Ive had my Mazda2 for a few weeks now and just gonna give a quick review of my likes and dislikes. Ive got about 2000 mile son it now and really like it. Its certainly cheap enough and is a very nice solid feeling econobox. The fact that it comes with a spare tire (actually pretty rare these days), a timing chain (very rare in this group), and electric steering really sold me on it. I dont forsee many issues done the road with it.
Not really that small. Seats 4 if needed and is only a touch shorter than my subaru forester. Its is a bit narrower though.
Lots of features standard. I got the base model sport with an automatic and it really isnt lacking in anything. Came with power everything, floormats, spare tire, ipod integration, 4 doors and pretty much anything you could need. The only upgrade i would have liked was the more sophisticated trip computer with mpg tracking and other useful info. Getting that would have added a few thousand more since it would jump me into the next trim level.
Fun driving experience. It really is a peppy little car. Handles well and has a fair amount of power behind it despite the fact that on paper it looks like a slug.
Wonderful interior. Everything is well placed and functional. I have a few gripes for the con's column but for the most part its nice.
Con's- Most of these are strictly for me but it may effect other purchasing decision.
Non illuminated gear selecter. You would think that in this day and age all automatics would have a selector light on the shifter itself that shows what gear your in. Even a little bar above the D spot would be nice. The only way to tell waht gear your in in this car is a monochromatic tiny gear indicator underneith the gas meter. On bright or darkish days you can see it unless you turn on your lights. and even then its tough. We've both been caught in the wrong gear a few times and my wife is struggling to cope with it since she's a just hop in and drive type of person.
Piss poor gas meter. No fuel gauge on this car, its a bar system. 8 bars till your empty from full. Not really a precise instrument either. Filling up on the last bar takes only 7 gallons for a 12 gallon tank. I think it would be a lot better is it had alot more bars to more acurating see what you at. Ive filled up once at the half way point when we bought it and it took 2 gallons so you may spend more time filling up before its time. Im sure ill get used to it but its annoying.
Still kind of a big car. While its billed as a subcompact it really not that small. Interior is roomy if a bit narrow and it has a lot passenger space. If i could have gotten a 2 door I would have but its not available.
Poor fuel economy so far. Im hoping this will straighten out over time. Its a new car, its winter, and im splitting driving with my crazy wife. Best mpg to date is 30.5 highway. Its rated for 33mpg highway so im a touch off. Ive heard of people getting high 30's once broken in so im hopeful.
Expensive-ish maintence. Oil changes are gonna be a killer in this little car. Takes synthetic 0w-20. Cost at dealer is $60 of the cheapest comperable oil at wally world is gonna set me back about $35. Cost of an oil change on my mpg monster saturn is under 15 bucks.
I've tried 0w-20 once in the Prius, and it seemed to improve winter economy. As you noted, it's costlier than other options. So I didn't continue with it.
Is there a specific reason for that oil beyond an edge for EPA testing? Since it's available in the 5qt jug, a 5w-20 synthetic will save a little cash over buying individual quarts. The difference in cold viscosity should only hurt your winter economy during start up.
Its recommended change is 5k miles. I think its just to help the epa testing, i dont think its "needed". I was thinking 5w-20 as well.
I know in my bmw it calls for 0w-30 and its pretty much needed. The oil passages are so small in it id be afraid to have anything thicker in it.
Just a quick update on my little 2. Ive now got about 10k on it and all is well. My wife is the one that mostly drives and shes been getting a steady 34mpg. On the few times ive gotten hold of it i can eek out 36mpg with her driving some as well. I think 38mpg is possible on the winter gas. Im hoping in the dead of summer she can get that on her own.
Ive been looking at mods to get a bit more out of it but i dont think there is too much to do. Not much to take off or add. The car already comes with a grill block and is pretty light at 2200 lbs. Id like to lower it abit and maybe stiffen it up since its pretty floaty. I doubt itll help mpg but it might.