2011 Mazda6

The midsize sedan market is one of the most competitive segments on the market. Guaranteed to seat at least 4 people, this market encompasses some of the most demanding clientele around. Depending on your orientation, they might look for style, comfort, performance, luxury, reliability, practicality, value for money, or a combination of some or all of these values. With such a deep market, success here almost equates to a ton of sales. This is why just about every brand has a competitor for this segment. And for Mazda, a car known for its ethos of making quick and sporty cars, their bet for this segment is the 2011 Mazda 6.

Specifications

General Info
Vehicle Type: Sedan Base Price: $20,240.00
Fuel Tank Capacity: 18.5 gallons (70 liters) MPG: 21 city / 30 hwy
Dimensions
Length: 193.7 in. (492 cm) Width: 72.4 in. (183.9 cm)
Height: 57.9 in. (147 cm) Wheel Base: 109.8 in. (278 cm)
Curb Weight: 3272 lbs (1484 kg) Ground Clearance: 5.1 in. (13 cm)
Luggage Capacity: 16.6 cu ft Maximum Seating: 5 people
Performance
Engine: 2.5L DOHC 16-Valve 4-cylinder w/ VVT Displacement: 2489 cc
Horsepower: 170 HP Max RPM: 6000 RPM
Torque: 167 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm Transmission: 6-Speed Manual w/ OD
Available Trims & Engine
Option:Mazda6 iTouring MSRP: $22,885; MPG: 21 city / 30 hwy
Option:Mazda6 iTouring Plus MSRP: $24,490; MPG: 21 city / 30 hwy
Option:Mazda6 iGrand Touring MSRP: $27,070; MPG: 21 city / 30 hwy
Option:Mazda6 sTouring Plus MSRP: $27,330; MPG: 21 city / 30 hwy
Option:Mazda6 sTouring MSRP: $29,570; MPG: 21 city / 30 hwy

Performance

It’s no secret that the Mazda 6 is designed to be sporty. But does its performance stack up to the image? There are 2 engine options: a 2.5 liter 4-cylinder engine with a rated output of 170 horsepower and a 3.7 liter V6 engine rated at 272 horsepower. A 6 speed manual gearbox is offered for the 4 cylinder variant while a 6 speed automatic is the only option for the 6 cylinder one.

But this one is gaining the most rave reviews for its handling. The suspension used in this car is very well sorted out. Its drivers will surely appreciate its impressive handling. But despite that, you don’t have to worry about bumps. It can handle them with grace, providing a smooth ride for all. With just the right firmness, the suspension settings make this car a winner.

Exterior & Interior

Perhaps due to their “zoom-zoom” principle, the Mazda 6 is shaped to be as sporty as possible. And the result is one of the more aggressive looking midsize sedans out there. Sporty lines such as fender flares, a swooping rooflines, and dual exhausts set the tone for this car. In addition, its looks are unmistakably Mazda. In the interior, it features some updates for 2011. The quality of materials used is a step up from previous models.

Also, the seats are top notch. Both the front and rear are spacious and can accommodate just about any type of person. Plus the trunk is pretty large for its class, with 16.6 cubic feet of room to spare. The ergonomics are commendable; the gauges are legible and the different functions can be used without much hassle. Safety ratings can be described as good enough for this car. It had great ratings for front and side impacts, but the integrity of the roof scored only “acceptable” while marginal ratings are given for rear collisions.

The Competition

The Toyota Camry SE (MSRP $22,965; 22 city / 33 hwy) and the Honda Accord EX (MSRP $24,305; 33 city / 33 hwy) are two other vehicles that are in direct competition with the Mazda6.

Pros & Cons

Now, with all the statistics out of the way, we would try to discuss the reasons for you to buy or not buy the Mazda6. The biggest reason why you should buy this car is because of its performance. It was advertised that way, and it delivers.

While some deem that the 4 cylinder engine seemed too weak for a car of its caliber, the 6 cylinder equipped ones are spectacular. Its abundant power is perfect with its well balanced chassis. In addition, its looks are well received. It imparts a defined character, something that some cars don’t have.

Furthermore, this car is practical for everyday use. It can haul at least 4 people comfortably, and take on their entire luggage for good measure. There are reasons why you shouldn’t buy this car, but they are relatively minor. One, the central part of the rear seat is seemingly best suited for smaller people, and two, its 4 cylinder engine is deemed to be an underwhelming performer.

The Mazda6 is definitely a contender in the midsize sedan market, with over 1 million units sold since 2002. The 2011 Mazda6 is sure to carry on this tradition, and bring on smiles to all its owners with its driver-centered dynamics and well-thought construction.

Overall Rating
77 out of 100

What others say:

“The 2011 Mazda Mazda6 is a great pick for practically-minded family-car shoppers who also value driving enjoyment.”Car Connection

“The 6 is agile and corners with confidence. Body lean in corners is minimal. Steering is responsive, with good on-center feel.”Consumer Guide

“The redesigned Mazda6 is larger and more refined than its predecessor.”MSN Auto-ConsumerReports

“The well-rounded 2011 Mazda 6 ranks highly among family sedans for its sporty driving dynamics and spacious interior.”Edmunds

“While not the sport-oriented platform enjoyed by its predecessor, the newest Mazda6 retains fun-to-drive elements, while offering far more interior volume for passengers and cargo.”KBB