2019 Mazda 6 vs. 2019 Lexus ES Series

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Mazda 6 has standard Whiplash Reducing Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash Reducing Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The ES Series doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

To help make backing safer, the Mazda 6’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The ES Series doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the Mazda 6 and the ES Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras and available around view monitors.

Warranty

There are over 2 times as many Mazda dealers as there are Lexus dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the 6’s warranty.

Engine

The Mazda 6 Grand Touring/Signature’s standard 2.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 43 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 267) than the ES 350’s standard 3.5 DOHC V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the Mazda 6 (base engine) is faster than the ES 300h:

 

Mazda6

ES Series

Zero to 60 MPH

7.3 sec

7.8 sec

Quarter Mile

15.6 sec

16 sec

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 ES Series doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

The Mazda 6 has 3.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the ES Series Hybrid’s standard fuel tank (16.4 vs. 13.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Mazda 6 Touring/Signature’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the ES Series:

 

Mazda6 Turbo

ES Series

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

12 inches

The Mazda 6 stops much shorter than the ES Series:

 

Mazda 6

ES Series

 

60 to 0 MPH

121 feet

140 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

137 feet

139 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Mazda 6 has larger tires than the ES Series (225/55R17 vs. 215/55R17).

Suspension and Handling

The Mazda 6 has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The ES Series’ suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The Mazda 6 Grand Touring handles at .84 G’s, while the ES 300h pulls only .78 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Mazda 6 Grand Touring executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.3 seconds quicker than the ES 300h (27.1 seconds @ .63 average G’s vs. 28.4 seconds @ .6 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Mazda 6’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the ES Series’ (36.7 feet vs. 38 feet). The Mazda 6’s turning circle is 2.1 feet tighter than the ES Series w/18-19” wheels’ (36.7 feet vs. 38.8 feet).

Chassis

The Mazda 6 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 150 to 400 pounds less than the Lexus ES Series.

The Mazda 6 is 3.2 inches shorter than the ES Series, making the Mazda 6 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The Mazda 6 has .9 inches more front headroom and .8 inches more rear shoulder room than the ES Series.

Cargo Capacity

The Mazda 6’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The ES Series doesn’t offer folding rear seats.

Servicing Ease

A maintenance reminder system is standard on the Mazda 6 to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes and air filter replacement based on odometer mileage. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Lexus doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the ES Series.

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 ES Series doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Mazda 6 Grand Touring Reserve and Signature have a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The ES Series doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

Consumer Reports rated the Mazda 6’s headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the ES Series’ headlights, which were rated “Fair.”

Both the Mazda 6 and the ES Series offer available heated front seats. The Mazda 6 Grand Touring Reserve/Signature also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the ES Series.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Mazda 6 and the Lexus ES Series, 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 ES Series has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

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

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