The mid-size sedan segment is basically ruled by the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord and it has been for years. And while the Mazda6 doesn’t share as much of the spotlight as it’s other Japanese rivals, it still brings a lot to the table via a unique sense of style and refined sportiness.
We’ve already compared the Mazda6 to the Honda Accord and the two compare so even that we would even be hard-pressed to choose between the two if tasked with the decision. It’s not that much easier when you stack the Mazda’s sporty family sedan against the venerable Camry either. But here are five ways in which we think the Mazda is actually better.
The Mazda6 has sportier driving dynamics
While the Toyota Camry does have a TRD trim level, which ups the ante on the sportiness front, the 2020 Mazda6 doesn’t need any modifications to exude its spry athleticism. During our time with the Mazda6, it was apparent that the mid-size family hauler could confidently negotiate just about any corner we threw it into and its steering feels was responsive and sharp.
Mazda has always been known to bring a sportiness to the table and the Mazda6 sedan is no exception. In case you don’t want to take our word for it, even Autotrader echoes our remarks stating that the Mazda6 has “sharper driving dynamics than the Camry.”
More sophisticated styling
While some consumers might actually find the Toyota Camry’s styling beautiful, there’s no arguing that the Mazda6’s styling evokes much more emotion. Mazda has been evolving its KODO design language for quite some time and it works especially well on the family sedan. We’re quite smitten with the Mazda6’s bold wheel arches and curvy design and we also feel that the Mazda6’s interior is second-to-none.
The interior’s elegant styling and Sen Wood trim look like it came from a car at a much higher price point and we were utterly shocked at the lack of cabin noise at almost any speed. Mazda did a great job on the Mazda6’s styling inside and out and we can’t wait to see what they have in store for the next generation.
The 2020 Toyota Camry is available with three different engines including a 203-hp inline-four, a 301-hp V6, and a 208-hp hybrid setup and the Mazda6 is only available with two different choices. Despite the fact that the Mazda6 doesn’t have a fuel-sipping hybrid trim, we do like that the turbocharged 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine produces 250 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. And while it produces less power than the Camry’s V6, it’s the torque rating that makes driving a lot more fun.
During the time that we had the Mazda6, we did take note of the huge surge of power that the turbocharged provides when accelerating at almost any RPM and more importantly, the sound that it makes is downright intoxicating.
A lower price of entry
The 2020 Toyota Camry has a starting price of $24,095 and the 2020 Mazda6 starts at $23,800. Both cars top out in the mid-to-high $30,000 range in their top trim levels, however, we like the fact that anyone just looking for a base trim can save more money by opting for the Mazda6.
A better sound system
The Mazda6 is available with a Bose sound system with 11 speakers if you opt for the higher Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trim levels. While it’s tough to compete with the optional JBL system that you can get in the Camry, we would argue that the added sound deadening and quiet cabin of the Mazda6 aid in bringing the audio highs and the lows to life, making for a more sublime aural experience.
It’s still a tough decision
Just like when comparing the 2020 Mazda6 to the 2020 Honda Accord, it’s a tough decision when we put next to the Camry as well. However, for anyone that prioritizes driving dynamics and a quiet ride to a bulkier and possibly more-comfortable sedan like the Camry, the Mazda6 would be the better choice.