2019 Mazda 6 vs. 2019 BMW 3 Series Sedan

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the Mazda 6 and the 3 Series Sedan have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights and available around view monitors.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, its “Good” rating in the new passenger-side small overlap crash test, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Mazda 6 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2019, a rating granted to only 62 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The 3 Series Sedan has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

Mazda’s powertrain warranty covers the 6 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than BMW covers the 3 Series Sedan. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the 3 Series Sedan ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are over 69 percent more Mazda dealers than there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the 6’s warranty.

Reliability

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Mazda vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mazda third in reliability. BMW is ranked 8th.

Engine

The Mazda 6 Grand Touring/Signature’s standard 2.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 15 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 295) than the 330i’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Mazda 6 (except Turbo)’s fuel efficiency. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Mazda 6 uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended on Mazda 6 Grand Touring/Signature for maximum performance). The 3 Series Sedan requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the Mazda 6’s turning circle is .7 feet tighter than the 3 Series Sedan’s (36.7 feet vs. 37.4 feet). The Mazda 6’s turning circle is 2.5 feet tighter than the 3 Series Sedan xDrive’s (36.7 feet vs. 39.2 feet).

Chassis

The Mazda 6 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 200 to 350 pounds less than the BMW 3 Series Sedan.

The Mazda 6 (except Sport) offers available computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The Mazda 6 has .2 inches more front legroom, 3.5 inches more rear legroom and .5 inches more rear shoulder room than the 3 Series Sedan.

Ergonomics

The Mazda 6 offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends the Mazda 6, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Mazda 6 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 2 of the last 6 years. The 3 Series Sedan has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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