Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: A specsheet comparison of two popular beauties

Oct 15, 2019
  • Table of contents
  • 1. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Introduction
  • 2. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3 Philippines: Exterior
  • 3. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Interior
  • 4. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Engine and Performance
  • 5. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Safety
  • 6. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3 Philippines price
  • 7. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3 Philippines: Verdict
Let's compare the Honda Civic vs Mazda 3, two of the most popular compact sedan models currently available in the Philippines today.

1. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Introduction

If you’re in the market for a compact sedan right now but are still unsure which model to choose, then you’re in luck, because we’ll be pitting the Honda Civic vs Mazda 3.

For purposes of simplicity, we’ll be comparing their top variants: the Honda Civic RS Turbo and the Mazda 3 2.0 Skyactiv Premium. Let's get our Honda Civic vs Mazda 3 comparison started with Philkotse.com

2019 Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo - Full Review

2019 Mazda3 - Review & Road Test

2. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3 Philippines: Exterior

Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Dimensions
 
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo
Mazda 3 2.0 Skyactiv Premium
Length (mm)
4,633
4,660
Width (mm)
1,799
1,795
Height (mm)
1,416
1,440
Wheelbase (mm)
2,700
2,725
Ground Clearance
133 mm
NA

A quick glance at both models suggest that the Civic RS Turbo has the more superior dimensions over the Mazda 3, but it's actually the other way around. The Mazda is 27 mm longer end to end, sits 24 mm higher, and has a wheelbase that's 25 mm longer. The Honda Civic though is wider by 4 mm.

A picture of the 2020 Honda Civic RS Turbo

Honda's modern designs tend to be on the more youthful side of things

In terms of styling, the Mazda 3’s fluid and elegant design make it pop out, especially compared to other compact sedans in the market. The Kodo design language really did a lot of good with the model’s aesthetics, resulting in a very premium-looking exterior sculpted with intersecting lines.

Meanwhile, the Civic RS Turbo now has a more grown-up appearance than its bigger Type R brother. But compared with the overall shape and fluid design of the Mazda 3, the Civic seems a bit less evolved, even sporting a couple of faux air vents that some may not be too crazy about.

A picture of the 2020 Mazda 3 sedan

In comparison, the 2020 Mazda 3 is sleeker and is more mature-looking

Nevertheless, the tenth-generation Civic is by no means an ugly car, and we do appreciate the increased rake on the roofline, as well as the stance. Otherwise, it’s a far cry from the look of earlier Civics like the fifth-generation machines of the 90s, the FD, the seventh-generation “Dimension” and the eight-generation FD.

>>> Suggested car comparison for your further reference:  Auto brawl 101: Mazda 6 vs Honda Civic in the Philippines

3. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Interior

Feature
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo
Mazda 3 2.0 Skyactiv Premium
Cruise Control
With
-
Front Parking Sensors
-
With
Rear Parking Sensors
With
With
Leather Upholstery
With
With
Push Start Button
With
With
Air Conditioning System
Dual-zone Automatic
Dual-Zone Automatic Climate Control w/ Rear Ventilation
Entertainment System
7-inch touchscreen advanced display
6 Speakers
 8.8 inch LCD Monitor, 12 Bose speakers
Connectivity
USB, Bluetooth, Aux, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay
Bluetooth, USB, AUX, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay
Navigation Ready
Yes
Yes
Sunroof
-
With
Power Steering
With
With
Power Windows
With
With
Power Outlet
With
With
Steering Wheel Audio Control
With
With
Keyless Entry
With
With

When it comes to interior features, the Mazda 3 and the Civic RS areas both well-equipped. Front-seat ergonomics are top-notch, with the sensible placement of the necessary controls making them easier to find.

In terms of comfort and cargo space, both the Mazda 3 and the Honda Civic RS Turbo are competent sedans that perform well as daily drivers. On the Mazda 3 however, a good amount of engine noise penetrates the cabin. While some passengers might find it objectionable, many drivers rather appreciate it in a car; after all, the Mazda 3 was engineered for both sportiness and practicality.

As for the Civic, it seems that Honda has designed the car to cater to a more general crowd. We say that because there isn’t much engine noise permeating the cabin, save for some compressor noise when you transition from full throttle too hard braking.

A picture of the 2020 Mazda 3's front cabin

The cockpit on the Mazda 3...

