Honda Civic vs. Mazda3: Which compact saves more?
So much in advance: The mix of 2.0-liter petrol engine, electric motor and extra generator unit, including a special power distribution without a gearbox, actually works very economically and unexpectedly without complaint in the Civic e:HEV – we are definitely surprised.
The Mazda breaks its consumption promise
The slightly electrified 2.0er with delicate supercharging, which ignites according to the Skyactiv-X principle, should not consume more than 5.3 liters of Super per 100 kilometers. Sounds great – we’ll check that out.
The Civic has a mid-range feel
First to the character of the two. After a few meters in the Honda, the question arises: is this really a compact car? The Civic looks airy, is full, touches well, makes something. Could also be middle class. In fact, the Honda beats the Mazda in terms of space and sense of space by important points. In addition, the trunk is larger, the rear seat can be folded more easily, the door cutouts are larger.
kW (HP) at 1/min
Nm at 1/min
test car tires
Exhaust gas CO2
gasoline particulate filter
trailer load used/unused
Length Width Height
Test car price (is evaluated)
Four-cylinder + 2 electric motors
In addition, the Civic is tuned to be more comfortable. Where the sporty, tighter Mazda finds it difficult to iron over it smoothly, the Honda hugs the road more gently. The complex drive system also hardly bothers you. The interplay of pure electric drive, exclusive combustion engine driving and combined variants via clutches and power switches works audibly, but in the end it is pleasantly cultivated and hidden away.
In terms of quality, Honda could improve
This sometimes feels very passive for the driver, especially when accelerating slightly, but it always moves smoothly and even at high speeds it still pushes forward. One can say here: The Honda is the more universal, more sociable car in this test. But it’s a pity: The Civic seems unlovingly mounted, the unfinished painted areas in the entrances and unstable armrests sensitively disturb the impression of quality.
Weight distribution v./h.
Turning circle left/right
from 100 km/h cold
from 100 km/h warm
at 50 km/h
at 130 km/h
Average of the 155 km test lap (deviation from the WLTP specification)
CO2 (test consumption)
Range (test consumption)
Worse still, Honda follows the now-typical quirk of controlling everything from the central touchscreen. Menus and sub-levels are plentiful, “target points” for selecting the functions are tiny, the work surface is far away – this makes operation strenuous, ultimately the system distracts a lot.
The operation works better in the Mazda3
That works better in the Mazda: the reason is the small knob in the center console. Here you can GPS and control infotainment perfectly. As in the Honda, the Mazda driver also looks at a clearly drawn round speedometer, the air conditioning is set using a rotary control – that’s how it should be.
Elaborate engine technology in the Mazda is hardly noticeable
As with the Honda, there is little evidence of the complex inner workings of the 2.0 engine. The four-cylinder runs linearly through its speed range, there’s not a lot of thrust – despite the supercharging of the machine – but just as little strained undertones.
Space in front
Space in the back
sense of space
impression of quality
seats in front
seats in the back
Interior noise (measured value)
driving dynamics rating
Connected Car Score
Test CO2 emission
Placement Trait Score
price in euro
Price per rating point
Value for money
However, the Skyactiv-X technology does not work as well as Honda’s savings concept. According to our measurements, the Mazda3 burned an average of 6.7 liters of Super – at least 1.3 liters more than the Civic. It’s a shame for the Mazda, especially as it brings the more mature front seats (with better lateral support) that are more suitable for long journeys.
For the sake of completeness: Even if the 3 lags behind in the sprint, on the highway it casually hangs on the Honda, which is limited to 180 km/h. But that’s not an important discipline when fuel prices are around two euros.