The new Mazda3 Skyactiv SP20 takes all of the good features of the Maxx Sport and improves on them.
The 2.0L direct injection engine is powerful for a car of its size and returns decent figures. (7.2L with 50:50 hwy and urban driving). The Stop-Start system is very intuitive and is very unobtrusive.
The Interior is well built and has a lot of soft touch features. The revised all black centre console is an improvement on the previous silver version. At night there are blue LED lights hidden around the cabin providing ambient lighting.
One negative is the bluetooth, which allows for media streaming but you can’t scroll through albums or view song names on the screen. The car also lacks a USB port. (It does have an AUX input though).
The sat nav screen is a little small for a built-in system but works quite well and is comparable in size to an after market unit.
Another small negative is the softness of the Mazda paint and its ability to get stone chips in it very easily.
The new 6spd auto is smooth, except in spirited driving it can hold itself in the lower gear for a bit too long. Around town the car is smooth, though the ride can be a little harsh.
The car is packed with features: auto headlights and wipers, cruise control, bluetooth, alloy wheels, stop-start, 6-spd auto, sat nav etc. It is speced similarly to the Maxx Sport, but for an extra $1500 you get the improved engine and gearbox and the fuel benefits which makes the extra cost more than worthwhile.