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The Mazda3 often gets overshadowed by more popular compact cars, including the Toyota Corolla. However, like other vehicles in the Mazda lineup, the Mazda3 has good driving dynamics. With this in mind, the 2023 Mazda3 has one giant benefit over the 2023 Toyota Corolla: It’s more fun to drive. 

2023 Mazda3 is more fun to drive than the 2023 Toyota Corolla

Gray 2023 Mazda3 compact car driving along a rough road
2023 Mazda3 | Mazda

When analyzing the differences between cars, things like price, reliability, warranty coverage, features, and safety are considerations. While all of these factors are important things to evaluate, it’s good to get to the heart of why we love cars: the driving experience. And on this front, the 2023 Mazda3 delivers. It’s more fun to drive than the 2023 Toyota Corolla.

With its precise steering and maneuverability, the Mazda3 has nimble handling for navigating curves, corners, and traffic. It also provides a good feel for the road with its taut body control and firm ride. However, it’s not too firm to make the ride uncomfortable when going over rough roads, per Car and Driver. The ride quality is also aided by the smooth-riding suspension and seats that are ergonomically designed for maximum comfort.

2023 Mazda3 has more potent engines than the 2023 Corolla

Rear angle view of red 2023 Toyota Corolla compact car
2023 Toyota Corolla | Toyota

Another reason why the 2023 Mazda3 is more fun to drive is its engine options. This is especially the case with its available turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. It churns out 250 horsepower and 320 lb-ft of torque. There’s also the base-level 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, which generates 191 horsepower and 186 lb-ft of torque. 

The engines offered for the standard 2023 Toyota Corolla model are not as potent. This includes a 2.0-liter cylinder engine (169 horsepower; 151 lb-ft of torque) and a hybrid powertrain (138 horsepower; 105 lb-ft of torque). The Corolla has a separate “hot hatch” model with the GR Corolla, which is more powerful. However, the standard Corolla doesn’t match the level of engine performance of the Mazda3.

Furthermore, with its more powerful engines, the Mazda3 provides quick acceleration. It completes the 0-60 mph sprint in as low as 5.6 seconds, compared to 7.8 seconds for the Corolla.

Other strengths of the Mazda3 over the Toyota Corolla

In addition to being more fun to drive, the 2023 Mazda3 has some other strengths over the 2023 Corolla. This includes a roomier interior. While both compact cars seat up to five people, the Mazda3 provides more total passenger space — 92.8 cu-ft for the Sedan and 92.7 cu-ft for the Hatchback. In comparison, there’s only 88.6 cu-ft of passenger space in the Corolla Sedan and 84.6 cu-ft for the Hatchback. 

Also, the cabin of the Mazda3 is more upscale than the Corolla. It provides a level of refinement and premium quality that rivals some luxury cars. It’s not what you’d expect to see in a budget-friendly sedan or hatchback. Additionally, the Mazda3 offers interior features that you can’t get for the Corolla, such as a dual-zone climate control system, a seat memory function, and a head-up display. 

The 2023 Mazda3 is fun to drive, with its agility, good handling, quick acceleration, and comfortable ride. The fun to drive nature is a giant benefit that the Mazda3 has over the 2023 Toyota Corolla. It’s something to keep in mind when deciding between the two compact cars.


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