Well this started out as a fairly normal Mazda3 Review. But then I spiraled down a rabbit hole lol. For the record, the Mazda3 is just fine. But that’s my issue here… it’s just fine. Where are the exceptionals?! The greats?!
Damnit. It’s gonna sound like I’m picking on the Mazda3, and I am. But NOT because it’s a bad car. Actually – it’s got some pretty slick, well-designed features to it. But they’re all whispers. And THAT’S the problem here. The good traits within the Mazda3 are not getting the spotlight they deserve, because the car overall is failing to stand out & really catch hearts. And it’s way bigger then just the Mazda3.
All across the country, crossovers are replacing hatchbacks. Squeezing them out of existence. And the Mazda3 is another car that… gives you absolutely zero reason to want to fight it. Honestly. What does the Mazda3 bring to the table?? Where’s the pulse??
Conversely – Ford had a great thing going with the ST/RS line, but they quit the game at halftime.
And it’s us, the BUYERS, who often get blamed for these lack-luster failures in car-buying trends. But as an enthusiast, I’m getting tired of taking the brunt of that blame. I’m tired of manufacturers casually pointing the finger towards consumers for the sporty-car sales decline. ESPECIALLY when a lot of the ‘sporty’ cars being offered frankly aren’t that sporty, seductive, or energizing. Most of them are half-ass lob balls with $30,000+ price tags… in a world of better used-car options. Ford/Chevy’s got no problem selling new Mustangs/Camaros all day long. Civic Type-Rs are hunted & sold the day they hit dealer lots. So maybe the problem isn’t the consumer demand for sporty cars… it’s more-so the generic, compromised, diluted products being offered.
These manufacturers are not creating cars with real sport-DNA anymore. And if they are… then they’re not creating a LIFESTYLE around those emotions. And they’re not creating a mainstream passion for the product! Marketing is a huge part of it… it’s the stone that drops in the water & creates the ripple. You have to plant the seed & create the need!! Remember when Volkswagen made great commercials for the GTI? Nowadays we get “This is my fight song” played over & over to a Ford Edge. We get people driving Nissan Altimas… tricked into thinking they’re race cars because someone put aluminum foil on the dash, and I want to jump off a bridge.
These days – manufacturers pandering to consumer’s distracted disarray with gimmicky convenience features, rather than treating them like savvy buyers who know what they want in a product. Example – just look at those Chevy commercials where ‘real people’ act like they’ve never seen a damn car before.
And then we wonder why the sport of driving is endangered?! It’s because most of the general public doesn’t even know what that means anymore. They’re too far removed! It’s more than just a button on the console lol.
Manufacturers are marketing & celebrating features that remove drivers from the responsibility (and joy) of driving. Hence – laziness, chaos, & distraction is the new resulting automotive trend, and new car buyers just want rolling cell phone chargers that drive themselves to a punched-in destination. Manufacturers need to own up to at least some responsibility for these changing car-buying patterns, and the appliancing of modern-day vehicles. Because THAT’S where they’ve set the bar.
Imagine you’re the parent of a 5-year-old, and you offer your kid the choice between cake, cream-puffs, or a carrot at snack-time. You think they’re gonna take the carrot?! No man! Because you’ve set the expectations at ‘cream-puff’! And that’s what most people out there are driving today… total cream-puffs. The point is: It’d be refreshing if some of these manufacturers had a little more backbone, put a little more juice into what they created… and were a little less accommodating to lazy consumers. Take the damn cake off the table sometimes! I know it sounds off-key… but a lot of buyers out there might actually appreciate & respect it when you STAND FOR SOMETHING as a brand.