By Ian Strachan
If the Mazda6 is an upper medium sector car and the Mazda3 is lower medium, then you’d expect the Mazda2 to be a small car.
But it’s not. Or at least it doesn’t feel as if it is.
The Mazda2 is certainly in the supermini sector, but a clever use of available space makes it feel much larger. Big windows all round give the car an open, airy feel, belying its true size when you sit inside.
It also has a high specification compared to many of its rivals, particularly in the GT version which I tested. In its latest iteration, the Mazda2 has bags of technology and is a very pleasant car to drive.
The Mazda2 is certainly a good looking car, streamlined with soft curves and a steeply sloping waistline down to distinctive, sporty headlights. But it’s inside where it really scores.
The cabin is a very pleasing place to be, thanks to a good use of quality trim materials and simple, well-placed instruments and dials. Standard equipment includes remote central locking, electric front windows, DAB radio and CD player, satellite navigation, parking sensors, auxiliary jack and USB points for MP3s and devices, steering wheel controls, air conditioning and electric exterior mirrors. My test car was fitted with lane control, heated front seats and automatic stop/start.
Head room and leg room is generous for a small car and with all that glass, visibility is superb.
Luggage room, at 280 litres, is excellent – among the most capacious in its class – and can be increased by folding the rear seats down
The 1.5 petrol engine in the GT is flexible and lively. Power from the 90 bhp unit is more than adequate – in fact it’s surprisingly brisk, with a 0-60 time of not much more than nine seconds. The gearshift for the manual five-speed box is smooth, with economical movement between changes and a comfortably long gear lever which falls easily to hand. The lack of a sixth gear isn’t noticeable.
It’s a frugal engine too, returning an impressive 62.8 miles to the gallon in mixed driving.
Price for the Mazda2 GT 1.5 90ps is a competitive £16,395 on the road.