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This car has been superseded by a newer model, click here to go to the latest Mazda 3 Hatchback review.

Parkers overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 3.5
Mazda 3 Hatchback (04-08) - rated 3.5 out of 5
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PROS

Well equipped, good to drive, decent rear passenger space

CONS

Dreary and dated cabin, bland image, firm ride, lacks refinement

At a glance

New price £11,056 - £18,690
Used price £270 - £4,715
Fuel economy 29 - 60 mpg
Road tax cost £125 - £555
Insurance group 9 - 34 How much is it to insure?

PROS

Well equipped, good to drive, decent rear passenger space

CONS

Dreary and dated cabin, bland image, firm ride, lacks refinement

Mazda 3 Hatchback rivals

The 3 is Mazda's Ford Focus-size hatchback, with a dash of style from the RX-8 coupe. It follows in the vein of other recent Mazdas, which means it's good to drive, very reliable, well equipped and spacious. Unfortunately the once exciting design now looks bland and the 3 hasn't aged particularly well - inside or out. The cabin has some cheap plastics and the design is drab.

There's a decent choice of engines though, including some economical diesels while a facelift in 2006 including a new front end and changes under the skin that made it better to drive. Further revisions followed in 2008 which made the trim levels simpler and improved equipment levels while a Takara model was launched that comes with sporty looks, a rear spoiler and unique alloys.

While it's a worthy hatchback, newer rivals have more panache and refinement.

Mazda 3 Hatchback rivals

Other Mazda 3 (2004 - 2008) models: