The completely-redesigned 2014 Mazda Mazda3 3i Touring hatchback perfectly illustrates why, in the world of compact cars, if you stop moving forward even for a second, you're dead. The idea that a tiny company like Mazda could muster up the resources to create what is essentially a perfect, technologically-advanced entry-level car - and then charge a reasonable price for the privilege of owning one - must have been a shocking one for giants like Ford, General Motors, and Volkswagen, each of whom have also revamped their compact hatches in recent years. If little Mazda can do it, and do it so well, then there's really no reason for potential customers to tolerate a lackluster effort from organizations with billions more in the bank.
It might sound like hyperbole, but hear me out: over the course of this review it will become clear that the 2014 Mazda Mazda3 hatchback is one of the best compact vehicles money can buy, and one that's deserving of your full attention in a universe swirling with Golfs, Sonics, and Focuses. Parity has arrived on the small car scene, and the Mazda3 is what it looks like.