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The Mazda3 has always felt more premium than many of its competitors. The 2023 model is no different. It is available as a sedan or hatchback and offers a mix of style and performance found in many compact luxury cars. The standard four-cylinder offers a good combination of economy and performance, while the optional turbocharged engine provides power comparable to the Subaru WRX and Volkswagen GTI. Unlike some cars, you can still order it with a precise six-speed manual transmission. 

Mazda may lack the name recognition of the Honda Civic or Toyota Corolla, but it’s geared toward buyers seeking a rewarding driving experience that’s more Miata-like than the Mazda3’s competitors. Opt for the fully loaded 2023 Mazda3 Turbo Premium Plus, and you’ll get a compact performance car that rivals more upscale cars in both features and performance.   

2023 Mazda3 Turbo Premium Plus features and specs

A light grey 2023 Mazda3 driving
2023 Mazda3 | Mazda

According to Kelly Blue Book, the base Mazda3 starts at $22,550 plus destination. The top-of-the-line Turbo Premium Plus goes for $35,065. That’s quite a difference in price, but the Turbo Premium Plus partially justifies the extra money with more refined styling, including aerodynamic accents for both the sedan and hatchback. The sedan receives a subtle rear lip spoiler, while hatchback models get a front air dam and rear roof spoiler. 

Additional safety features are also standard, including Mazda’s Rear Direction Base Safety, which includes Smart Brake Support-Reverse and Rear Cross-Traffic Braking. Traffic Jam Assist and 360° View Monitor with front and rear parking sensors are also included. Rounding out the impressive technology are Mazda’s Homelink, which is built into the frameless auto-dim rearview mirror, and Mazda Navigation System with an Active Driving Display to include Traffic Sign Recognition.

Leather seats are available in black or red for the hatchback and black or white for the sedan. The materials are first-rate, complimenting a well-laid-out interior that wouldn’t seem out of place on an Audi or BMW. Mazda has also cribbed from those companies for the design of the front seats. They provide firm support to help drivers remain alert and comfortable for hours of driving.  

2023 Mazda3 Turbo Premium Plus performance 

Performance is where the Mazda3 Turbo Premium Plus really shines. According to Car & Driver, the Mazda car has the following specs: 


  • Wheelbase: 107.3 in
  • Length: 183.5 in
  • Width: 70.7 in
  • Height: 56.9 in

Engine/Drivetrain Specs: 

  • 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-4
  • Horsepower: 250 hp
  • Torque: 320 lb-ft
  • Transmission: 6-speed automatic or 6-speed manual

Performance Specs: 

  • 60 mph: 5.6 sec
  • 1/4-Mile: 14.1 sec
  • Top Speed: 134 mph
  • Fuel Economy: 23/32 mpg

Is a fully loaded Mazda3 Turbo Premium Plus worth buying? 

At first blush, $35,000 seems like a lot to pay for a compact sedan or hatchback, especially one that starts at just over $22,000. But compare the base Mazda3 with the Turbo Premium Plus, which are almost different cars. 

Both versions of the Mazda3 offer excellent driving dynamics, nice styling, and a well-laid-out interior. The base Mazda3 is competitive against cars like the $22,000 Honda Civic, $21,000 Toyota Corolla, and $20,000 Hyundai Elantra or Kia Forte. But the $35,000 Turbo Premium Plus holds its own against cars like the Audi A3  and BMW 2 Series. 

The biggest drawback of the Mazda3 is the badge. Many buyers who can afford a $35,000 compact car want a premium experience, including something with a blue and white roundel or three-pointed star. That said, the Mazda3 tops under $40,000, while the premium brands require you to pay over that price for the same level of features and performance. But if you want a fun-to-drive small car with the performance and features of a premium small sports sedan, the Mazda3 is greater than the sum of its parts. 


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