When compared to its naturally-aspirated siblings.
Mazda has built some class-leading cars recently. Universally praised for their build quality, safety, and affordability one thing that has been missing is some true performance. Mazda addressed this issue by introducing a 250-horsepower turbo variant of its wildly popular Mazda3 to much fanfare, dubbed the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo, and with it a new naming convention for future models. With more power comes more responsibility, and costs, but a recent announcement by the EPA has made potential buyers even keener for the more powerful car.
The EPA has recently released its official fuel economy figures for the Mazda3 2.5 Turbo. Running on regular fuel, the Mazda3 Sedan will return a respectable 23/32/27 mpg on the city/highway/combined cycle, while the hatchback version will get 23/31/26 mpg. Using regular fuel on the new turbo motor won't blow it up, but it sees the car's power figures drop from 250 hp and 320 lb-ft of torque down to a miserable 227 hp and 310 lb-ft.
The most fuel-efficient Mazda3 on offer is the front-wheel-drive 2.0-liter naturally-aspirated sedan which will return a figure of 28/36/31 mpg city/highway/combined.
The 2.0-liter engine, producing 155 hp, will be the obvious choice if fuel economy is the only focus, but Mazda also offers a naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine kicking out 186 hp. This engine is rated at a combined 30 mpg in sedan form, and 29 mpg in the hatchback. These numbers are all measured on FWD cars, but AWD is also an option. The AWD cars see a drop in economy to 28 mpg for the sedan, and 27 mpg for the hatchback. With an additional 64 hp on tap, and a standard AWD drivetrain, the new turbo model will lose only 1 mpg to the naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter car. Now that's a bargain.