The full line-up of vehicles from Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) continues to impress with multiple distinctions from leading consumer publications. In Kiplinger’s Personal Finance’s March 2011 issue (on sale today), the 2011 Mazda CX-9 is “Best in Class” in the Midsize and Large Crossovers category while the 2011 Mazda3 sedan and 2011 Mazda6 were listed as “Worth a Look” in the Cars Under $20,000 and Cars $25,000-$30,000 categories, respectively. The 2011 MX-5 Miata – the world’s best-selling two-seat roadster – was named “Best Sports Car for the Money” by U.S. News & World Report.
Kiplinger’s selects “Best in Class” and “Best New” vehicles based on performance, value, safety and editors’ driving impressions. Performance and value make up half of the score, safety accounts for roughly a third of the score and real-world driving impressions are weighted last. Winners are selected in 11 categories with the “Worth a Look” category added last year.
“The ‘Worth a Look’ designation spotlights five vehicles in each category that score high enough to be in serious contention for accolades,” said Jessica Anderson, associate editor, Kiplinger’s. “Although they didn’t win top honors, they deserve to be on buyers’ shopping lists.”
The CX-9 is a stylish and practical SUV that offers three rows of passenger space with the Zoom-Zoom finesse of a 273-horsepower, 3.7-liter V6 engine. Available in Sport, Touring and Grand Touring trims, the CX-9 also is a leader in safety with a 5-Star Crash-Safety Rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Models start from $29,135.
The Mazda3 compact sedan is powerful and fuel efficient with a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that offers 148 horsepower with an available 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine that offers 167 horsepower. Starting at $15,800, the sedan has an EPA fuel economy rating of 33 highway/24 city when equipped with the 2.0-liter engine (automatic) and 29 highway/22 city when equipped with the 2.5-liter engine (automatic).
The Mazda6 is another stylish, sporty mid-size sedan with a refined exterior design, roomy cabin and upscale trims to satisfy the most discriminating tastes. Starting at $19,990, the Mazda6 is available with two engines – 170-horsepower, 2.5-liter four-cylinder and 272-horsepower, 3.7-liter V6 – and also received a 5-Star Crash-Safety Rating from NHTSA.
The 2011 MX-5 Miata, which recently reached a record-breaking 900,000 units built, was named U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Sports Car for the Money” for an unprecedented third year in a row. The MX-5 is the only vehicle to win its category every year since the award’s inception.
“The MX-5 Miata proves that owning a sports car doesn’t have to break the bank,” said Jaime Page Deaton, managing editor, U.S. News Automotive. “Its fun-to-drive nature and great long-term value mean that owning an MX-5 is rewarding for drivers and their budgets.”
The “Best Car for the Money” awards are a combination of the U.S. News automotive rankings, which reflect the consensus opinion of the automotive press, and five-year total cost of ownership data courtesy of TrueCar, which provides among the most timely and comprehensive data in the industry from 30-day average transaction prices to five-year total cost of ownership including depreciation, maintenance and insurance. The MX-5 is equipped with an MZR-series 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces 167 horsepower (158 for automatic transmissions) and delivers 140 lb-ft of torque. Available with either a soft top or Power Retractable Hard Top, the MX-5 has a starting price of $23,110.