The 2011 Mazda2 is filled with pleasant surprises. Some people might have low expectations given that this is perceived to be “below” the highly successful Mazda3. However the Mazda2 definitely has it’s own unique features and advantages making it an excellent choice for people looking for mid-range cars. I was initially hesitant about this car but after driving it for almost a week I walked away as a convert.
A smiling and happy car
When I stepped out of Mazda Greenhills to check out the test car I was prepared to be “underwhelmed”. The Mazda2 though has an intangible quality that will just charm you the moment you put your eyes on it. As the car was parked in front of me, I was just disarmed and found myself thinking that this is one insanely cute and nice car. The curves of the car body were smooth, seamless, and just flowed into one gorgeous design. The front fender stuck out a bit like how they did it with the Mazda3 but this one was more refined and pulled back making it blend in the design. The front grille also made it look like the car was “smiling”, haha!
They also retained the trapezoid-shaped rear window of the Mazda3 which actually went nice with the hatchback model that we were going to use. The taillights are beautifully slanted on each side giving it a modern and sporty look.
Interior that’s just right
The interior of the Mazda2 features a three-layered dashboard with the CD player, stereo, and AC controls. It has a high-mounted gearshift which I initially found odd but ended up appreciating it compared to the usual gearshift placement. I’m a bit tall (5″11) and definitely a big guy so I had a bit of a problem with the leg room for the driver’s seat. However once I settled in it was pretty much a great experience. It didn’t feel like I was in a second-rate Mazda3 or low end car. It didn’t feel cheap but it also wasn’t luxury defined. It was just right. 🙂
The driving experience: Silent, Smooth, and Nimble
We took the car for a long drive to Calamba, Laguna over the weekend so we were able to test it for both city and out-of-town driving. Plowing through Makati and Edsa traffic was much easier given the car’s size (it’s narrow) and the spacious side-view mirrors also helped a lot. In terms of long drives there’s one thing that you’ll definitely notice and appreciate — the Mazda2 is a smooth and silent ride. You won’t hear rumbling engine noises like what you get a lot out of the Honda City or Civic. The suspension is also superb. I usually drive a Honda City and I would have problems with those annoying white rough patches on the road that DPWH and MMDA just loves to install (especially the stretch on White Plains). The Mazda2 though just cruises by without any problem.
It also can accelerate quite fast despite having less horsepower because Mazda was able to bring down the weight of the car (it’s around 200 lbs. lighter compared to other models in the same class). It’s a nimble, responsive, and fast car.
When Mazda said that this model was refined, they weren’t kidding. If you’re seriously considering the car based on our review, please do schedule a test drive so you can test out everything that we said in this article. The Mazda2 base model (1.3L, 5-Speed manual) sells for Php689,000. 🙂