Pecheles Automotive Compares 2018 Volkswagen Jetta Sedan VS 2018 Mazda 3 Near Greenville, NC

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2018 Volkswagen Jetta Sedan

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2018 Volkswagen Jetta Sedan

VS
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2018 Mazda 3

Safety Comparison

The Jetta has standard post collision braking, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Mazda 3 doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

The Jetta GLI has standard Park Distance Control to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or in front of their vehicle. The Mazda 3 doesn’t offer a front parking aid.

Both the Jetta and the Mazda 3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Volkswagen Jetta is safer than the Mazda 3:

 

Jetta

Mazda 3

 

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

41%

48%

Leg Forces (l/r)

255/93 lbs.

356/256 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Volkswagen Jetta is safer than the Mazda 3:

 

Jetta

Mazda 3

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

112

245

Chest Movement

.7 inches

1.3 inches

Abdominal Force

223 G’s

276 G’s

Hip Force

321 lbs.

465 lbs.

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

58 G’s

72 G’s

Hip Force

399 lbs.

575 lbs.

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

204

269

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty Comparison

The Jetta comes with a full 6-year/72000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car. The Mazda 3’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 3 years and 36,000 miles sooner.

The Jetta’s corrosion warranty is 5 years longer than the Mazda 3’s (10 vs. 5 years).

Reliability Comparison

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Jetta has a 140-amp alternator. The Mazda 3’s standard 100-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Jetta second among compact cars in their 2017 Initial Quality Study. The Mazda 3 isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2017 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Volkswagen vehicles are better in initial quality than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Volkswagen 10th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 32 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 27th, below the industry average.

Engine Comparison

The Jetta has more powerful engines than the Mazda 3:

 

Horsepower

Torque

Jetta 1.4T 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

150 HP

184 lbs.-ft.

Jetta 1.8T 1.8 turbo 4 cyl.

170 HP

184 lbs.-ft.

Jetta GLI 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

210 HP

207 lbs.-ft.

Mazda 3 Sport 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

155 HP

150 lbs.-ft.

Mazda 3 Touring/Grand Touring 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

184 HP

185 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the Jetta GLI 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the Mazda 3 Sport 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. (manual transmissions tested):

 

Jetta

Mazda 3

Zero to 60 MPH

6.3 sec

7.8 sec

Quarter Mile

14.9 sec

16.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

96.3 MPH

87.6 MPH

As tested in Motor Trend the Jetta 1.8T 1.8 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the Mazda 3 Touring/Grand Touring 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

 

Jetta

Mazda 3

Zero to 60 MPH

7.3 sec

7.4 sec

Quarter Mile

15.5 sec

15.6 sec

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Jetta 1.4T Manual gets better highway fuel mileage than the Mazda 3 Sport 4-Door Manual (28 city/40 hwy vs. 28 city/38 hwy).

The Jetta has 1.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the Mazda 3 (14.5 vs. 13.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Jetta’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Mazda 3:

 

Jetta

Jetta GLI

Mazda 3 2.0

Mazda 3 2.5

Front Rotors

11.3 inches

12.3 inches

11.02 inches

11.61 inches

The Jetta stops much shorter than the Mazda 3:

 

Jetta

Mazda 3

 

60 to 0 MPH

111 feet

126 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Jetta’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Mazda 3 (225/45R17 vs. 215/45R18).

The Jetta’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Mazda 3 Sport’s standard 60 series tires. The Jetta GLI’s tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Mazda 3 Touring/Grand Touring’s 45 series tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Jetta GLI handles at .90 G’s, while the Mazda 3 4-Door pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Jetta GLI executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.2 seconds quicker than the Mazda 3 4-Door (26.3 seconds @ .66 average G’s vs. 27.5 seconds @ .62 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the Jetta is quieter than the Mazda 3 4-Door:

 

Jetta

Mazda 3

At idle

38 dB

39 dB

Full-Throttle

72 dB

78 dB

70 MPH Cruising

71 dB

71 dB

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Jetta has a much larger trunk than the Mazda 3 4-Door (15.7 vs. 12.4 cubic feet).

A standard locking glovebox keeps your small valuables safer in the Jetta. The Mazda 3 doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Ergonomics Comparison

The power windows standard on both the Jetta and the Mazda 3 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Jetta is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Mazda 3 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Jetta’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Mazda 3’s passenger windows don’t open or close automatically.

If the windows are left down on the Jetta the driver can raise them all using the key in the outside lock cylinder; on a hot day the driver can lower the windows. The driver of the Mazda 3 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are optional on the Jetta to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Mazda 3 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

The Jetta’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Mazda charges extra for heated mirrors on the Mazda 3.

The Jetta GLI/SEL’s standard GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that plots alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service not available in all areas.) The Mazda 3’s available navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Jetta is less expensive to operate than the Mazda 3 because typical repairs cost less on the Jetta than the Mazda 3, including $16 less for front brake pads and $45 less for a fuel pump.

Recommendations Comparison

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Volkswagen Jetta and the Mazda 3, based on reliability, safety and performance.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Jetta third among compact cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Mazda 3 isn’t in the top three.

The Volkswagen Jetta outsold the Mazda 3 by 27% during 2016.

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