2019 Mazda 3 Pricing: Engine and Content Upgrades Carry a Premium

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
2019 mazda 3 pricing engine and content upgrades carry a premium

Mazda’s next-generation 3 sedan and hatch heads to dealers in March, where buyers can kiss the idea of a “base” engine goodbye — at least until the innovative Skyactiv-X motor shows up. Until then, the 2019 3 fields just one power source: the 2.5-liter Skyactiv-G four-cylinder, which makes 186 horsepower and 186 lb-ft of torque.

While the new 3 doesn’t afford buyers any choice in the engine department, its drive wheels are another matter.

Mazda’s i-Activ all-wheel drive system appears as an option package offered on sedan and hatch models, enlivening the rear wheels for buyers who aren’t in the mood for a crossover. New standard tech also appears for 2019, concurrent with the disappearance of a manual transmission in all but one hatch trim level. Look elsewhere, and you’ll only find a six-speed automatic.

Bearing updated KODO design language, Mazda’s 2019 3 packs on extra cost, with the model range starting at $21,895, after destination, for a base 3 sedan. That’s $2,905 more than last year’s base manual sedan. Moving up to the Select package brings the sticker to $23,495, while the Preferred package sedan rings in at $25,095. Going Premium will cost you $27,395 after destination.

Interested in more compact car grip? The cheapest AWD sedan carries the Select package and retails for $24,895, but moving up through Preferred and Premium brings the range to a high point of $28,795.

On the hatchback side, the year-over-year price gap grows. At $24,495 after destination, a base front-drive hatch warrants an additional $4,455 outlay over the 2018 model. Of course, there’s no base 2.0-liter on board, nor is there a manual tranny, which carried a $1,050 premium in 2018.

It’s in the hatchback line where you’ll find the most variation. Mazda plans to offer a front-drive, manual transmission hatch with Premium package for the relatively lofty sum of $28,395. There’s also a base-model AWD hatch for $25,895. The rest of the AWD hatch line runs up the pricing ladder until you hit $29,795 for a Premium model.

The current model year also brings cylinder deactivation to the 2.5-liter, but only for hatch models, Premium package sedans, and AWD sedans. Elsewhere, new gear abounds. Mazda added a new suspension to its 2019 3 and dropped an 8.8-inch infotainment screen into the cabin. An eight-speaker audio system comes standard, as does LED headlamps and taillights, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, remote entry, among other niceties.

While sedans start out with 16-inch wheels, hatchbacks gain 18-inchers on the bottom end. Leatherette seating is another standard hatchback perk. Also, while sedan buyers need to move up to the Select package to gain a host of driver-assist features, the hatch further defends its price gain by offering that package’s features as standard.

The i-ActiveSense suite of safety features includes Driver Attention Alert to prod drowsy drivers back into coherence, Smart City Brake Support, Smart Brake Support, Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning with Lane-Keep Assist, High Beam Control, and Mazda Radar Cruise Control. Asking for more means shelling out for a loftier trim.

While Mazda hasn’t said when to expect the Skyactiv-X engine, a mill that blends the features of a gasoline and diesel engine for high-compression efficiency, it’s likely we’ll hear something this week. There’s a Mazda 3 first drive event taking place in California right now, and you can bet that question will be on everyone’s lips.

[Images: Mazda]

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  • Nels0300 Nels0300 on Jan 25, 2019

    “ You can complain that manual should be on the base, but then people complained when manuals were not on the top spec too.” No. No they didn’t. Mazda has always offered a manual across the trim range of the Mazda3. I understand it’s a business decision, but from an actual Mazda manual customer perspective, I don’t like it. Are you going to be cool when they ditch the manual entirely because it’s a business decision? How about dropping the conventional automatic and replacing with a CVT? Instead of zoom zoom, it’s gonna be zooooooooooooooooom. Because business decision, and because most people can’t tell the difference, just like most people won’t notice the torsion beam suspension.

    • Mike978 Mike978 on Jan 26, 2019

      You make a fair point. But they do still offer a manual and they offer a proper automatic. So they are a long way from being Nissan or other mainstream brands who offer no manuals and only CVTs.

  • Nels0300 Nels0300 on Jan 25, 2019

    I should point out, for anyone bummed out by this new Mazda3..... The 2020 Corolla!!!! swaps out the torsion beam rear suspension, replaces with an IRS, AND offers a manual on the mid level trim. The Corolla!!!!!!!!! I drove the iM hatchback with a manual when I was shopping, it rode and handled very well, it just needed more power. Now it has more power.

    • See 1 previous
    • Mike978 Mike978 on Jan 26, 2019

      @mike978 I also noted that if you bought a Corolla hatchback XSE with a manual then they would not let you buy the packs to get navigation or upgraded sound system, unlike the Mazda. Surely that is wrong!

  • Jeff S I ignore the commercials. Never owned a Mazda but I would definitely look at one and seriously consider it. I would take a Honda, Toyota, or Mazda over any German vehicle at least they are long lasting, reliable, and don't cost an arm and a leg to maintain.
  • GregLocock The predictable hysteria and repetition of talking points in the meeja is quite funny. it does not divide Oxford into six zones. it restricts access at 6 locations , one on each road, to reduce congestion in the town centre. Florence, which faces the same issue, traffic and narrow historic streets, lined with historic buildings, simply closed the entire town centre off. Don't see anybody whining about that.
  • Jeff S I have rented from Hertz before and never encountered this but if I had I would sue them. Would not want a gun pointed at me and thrown in jail for renting a car.
  • Arthur Dailey I did use a service pre COVID to get the pricing that the dealers were alleged to have paid the manufacturer. It also provided 'quotes' from multiple dealers .
  • Arthur Dailey Has anyone else concluded that we may have a new 'troll' on this site?
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