2018 Mazda3 vs 2019 Mazda3

I got a 2018 Mazda3 loaner from my local dealer. It has approximately 5000 miles and it seems to be quite loaded with heated leather seats and better looking panels.

I have 1 immediate impression - the seat is more comfortable than on the new 2019 Mazda3 Preferred.
It feels softer and the lumbar support section is flatter and the overall feel is much better. I like it.
Other than that - the side view mirrors are a little bigger - or just the field of view is better.
Also - the AC vents are different and I think the AC blows a little stronger on it, although I am unsure how to quantify it really.
Not a big deal I think. But it does have Parking brake OFF by default, which is good.

I am trying hard to find anything else that's better on it - but quite honestly everything else is way worse than the 2019 model.
Odometers are so bad - I simply can't get used to them after using the 2019 model. No HOLD function, which is bad.
The Bluetooth quality is shockingly worse than on the new 2019 Mazda3. Radio sound is mediocre. These cars are clearly not in the same class of audio.
Power, handling and speed are somewhat comparable - not the same, but I got it for just 2 days now, so can't really say much about that yet.

2019 Mazda3 has a perfect stereo and a perfect Bluetooth quality, better than other luxury brands. Better than BMW, Benz or Lexus. I know, I tried.
Also - 2019 model is really quiet. That's interesting. People who spend time on the phone - like brokers, real estate agents, should appreciate it a lot.
(What I am saying here - is basically 2019 Mazda3 Bluetooth sound beats all 3 luxury brands I listed above; its that much better.)

If you have a choice - DO NOT buy the 2018. Get a 2019 preferred or premium.
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2016 Mazda, CX-5 GT
We just bought a 2019 HB Mazda 3. I agree the interior and quietness of the car are on par with BMW and other luxury near brands. We've owned three BMW's (still have one). Power is only decent. Comparing it to the Honda Civic we drove the Mazda felt light years ahead. Granted the Civic EX had the base 2.0L. We already have a 2016 Mazda CX5 GT and that car has been bulletproof through the first 113K miles we've owned it.

Personally, when it comes to ride, safety features, quality and cost to insure the Mazda 3 is going to be pretty tough to beat.
Yes. This is correct. I am glad that I am not the only one to notice.
Even though this 2019 Mazda3 is in entirely different class of cars - but it is BETTER than these luxury overpriced cars.

There are some minor issues, and yes - it is an unfair comparison with a Lexus car that costs double.
But the benefits of owning a Lexus aren't major. Yes, there are more features, more power, vented seats, folding steering wheel column, moving seats upon entry - and nicer closing windows, but these features aren't critical - while the basics not only compare - but Mazda3 is BETTER. More quiet at times, firmer suspension and I believe the sound is better.

For example - the sound from the Bluetooth is better.
Stereo is better than a standard Lexus car - while it is (In my opinion) comparable with Levinson version.

As for the power - yes, the luxury segment offers 300hp range - but do we really need that?
187hp from my Mazda is sufficient. I would maybe want to have 220hp, but I don't need that really, as the car is light and it wants to fly with this 187hp already.

I have several 90 degrees turns on my way back from work and I like taking these at maximum speed possible.
Sometimes the rear of my car starts sliding - because of the poor rear suspension, but I don't remember having that fun when I drove a BMW525 or the smaller versions 325.

Mazda3 is really fun to drive. I wish it was a little better, but for the price I do not complain.
one more thing. I am noticing more differences in handling. For instance the power of the 2018 feels different. It has very little power from 0 to 20 MPH.
Then it gets quite vigorous from about 40 until maybe 70 MPH. But the response to gas pedal is slower. I kind of feel like it wants to choke at times. This is not good.
2019 Mazda3 feels more smooth and has more power from zero to 20, then slightly less between 20 and 60 - but then after 60 it is way more powerful.
Somehow the control is different - faster, when I step on it.

It could very well be an individual thing on these two -- maybe the air filter is plugged on the 2018 or maybe there is something else going on, but the impression is there.

As for the suspension - the 2018 model feels firmer on uneven surface on a freeway at higher speeds.
The 2018 Mazda3 has similar handling like the new Mazda6, while 2019 Mazda3 isn't that stable.
For some reason - the 2019 suspension isn't that great. They did something wrong. It is not the same.
You don't feel it - if you drive on a flat and even surface. But our freeways aren't that. Not even close.
We have concrete surface with uneven sections making the car want to go left and right.
It is scary to have a drink on your lap or in the holder at 80 MPH.
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