bold hatchback?

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  • Dennis James

    Sorry, but the hatchback is awful. That minuscule rear window makes the car look like a dog pooping.

    • MarkoS

      It really isn’t a side rear window other that the rear door assembly window that requires a split so it can be fully rolled down.

  • disqus_dXtRWRxM22

    overall, the mazda 3 looks pretty good but the concept had more sharp shapes such as headlights and more space for big wheels making the rear of the car not so bulky. As for the shape of the headlamps, I more prefer the Mazda cx-5 style

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f1eee5316aa448638fbc6fd0a80d5fd229f17745a77c3d9b71567c25099c9074.png

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/53096df87a3b98e1acbae7545e404bd7a5dfad8cc39d5f0cedfa948c694078d7.png

    • Jason Miller

      The concept front overhang is shorter too which would have been better.

    • Mike anonymous

      Trust me, the head lamps on the 3 are MUCH nicer in person. (a cool fun face, the organ reflector is actually not attached to the light, it’s a separate floating piece). The grille also (in person) goes beyond the transparent headlight cover and makes it looks as if the headlights are freestanding (without a cover) just like in the Kai concept.

      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/9566cfcbce08985de31dc2d4b21935d304e376dec5b959a1ac4d95e09768e4d3.png

      The difference in videos and photos is hard to see, but when you do see it in person the difference is most certainly clear. It even has the paint from the concept where it’s organs/red in some light, and ruby/lipstick-red in other light.

      This is the once acceptation for a vehicle in this class where I can truly say the photographs don’t do this vehicle justice, and the beauty is in the details.

  • Jason Miller

    It’s easy for me, I would take the sedan. Can’t get over that weird c-pillar on the hatch.

    • James Denz

      C-pillar is fine. It’s the weird window on the back door that’s bad.

  • sidewaysspin

    It’s pretty easy, the hatchback looks miles better, the sedan is ok for over 60’s.

  • performante

    The c-pillar on the hatch is awful.

    • James Denz

      C-pillar is fine. It’s the window design within the door that’s bad.

  • ctk4949

    Both looks good, im glad a car company is able to bring most of the concept design over to production. Uhhh Subaru, learn from this!!

  • MarkoS

    First, I can’t wait to see the hatch with something besides those awful and tired black wheels. Mazda lost me at no performance variant. This car begs for 200hp plus. Maybe we don’t need a old style MazdaSpeed, but with this leap Mazda should have included a more mature, refined and maybe renamed performance variant, not to take on Honda, but VW. The next Golf is right around the corner and is still the best in the segment, they will not be abandoning the GTI and R. That investment would payoff in credibility. I would also say, make the next CX3 ( 3CX ) a high-wagon variant of the sedan to take on the Golf Alltrack.

  • disqus_dXtRWRxM22
    • Six_Tymes

      its looks much better! HOWEVER, much structural rigidity would be lost.

      • James Denz

        Why? Only the window is enlarged and reshaped. The C-pillar remains the same and as structural.

    • Mike anonymous

      I personally like the style of the Kai concept (which is the Mazda 3). I think it looks better, but I guess we all have our own tastes.

      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/25293d17050c9d03ddd46ae320e4cc65070398950c74944d4eb538654aeef8cf.png

      The only thing I am not clear on is why everyone was saying they loved the Kai concept, and how beautiful it was. But when they took those same dimensions and proportions and then made it something they could produce then people began to dislike it. Why is it only now that all of the issues for concern are coming up. Maybe that’s me, or something I just noticed.

      • Nordschleife

        I agree Mike. Those same looks and C-pillar was so beloved on the concept but now it looks awkward. That’s why I tell carmakers to do what they want because people are never satisfied.

    • MrP

      I think it’s a combination of a couple of things .. Firstly, Soul Red [Crystal] is very much a colour that reacts with the light, so it could be that OR it could be that there’s no waist line that carries through from under the windowline to the top of the tail lights like the sedan has, it’s just one smooth [but flared] guard top to bottom..

      The more I look at the Grey colour in the above photo of the original style the more I like it. I do like the photoshop treatment as well though.

  • LJ

    My wife and I will be picking up the new 3 sedan this Summer.

  • Sean Sweeney
    • Six_Tymes

      its sooooo sexy… but no doubt would cost crazy amount of production $ to do it as seen. I don’t think Mazda can afford to gamble on that right now, especially since the SUV craze is not letting up. I give Mazda kudos for keeping the Miata going.

    • Mike anonymous

      They have plans to make one. They’ve already got the patents for a production variant. But I would agree with Six_Tymes, it’s less of an “if” and more of a “when”. Will they make it, yes they will, but when will the be able to I am not sure.
      Right now, I think Mazda will focus on (following this Mazda 3) redesigning and upgrading their entire line (making cuts and additions) where needed, moving up-market, and establishing themselves there. Towards the end, I believe they will make this. But right now I think they may have their focus elsewhere, but hey, maybe they’ll get to it sooner than we think.

  • Six_Tymes
  • Anthony Paonita

    I prefer the hatch, not only for looks, but utility. It reminds me of my current car, a red Renault Clio.

  • Bill Nguyen

    Hatchback looks kinda awkward from 3/4 view from the front, doesn’t it?

  • Mike S

    For me, the sedan is the coolest of the two. It’s just so sleeeeek, y’know? Way to go, Mazda!

    • SteersUright

      I agree. This go-around the sedan looks better, at least in photos.

  • Andrew Hughes
  • Six Thousand Times

    Too bad about that torsion beam. Kind of ruins the car for me.

  • Liam Paul
  • SteersUright

    You cannot pretend to be a maker of sporty cars without properly sporty powertrains. I love Mazdas, from the exteriors to their interiors to their driving feel. I still have never bought one and likely never will until they bring back cars like the RX7 and other truly exciting vehicles. Underpowered 4-cylinders are not something I can get excited by as a driving enthusiast.

  • Bonni Gari Leksmana

    Take my money for sedan…

  • Wandering_Spirit

    Mazda is doing great cars, both inside and out. One of the few brands that still makes original cars. And the fact that a Japanese brand manages to do it is twice as laudable. The hatch in a different color does for me.

  • 123786786785675645
  • 123786786785675645

    cosmetic changes at the back – longer rear glass and thinner wheel arch
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d2b6a408aa1126500953eb99bf25b110705157774896f3fa5f09dc07814c455e.jpg

  • Sean Sweeney
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