2008 Mazda Mazdaspeed3

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$4,821 - $5,191 $22,340 - $24,055

2008 Mazda Mazdaspeed3 Review

Note: This review was created when the 2008 Mazda Mazdaspeed3 was new.

The 2008 Mazdaspeed3 brings competitive driving performance with a sharp exterior design and practical affordability. Overall, it ranks at the top of its class.

8.7

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 9.1
Performance: 9.0
Interior: 8.6
Safety: N/A
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Pros & Cons

  • Turbocharged engine delivers potent acceleration
  • Grippy handling and cornering
  • Competitive pricing for a compact sports car
  • Enough cargo capacity for daily hauling
  • Some torque steer and understeer
  • Base stereo is confusing and lacks high-quality sound

2008 Mazda Mazdaspeed3 Overview

The 2008 Mazdaspeed3 is a highly rated sport compact that reviews say has enough zoom and zip to satisfy any enthusiast. Built on the hatchback platform of the Mazda3, it is the sportiest of the Mazda3 lineup and boasts a stiffer ride and more powerful acceleration without sacrificing practicality and affordability. "The Mazdaspeed3 is one of those rare have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too packages capable of entertaining its driver, hauling family or friends, and minding a budget," reports Automobile Magazine.

The 2008 Mazdaspeed3 comes in two trim levels: Sport and Grand Touring.

  • "[T]he new Mazda will dust the VW GTI and Honda Civic Si -- two of the Speed3's major competitors-in a drag race." -- AutoWeek
  • "This powerful little hatchback is less of a daily commuter and more of a screaming, raw performance car." -- Detroit News
  • "There's no doubt that Porsche builds the world's best performance cars that can also serve as daily commuters, like the 911 twin turbo with all-wheel drive. But on the lower end, Mazda leads the pack -- at the racetrack and in suburbia." -- Boston Globe
  • "It's got the handling, the body style, and a peppy engine. But it won't deliver the thumping bass that is also part of the hot hatchback culture, and the stereo won't easily be upgraded to satisfy music lovers." -- CNET
  • "Today, our vehicles must not only be fun to drive, but practical at the same time. While practical doesn't get the headlines, being able to be practical and infuse a high element of fun into the drive does. We think the MAZDASPEED3 achieves its goal." -- AutoMedia.com
  • "The Mazdaspeed version just amplifies everything that I like about the standard edition -- more power, hotter looks, better handling, but still totally drivable on a daily basis. And the price is still very reasonable." -- About.com
  • "Not only is the list price almost $25,000 -- which makes 'economy car' seem pretty irrelevant here -- some dealers are getting list price and above, because Mazda hasn't been able to keep up with demand." -- Orlando Sentinel
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