3 Mazda Models Destined to Become Future Classics

Like the RX-8, the Mazdaspeed3 is also a high-performance child of the early 2000s. It was the hot-hatch version of Mazda’s compact sedan and hatchback, the Mazda 3. Introduced in 2007, the Mazdaspeed3 originally came with a turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine producing 263 horsepower. That was a considerably high horsepower number for its day, especially for a front-wheel-drive vehicle. However, with big power and a front-wheel-drive layout, torque steer was a problem on the Mazdaspeed3. Bury the throttle, and it would veer sideways, especially in lower gears. It was alarming but gave the hot hatch a bit of a theatrical feel.

More than just something you could drive fast, it was a car you had to be careful driving. It was dangerous to put your right foot all the way to the floor, so you were cautious when you did. Obviously, this kind of driving flaw wasn’t ideal for on-track performance or even everyday driving, but the Mazdaspeed3 was still entertaining to drive, and it had the added practicality of being a hatchback. Today, the Mazda3 hatchback is still available with a turbocharged engine, but it’s more refined and restrained. This refinement makes the newest Mazda3 better to drive, but it’s not quite as quirky — and quirkiness will certainly help elevate the Mazdaspeed3 to “classic” status in the future.

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