2008 Mazdaspeed3, Part Three

Why you should buy the 2008 Mazdaspeed3:
You want a fast car, but have to pick up your children from school. You want a WRX STI, but can't quite afford the running costs and you don't need the AWD anyways. You got a bunch of tickets a few years ago; you still like driving fast, but want to preserve what little credibility is left of your driving record. You've seen the light, and understand that hot hatches are the most practical, best value all-round vehicles for an enthusiast, but you think the WRX is too soft, the GTI needs more power, the Caliber SRT-4 is too loud, and the other 3-doors are too small.

Why you shouldn't buy this car:
You need a dope ride to pick up some shorties. You think "Tokyo Drift" was the most awesome racing movie ever. You don't consider chrome racing rims to be oxymoronic. You want a roof scoop on your car, but have no idea what they're for. When someone says, "driving dynamics," you think they're talking about a tuning company. You like hatchbacks because they have more room in the back for a system.

Suitability Parameters:
Speed Merchants: Yes
Fashion Victims: No
Treehuggers: No
Mack Daddies: No
Tuner Crowd: Yes
Hairdressers: No
Penny Pinchers: No
Euro Snobs: No
Working Stiffs: No
Technogeeks: No
Poseurs: No
Soccer Moms: No
Nascar Dads: No
Golfing Grandparents: No

Also Consider:
• Audi A3 2.0T
• Dodge Caliber SRT4
• Mini Cooper S Clubman
• Subaru Impreza WRX 5-door
• VW GTI 5-door
• BMW 135i and massive debt
• Moving to France, buying the greatest of all hot hatches, the Peugeot 205 Gti 1.9 and taking up smoking

Vitals:
• Manufacturer: Mazda
• Model year: 2008
• Base Price: $23,090
• Price as Tested: $24,805
• Engine type: 2.3-Liter Turbocharged DOHC I4
• Horsepower: 263 @ 5,500 RPM
• Torque: 280 @ 3,000 RPM
• Transmission: 6-Speed Manual
• Curb Weight: 3,180 lbs
• LxWxH: 177.8" x 69.5" x 57.7"
• Wheelbase: 103.9"
• Tires: P215/45R18
• 0 - 60 mph: 5.8 Seconds
• EPA Fuel economy city/highway: 18/26 MPG
• NHTSA crash test rating: NA

Also see:
2008 Mazdaspeed3, Part One
2008 Mazdaspeed3, Part Two