Sedans & Coupes

The 2018 Mazda3 Is the Perfect Fun-to-Drive Used Car

It’s time for a new-to-you car, and you have an idea of what you need. You want decent tech, top-notch value, fuel economy, and it needs to be a little fun to drive. After all, if you can’t enjoy yourself behind the wheel, why spend thousands of dollars? One of the best used cars to consider is the 2018 Mazda3. It’s loaded with great features, tops all the reviewers’ lists as a fun-to-drive ride, and even scores a perfect reliability score with Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports is on the case

Consumer Reports is a great resource for consumers who look for reviews and sentiments of actual vehicle owners. Together with the CR experts, reviews often rate a car’s safety, performance, and value. There are also ratings for overall reliability that take into consideration maintenance and repair costs, as part of a historic vehicle ownership survey.

The 2018 Mazda3 scored perfect five out of five in four major vehicle trouble spots. Meaning, when it comes to the engine, cooling, and transmission, the Mazda3 had little-to-no problems reported at all.

Edmunds reviews love this sporty, fun car

The Edmunds gurus, and many others, often begin their extensive reviews by sharing just how fun the 2018 Mazda3 is to drive. Available as a four-door sedan or the five-door hatchback, this little Mazda handles turns like a pro.

The transmission shifting is smooth, the handling is sharp, and pick-up is peppy. Choose from a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with 155 hp or a 2.5-liter four-cylinder version, with 184 hp. Morning commutes and daily drives now present an opportunity for fun, and according to some, pure joy.

The connectivity and infotainment for a 2018 model is great

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You might assume that buying an older model used car means having to compromise some of the latest technology enhancements. The 2018 Mazda3 may pleasantly surprise you. Optional tech upgrades, both in infotainment and driver assistance features, rivaled some of what the luxury models were offering at the time.

Standard on both the Grand Touring and Touring trims are features like blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic alert. Stick with those higher-level trims, and you’ll have Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity as well. Some reviews call the infotainment system the best this class had to offer at the time.

Common complaints about the 2018 Mazda3

Not every car is perfect, and the Mazda3 does note a few pitfalls for some consumers. It’s quick and peppy, but certainly, it’s not the fastest car. And even the hatchback falls short in the cargo capacity when compared to others. Some also point out a cramped feeling for adults in the back seat and too much road noise. Despite its robust menu of infotainment and connection capabilities, there are some consumers who take issue with the frustrating console-mounted knob as the control mechanism.

But when it comes to mechanical or performance complaints, the 2018 Mazda3 doesn’t rack up much in the way of costly troubles. Again, according to Consumer Reports, this little car earned a perfect score in overall reliability. When researching the reports collected by CarComplaints.com, there were only a handful of isolated concerns.

If you’re set to begin your search for the best used car, the 2018 Mazda3 is definitely worth a look. Of course, be diligent about doing your ownership history homework about the vehicle you choose. But know that overall, this little zippy car has plenty to offer and perfect reliability scores with other owners. Buying used is often the smartest move. With a 2018 Mazda3, you won’t be cutting corners on fun, either.