Here's How The 250 HP Mazda 3 Turbo Stacks Up To BMW, Mercedes And Audi

Illustration for article titled Heres How The 250 HP Mazda 3 Turbo Stacks Up To BMW, Mercedes And Audi
Photo: Mazda

Last week, we compared the new 250-horsepower Mazda 3 Turbo against the current crop of hot hatches posing its toughest competition. But Mazda wants to go premium, so let’s see how the new Mazda 3 Turbo stacks up against cars like the Audi A3, Mercedes-Benz A-Class, and more.

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Here’s what we’re looking for from the the premium and luxury competition Mazda claims it wants the new Mazda 3 Turbo to compete against:

Illustration for article titled Heres How The 250 HP Mazda 3 Turbo Stacks Up To BMW, Mercedes And Audi
Photo: Mazda
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Mazda 3 Turbo

  • Price: The current naturally-aspirated Premium Mazda 3 hatch with all-wheel drive starts at $28,900, so let’s just assume the Turbo will start at $30,000 or higher. Pricing will be announced later this year.
  • Power: Turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder with 250 HP and 320 lb-ft of torque (on 93 octane gas).
  • Equipment: Six-speed automatic-only, all-wheel drive standard, 18-inch wheels.
  • MPG (City/ Average / Highway): This same engine in the Mazda 6 sedan returned 23 / 26 / 31 , so we’ll guess around there.
  • Standard Features: LED lighting, 8.8-inch display, dual-zone climate control, heated leather steering wheel, heads-up display, power moonroof, heated leatherette front seats, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Let’s see how the new Turbo stacks up:

Illustration for article titled Heres How The 250 HP Mazda 3 Turbo Stacks Up To BMW, Mercedes And Audi
Photo: Audi
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Audi A3 S-Line

  • Price: Estimated $36,500. Pricing will be announced later this year.
  • Power: The outgoing car has a 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder with 228 HP and 258 lb-ft of torque, but the new one isn’t expected to gain much.
  • Equipment: All-wheel drive, seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, 18-inch wheels.
  • MPG: 27 / 30 / 36 (outgoing model).
  • Standard Features: LED head- and taillights, 10.1-inch display, dual-zone climate control, sunroof, leather seats, heated front seats, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
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Matching the all-wheel drive and power performance of the upcoming Mazda 3 Turbo gets you an Audi A3 that is likely to be much more expensive. The A3 Sport, with 184 HP and 221 lb-ft, starts at $33,300 instead, which is likely closer in price but woefully under-powered by comparison.

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Photo: BMW
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BMW 228i xDrive

  • Price: $38,495
  • Power: Turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 228 HP and 258 lb-ft of torque.
  • Equipment: All-wheel drive, 8-speed automatic transmission, 17-inch wheels.
  • MPG: 23 / 27 / 33
  • Standard Features: LED lighting, 8.8-inch display, dual-zone climate control, SensaTec seating, Apple CarPlay.
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The BMW is way, way more expensive than most of the competition, and on top of that, it doesn’t come with nearly as many standard “premium” features, like a moonroof, android auto, or a heated wheel or front seating, though they all are available as paid options.

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Photo: Lexus
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Lexus UX 250h AWD

  • Price: $35,525
  • Power: Inline 2.0-liter four-cylinder paired with high-output electric motor and 24 kWh battery for 181 total HP (no torque figures are available for the hybrid powertrain on the Lexus website.)
  • Equipment: All-wheel drive, CVT, 18-inch wheels.
  • MPG: 41 / 40 / 38
  • Standard Features: LED lighting, 7-inch display, dual-zone climate control, synthetic leather seating, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
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This one was always a stretch on this list, but I wanted to see what something close to the old Lexus IS hatchback could do to the Mazda. Even with hybrid tech, the answer is way less power for likely much more money. Oh well.

Illustration for article titled Heres How The 250 HP Mazda 3 Turbo Stacks Up To BMW, Mercedes And Audi
Photo: Mercedes-Benz
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Mercedes-Benz A-Class

  • Price: $33,795, or $35,795 for 4Matic all-wheel drive.
  • Power: Turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 188 HP and 221 lb-ft of torque.
  • Equipment: Front- or all-wheel drive, seven-speed automatic transmission, 17-inch wheels.
  • MPG: 24 / 28 / 35
  • Standard Features: LED lighting, 7-inch display, dual-zone climate control, sport seats, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
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Even if you cut back to just front-wheel drive, the A-Class lacks about 60 HP and 100 lb-ft of torque compared to the Mazda Turbo, which just doesn’t sound fun.

Illustration for article titled Heres How The 250 HP Mazda 3 Turbo Stacks Up To BMW, Mercedes And Audi
Photo: Volvo
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Volvo XC40 T5 AWD

  • Price: $36,345
  • Power: Turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 248 HP and 258 lb-ft of torque.
  • Equipment: All-wheel drive, 8-speed automatic transmission, 18-inch wheels.
  • MPG: 23 / 30 / 34
  • Standard Features: LED lighting, 12.3-inch display, leatherette seating, and Apple CarPlay.
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I’m actually surprised at how close of a performance match the Volvo manages to be, but it can’t justify it’s price when compared to the Mazda Turbo’s ridiculous torque figure.


Again, all of these cars are very close to being priced out of contention with what Mazda is likely going to sell it for—but that’s the entire idea. Offer premium-level features and performance at an price lower than traditional luxury offerings.

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Depending on the final price the Mazda 3 Turbo will leave lots at, it handedly beats anything the Mercedes-Benz A-Class, Lexus UX, or BMW 228i xDrive can throw at it. Only Volvo and Audi are close to offering as good a deal as Mazda, but the Volvo is pricey if you want to power match, and also a crossover. With the Audi, it may come down to price and how badly you don’t want to be seen in a poser’s car.

So we now live in a world where one of the most capable hatchbacks on sale is a Mazda with enough nice shit to also sweep the floor with the entire varsity team of premium and luxury automakers. It’d be good if this is what finally gets more attention for the 3.

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