The Mazda 3 Fastback is the four-door saloon version of the popular Mazda 3 hatchback.
It’s more stylish than the hatchback, and slightly more aerodynamic, too, and it offers a bigger, if slightly less practical, boot. Its main rivals are the Audi A3 Saloon and the VW Jetta, both of which are compact executive saloons that also offer five seats, four doors and a decently sized boot.
The Fastback takes the same approach as the regular Mazda 3 hatchback – instead of following the trend for downsizing engines and installing small turbocharged petrol motors, Mazda has come up with some radical non-turbocharged units. When combined with the firm’s already proven lightweight construction techniques, the 2.0-litre petrol engine in the Fastback delivers promising fuel economy and comparatively low CO2 emissions figures. The diesel models (which are turbocharged) are even more efficient.
However, the Fastback has to deliver more than just fuel efficiency to compete in this class. Read on over the next few pages to get our in depth impressions of the Mazda 3 Fastback, along with our recommendations for which trim levels and engines to choose.