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The 250-Horsepower 2021 Mazda3 Turbo Hatchback Starts at $30,900

Mazda's peppy hatchback arrives at an upmarket price.

Mazda has nailed down how to make an enjoyable car with the Miata, especially the ND, with its other cars like the Mazda3 hatchback sharing the same fun DNA. What enthusiasts have been asking for, however, is the same thing they’ve always begged for in the Miata, and now they’re getting their wish. The 2021 Mazda3 hatchback will not only come with a 2.5-liter turbo-four engine with 250 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque—but also with all-wheel-drive.

The cost for this much Mazda isn’t cheap, though. The sedan starts at $29,900 and you’ll have to pay $30,900 for the especially suave-looking hatchback.

That price moving north is all a part of Mazda’s currently ill-fated plan to move the brand upmarket and attract more luxury buyers. Certainly, the Mazda3 can compete in this segment with its sharp handling, looks, and interior, but a lack of cash on hand and the tough job of shaking a budget-brand image is in the way. 

In addition to adding this new turbocharged engine offering, the new hotter Mazda3 is also available with some new body trim pieces. The Premium Plus package ($2,850 on the hatchback) adds a new front air dam and rear spoiler. You can also get an additional package on top of that for $1,075 which adds a rear diffuser and some aggressive side skirts. But if you don’t want the other trimmings of the Premium Plus package you can just get the aero parts for $1,900. There are also new 18-inch forged BBS wheels available for a steep $918.95 per wheel. I’m not sure if I would be willing to pay $3,675 dollars for the sake of some black wheels, but to each their own.

And if all of this sounds a bit pricey, you don’t have to worry if you’re still in the mood for a Mazda. The base 2021 Mazda3 sedan with the 2.0-liter engine starts at just $20,500, while the hatchback with the 2.5S four-cylinder (there is no 2.0-liter hatchback) starts at $22,500. AWD on the sedan and hatchback starts at $24,100, and $25,100, respectively, and is only available on 2.5S or 2.5 Turbo-equipped cars. 

If you just have to have a stick shift, it’s only available on the 2.5S hatch. A turbo, AWD, stick shift Mazda3 is still unlikely. 

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