2011 Mazda
3 i Touring
vs. 2011 Nissan
Versa SL

2011 Mazda 3 i Touring

10.0

starting from

$19,745
"Energetic 2.5-liter engine."
edmunds.com | talking about the 3's engine
"A five-speed automatic is optional."
edmunds.com | talking about the 3's transmission

Reasons to buy the Mazda 3 i Touring

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Tighter turning radius
17.1 ft
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Safer for the driver in side collisions
5 stars
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Safer for the driver in head-on collisions
5 stars
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OK brakes
Disc
2011 Nissan Versa SL

9.2

Runner-up

Nissan Versa SL

starting from

$17,410

Reasons to buy the Nissan Versa SL

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Navigation system
Optional
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Lengthy braking distance from 60mph
137 ft
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Good ground clearance for rough terrain
6.3"
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CD changer
Standard
Crash Test Ratings 10.0 vs 6.8
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring Winner: 3 i Touring
[details]
  • The 3 i Touring has 4.6x less risk of serious injury, 5 stars vs 2 stars
  • The 3 i Touring has 3.9x less risk of serious injury, 5 stars vs 3 stars
Performance 10.0 vs 8.2
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring Winner: 3 i Touring
[details]
  • The 3 i Touring needs 2x less space to turn, 17.1 ft vs 34.2 ft
  • The 3 i Touring's Semi-automatic transmission offers the best driving experience, Semi-automatic transmission vs Automatic transmission
  • The 3 i Touring's power-to-weight ratio is more than 10% better, providing a sportier ride, 19.7 lb/hp vs 22.4 lb/hp
Entertainment System 10.0 vs 9.6
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring Winner: 3 i Touring
[details]
  • Like your tunes? In the 3 i Touring, you can upgrade to satellite radio
Practicality 9.8 vs 10.0
2011 Nissan Versa SL Winner: Versa SL
[details]
  • The Versa SL offers an optional navigation system; not available on the 3 i Touring
  • Room for around 20% more stuff, 13.8 ft3 vs 11.8 ft3
Cost 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Inexpensive
  • Shorter-lasting basic warranty
  • Shorter basic warranty
Safety Features 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Child door locks come standard
Luxury Features 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Neither offers a sun roof
  • Neither has a power seat option
  • Neither offers a leather interior
Road Tests - vs 10.0
Missing information
[details]
  • Both have pokey 1/4 mile times
  • Both have sluggish 0-60 times
  • Both have subpar cornering abilities
Overall 10.0 vs 9.2

Crash Test Ratings

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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Rollover resistance 4 stars vs 4 stars Poor protection, 10% to 20% chance of rolling over during emergency lane change
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Front driver crash test 5 stars vs 3 stars The better is 3.9x safer than the Versa SL
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Driver side crash test 5 stars vs 2 stars The better is 4.6x safer than the Versa SL

Performance

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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Horsepower 148 HP @ 6,500 RPM vs 122 HP @ 5,200 RPM Underpowered
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Number of gears 5 vs 4 The 3 i Touring has an OK number of gears, while the Versa SL has very few
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Transmission Semi-automatic transmission vs Automatic transmission The 3 i Touring's semi-automatic transmission is a rare find for this class of vehicle
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paddle shifters Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers paddle shifters
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Air compressor None vs None Neither has an air compressor to maximize power output
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Power-to-weight ratio 19.7 lb/hp vs 22.4 lb/hp Both 3 i Touring and Versa SL are sluggish relative to their competitors
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Drivetrain type front-wheel drive vs front-wheel drive Neither has a good drivetrain for off-road or bad weather driving
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Curb-to-curb turning radius 17.1 ft vs 34.2 ft The 3 i Touring turns on a dime, and the Versa SL is comparable to most other vehicles

Entertainment System

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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Number of speakers 6 vs 6 Fewer speakers
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Has speed sensitive volume Yes vs Yes Both have speed-sensitive volume
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CD player Standard vs Standard CD player comes standard
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premium radio Optional vs Not Available Like your tunes? In the 3 i Touring, you can upgrade to satellite radio
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Has auxiliary audio input Yes vs Yes Both have an audio-in jack so you can plug in your own MP3 player to the stereo
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Has subwoofer No vs No Neither has a subwoofer; audio won't have that deep thumping bass sound
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entertainment system Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers an entertainment system

Practicality

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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Passengers 5 vs 5 Average number of seats
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Highway driving range 479 miles vs 422 miles The 3 i Touring has OK highway range, but the Versa SL is very limited
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Cargo space 11.8 ft3 vs 13.8 ft3 Both have OK cargo room
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front seats 51.9 ft3 vs 52.0 ft3 Both average size front seats
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folding rear seats Standard vs Standard Both have a rear seat that folds down for extra storage space
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power outlets Standard vs Standard Both have power outlets
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roof rails Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers roof rails
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navigation system Not Available vs Optional The Versa SL offers an optional navigation system; not available on the 3 i Touring
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Cupholders 8 vs 5 Both have a good number of cupholders but the 3 i Touring is particularly good
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front air conditioning Standard vs Standard A/C for hot summer days comes standard

Cost

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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MSRP $19,745 vs $17,410 Inexpensive
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In-city gas mileage 24 mpg vs 24 mpg Both get OK mileage in the city
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basic warranty miles 36,000 mile vs 36,000 mile Shorter basic warranty
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basic warranty years 3 year vs 3 year Shorter-lasting basic warranty

Safety Features

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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antilock brakes Standard vs Standard Both come standard with ABS brakes
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Stability control system Yes vs Yes Both have electronic stability control
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Airbags 5 vs 5 OK number of airbags
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Rear brakes Disc vs Drum The 3 i Touring has good brakes for high-performance driving
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child door locks Standard vs Standard Child door locks come standard
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Roadside assistance system None vs None

Luxury Features

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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moon roof Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a sun roof
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power seats Not Available vs Not Available Neither has a power seat option
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keyless entry Standard vs Standard Both have keyless entry
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leather Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a leather interior

Road Tests

Mazda
3 i Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring
2011 Nissan Versa SL Nissan
Versa SL
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0-60 mph 9.4 seconds vs 10.3 seconds Both have sluggish 0-60 times
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Braking distance at 60mph 145 ft vs 137 ft Both take longer to stop from 60mph
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1/4 mile 17.2 s @ 83 mph vs 18.0 s @ 78 mph Both have pokey 1/4 mile times
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Lateral acceleration 0.81 g vs 0.75 g Both have subpar cornering abilities
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Top speed Unknown vs 113 mph

Other Vehicles to Consider

2011 Mazda 3 i Touring 2011 Mazda 2 Touring 3 i Touring vs 2 Touring
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring 2011 Toyota Prius Four 3 i Touring vs Prius Four
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring 2012 Mazda 5 Sport 3 i Touring vs 5 Sport
2011 Mazda 3 s Grand Touring 2011 BMW 328i 3 s Grand Touring vs 328i
2011 Mazda 3 i Touring 2012 Chevrolet Cruze LT 3 i Touring vs Cruze LT
2011 Nissan Versa SL 2011 Toyota Corolla Versa SL vs Corolla
2011 Nissan Versa SL 2012 Ford Focus Titanium Versa SL vs Focus Titanium
2011 Nissan Versa SL 2011 Honda Fit Versa SL vs Fit
2011 Nissan Versa SL 2011 Toyota Matrix Versa SL vs Matrix
2011 Nissan Versa SL 2011 Nissan Sentra Versa SL vs Sentra

Comments Which car would you recommend, and why?

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