Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt Our Fleet Test Drive: Mazda 3 - 7th report
Cookies on Businesscar

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the Business Car website. However, if you would like to, you can change your cookies at any time

BusinessCar magazine website email Awards mobile

The start point for the best source of fleet information

Our Fleet Test Drive: Mazda 3 - 7th report

Date: 23 September 2014   |   Author: Hugh Hunston

For many drivers, interiors are as much workplaces as offices, and so ideally ought to provide a suitable environment.

Our Mazda 3 offers an essentially tranquil interior that, unfortunately, is compromised by exterior road noise from the Toyo tyres being particularly sensitive to changing road surfaces, sometimes intrusively. In mitigation, however, this is arguably accentuated by a low-decibel driving environment.

Both ergonomically and operationally the interior is pretty sound. The chunky leather-bound steering wheel, well-weighted gear lever and offset conventional handbrake are reassuringly solid to manipulate.

Instruments and controls combine form and function fairly intuitively, even if the seven-inch infotainment screen, accessed by a central rotary bevelled control, does not slide out of sight, and cannot be blacked out, unlike the Honda Civic's. There's also a neat, well-positioned instrument cluster, with speed defined by a novel glowing halo surrounding the needle.

If the halo effect is not enough, the info screen registers prevailing limits, providing a surrounding yellow card when thresholds are ignored.

Finally, the otherwise well thought-out interior lacks sufficient cubby holes, with only narrow, bottle-sized orifices built into the front and rear door panels.