2017 Mazda2 Neo Road Test and Review…
Well here it easy, the access point into the Mazda line-up - the Mazda2 Neo.
By definition this is the ground floor, yet I’m pleased to say you really don’t feel shortchanged in what is a like-able little budget-price offering from the ever-rising Japanese car company.
We’re talking about a price of just $14,990! How cheap is that?
I had the keys to the most affordable offering, the manual, and I actually enjoyed driving it.
It’s easy to drive, just the right size and more than willing if you’re happy to really drive it.
For a young driver the Mazda2 Neo is ideal.
Better than you might expect legroom all-round, a decent-sized boot, top safety credentials and all in a stylish little package.
There are some compromises, no sat-nav, or reverse camera, no auto headlights, no auto wipers and you don’t get a centre armrest or storage bin either.
Oh, and at this end of the market you have to be happy with plastic wheel covers.
But there’s no compromise on safety - a five star ANCAP safety rating features across the Mazda2 line-up.
Rear parking sensors are a great addition (especially without a rear camera), and you get Bluetooth, a good sound system, easy to locate/convenient AUX/USB inputs, voice commands and power windows/mirrors.
The glove box is of a good size, though the door pockets are really only large enough for a water bottle.
Generally quite good visibility as well, though the chunky A pillars do need to be looked around at times - just take a little extra care with that 3/4 visibility.
The fit and finish and feel of the cabin is reminiscent of much more expensive models and the ride, steering and turning circle are terrific.
Fuel economy? Great too - I averaged 7.5L/100km in my week of city driving.
If you want the auto transmission you’re up for an extra $2,000 and Soul Red Metallic is the only metallic/premium paint colour that comes at a premium - only $250.
The Mazda2 Neo offers first time car buyers, those on a budget, or anyone who just likes practical/no-frills motoring the chance to have a safe, quality car for well under $20,000.
NUTS and BOLTS - 2017 Mazda2 Neo
Engine: 1.5 litre petrol producing 79kW and 139Nm
Transmission: Six-speed manual or six-speed automatic
Safety: Five stars
Warranty: Three years
Price: from $14,990