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The 2016 Mazda3 vs. the 2016 Honda Civic near Sacramento, CA

Honda Has Stepped Up Its Game for 2016, but Mazda is Still Top Dog

Mimicry is the greatest form of flattery, right? While the 2016 Mazda3 vs. the 2016 Honda Civic near Sacramento, CA, is going to be a close battle, there’s nothing better than the original. The Mazda3 outshines the Civic in performance, aesthetic, and safety, making Mazda the hands-down winner.

The 2016 Honda Civic has amped up its stand-alone features and updated its modest look since 2012, but it still hasn’t completely caught up to the Mazda3. Both offer a 2.0-liter I4 engine on their base models, but there’s a big difference in power. The Honda Civic gets 158 horsepower and only 138 lbs.-ft. of torque, whereas the Mazda3 produces 155 horsepower and is tuned for 150 lbs.-ft. of torque, 12 lbs.-ft. more than the Civic, which will definitely be noticed when accelerating. To put it in numerical terms, the Mazda3 gets from 0-60 MPH in 7.5 seconds1 and the Honda chugs up to meet it around nine seconds2.

With all that extra torque, though, the Mazda3 doesn’t sacrifice fuel economy. Granted, the Honda Civic doesn’t either, but the Mazda3 just does it slightly better. The Mazda3 gets an amazing 34 MPG combined3, which breaks down to 30 MPG in the city3 and 41 MPG on the highway3! The Civic doesn’t do poorly, but comes in lower than the Mazda3. The Civic gets 27/40/31 MPGcity/hwy/combined. It’s close, but the Mazda3 still wins, especially when you take into account that the Mazda3 can fit nearly one more gallon into its tank than the Civic can.

The head-to-head between the 2016 Mazda3 vs. the 2016 Honda Civic near Sacramento, CA, continues on with the safety ratings. The Mazda3 is an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Top Pick+, garnering the highest rating of “good” in its moderate-overlap and small-overlap frontal-offset crash tests. It received a “good” rating for side-impact, roof-strength, and in whiplash protection tests. It got high marks in government crash tests, as well, earning 5 out of 5 stars for overall crash protection, total frontal protection, and total side protection. That’s pretty much 360-degree protection. The Honda Civic cannot claim the same accolades.

The Mazda3 also boasts more tech-based safety features, such as the head-up display4, adaptive headlights5, and rear-cross traffic alert6. The Mazda3 is also available with Mazda’s Smart City Brake Support7, which is especially useful for city dwellers. It’s a special Forward Mitigation Collision System that works at low speeds – it stops the car if the driver doesn’t react to an imminent collision. With the dense wall-to-wall traffic on I-405, you also might find it useful on the highway. Mazda also employs the use of i-ELOOP8, which helps with fuel economy that repurposes all of that energy used braking and uses it to power the vehicle when you start moving again. Yes, this is awesome as it sounds. And the Civic most definitely does not have that.

Though the 2016 Mazda3 vs. the 2016 Honda Civic near Sacramento, CA, was a close battle, the Mazda3 comes out on top. With its focus on fuel economy, safety, and performance, it’s not only a top pick for the IIHS, but at Mazda of Elk Grove, too. Stop by for a test drive today!

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1. Information courtsey of

2. Information courtesy of

3. EPA-estimed. Actual mileage may vary. 

4. When properly equipped. 

5. This innovative system works automatically to maximize your opportunity to use your high beams and, on the flip side, dim your lights when it detects approaching vehicles or vehicles in front of you in your lane.

6. Always check your mirrors. Be aware of the traffic around you.

7. Smart City Brake Support operates under certain low-speed conditions between about 2 and 18 mph. It is not a substitute for safe and attentive driving. Factors including movement and shape of the object in front of the vehicle, weather and road conditions can all impact automatic stopping.

8. When properly equipped.