A picture of the 2020 Honda Civic RS Turbo's front cabin

And the one aboard the Honda Civic RS Turbo

>>> Full-scale review of these two models can be found at:

4. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Engine and Performance

 
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo
Mazda 3 2.0 Skyactiv Premium
Displacement
1,498 cc
1,998 cc
Number of Cylinders
4
4
Number of Valves
16
16
Transmission Type
CVT
6-speed Automatic w/Sport Mode
Drivetrain
Front-wheel-drive
Front-wheel-drive
Max Output (HP)
171
152
Max Torque (Nm)
220 Nm
200 Nm
Fuel Type
Gasoline
Gasoline
Fuel Capacity
47 L
51 L

Both the Mazda 3 and the Honda Civic RS Turbo make use of a front-wheel-drive layout. Under the Mazda 3’s hood is a naturally-aspirated 2.0-liter Skyactive-G inline-4 gasoline engine that makes 152 horsepower and 200 Nm of torque which, while respectable, falls a bit short when compared to the 171 horsepower and 220 Nm of torque on the 1.5-liter turbo VTEC. 

In terms of handling, the Mazda 3 2020 benefits from the G-Vectoring Control Plus which keeps it planted on corners. We also appreciate the 3's proprietary SkyActiv-Drive automatic transmission with paddle shifters, as it exhibits infinitely better responsiveness than the sluggish CVT aboard the Civic RS Turbo.

Mazda 3 2020 engine

SkyActiv Engine under the hood of the Mazda 3

The Honda comports itself quite well to make for a good daily driver on wide-open roads, but the Mazda 3 can outmaneuver the Civic in stop-and-go traffic and on twisty roads. We feel that the CVT is a waste of the Civic RS Turbo's abilities, and we're crossing our fingers that Honda brings in the manual variant. 

For fuel consumption, the Honda Civic 2020 manages 9.5 km/l while the Mazda 3 is marginally better at around 10.5 km/L.

If we have to compare these two against other similarly-priced compact sedans, both the Civic RS Turbo and the Mazda 3 can blow the Toyota Altis out of the water in terms of performance; the latter, after all, was designed for more comfort instead of sportiness.

Honda Civic 2020 engine

Type R engine of the Civic 2020

5. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3: Safety

 
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo
Mazda 3 2.0 Skyactiv Premium
Dual Front Airbags
With
With
Side Airbag
With
With
Curtain Airbag
With
With
Knee Airbag
-
With
With
With
Anti-lock Braking
With
With
Immobilizer
With
With
Security Alarm
With
With
Stability Control
With
With
Electronic Door Locks
With
With
ISOFIX
With
With
Land Departure Warning
-
With
Blind-Spot Detection
-
With
Hill Start Assist
With
-
Parking Cameras
Multi-view reverse camera
360-degree view camera

The Mazda 3 has a slight advantage over the Civic, with an extra knee airbag that helps in frontal collisions by reducing leg injuries. The Mazda 3 also offers more in terms of active driver-assist systems like a lane departure warning and blind-spot detection, apart from an excellent 360-degree view camera which eliminates blind spots for the driver.

Mazda has seemingly invested in more on-board safety tech, although it lacks hill start assist that the Civic has. 

>>> Widen your car search with our daily-updated cars for sale section.

6. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3 Philippines price

Variant
Price
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo CVT
Php 1,608,000
Honda Civic 1.8 S CVT
Php 1,115,000
Honda Civic 1.8 E CVT
Php 1,185,000

>>> Keep updated with the latest Honda Civic price list with monthly payment details

Variant
Price
Mazda 3 2.0 SkyActiv Premium AT
Php 1,495,000
Mazda 3 1.5 SkyActiv Elite AT
Php 1,295,000

>>> View full Mazda 3 price list and estimated monthly payment

In terms of pricing and variants, the Honda Civic presents more options for a wider range of budgets. It also brings affordability to the table, with the mid-range Civic 1.8 S being Php180,000 cheaper than the base-model Mazda 3 Elite.

For the top-spec variants though, the RS Turbo Civic is priced a little higher than the Mazda 3 premium, with the disparity attributable to the Civic’s beefier turbocharged engine.

Interestingly, the Sportback variants of the Mazda 3 retail for PhP1.3 million to PhP1.5 million, still below the Civic’s range-topper. For now, the Philippine-spec Civic doesn’t have a hatchback variant, although this might change sometime in the future.

7. Honda Civic vs Mazda 3 Philippines: Verdict

The CVT on the RS Turbo aside, we think that the Civic is still a pretty solid car overall. It’s a bit pricey though, the Mazda 3 likely offers better value for money on account of its suite of on-board tech, not to mention the Mazda 3 is more fun to drive thanks to its brilliant G-Vectoring technology and the SkyActiv-Drive automatic transmission.

One thing Honda has going for it though is a cemented reputation when it comes to aftermarket parts; little wonder why Honda has been the darling of custom tuners for years. Mechanics and technicians have gained enough experience with Hondas to come up with some really insane (and awesome) builds.

 In the American market, Honda has managed to be on top of the customer satisfaction study by J.D. Power for two years now, so it looks like they've stumbled upon a successful formula on how to keep their customers happy.

Honda Civic vs Mazda 3

In the end, the choice is still up to the buyer

Source: Cesar Guiderone Miguel

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