The Kia K5 and Mazda3 are two exciting cars in different classes. The K5 is a mid-sized sedan and the Mazda3 is a compact that is available as a sedan or hatchback. A few things that both cars have in common are comfortable interiors, modern technical features and captivating performance of the sporty turbo models.
While these cars compete in different segments, you may find yourself crossing the K5 and Mazda3, so let’s take a closer look and find the right car for you.
2022 Kia K5
The Kia K5 has replaced the Optima as the Korean brand’s mid-sized sedan. It has sharp, sporty styling that doesn’t quite look like anything else on the road. This mid-sized sedan is good value for money with excellent standard technical features. Prices start at $23,790 and top out at about $36,000.
The standard engine is a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder that produces 180 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. It delivers up to 29 city/38 highway mpg with front-wheel drive (FWD) and 25 city/33 highway mpg with four-wheel drive (AWD).
The K5 GT is powered by a larger 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 290 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque. It only comes with FWD and delivers up to 24 mpg city/32 highway. Every K5 uses an 8-speed automatic transmission.
Kia K5 Highlights
fuel efficient — Despite being a larger car, the K5 has better fuel economy than the Mazda3. The K5 is great on gas for a mid-sized sedan. Both available turbocharged engines offer a satisfactory balance between performance and fuel economy. Even the muscular GT model gets up to 32 mpg on the highway.
Many standard features Even the basic LX trim of the Kia K5 is well equipped with standard features at an affordable price. On top of the standard turbo engine, you get LED headlights, automatic climate control and an 8-inch infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The standard safety features of the Kia Drive Wise include automatic emergency braking, lane assist, high beam assist, etc.
Comfortable driving — The K5 has comfortable seats and a smooth ride, making it feel like a premium car. The front seats are comfortable all day and the suspension provides a smooth ride in town and on the highway. The K5 is up against some strong competitors in mid-sized sedans, but the Kia is one of the most comfortable cars in its class.
The Mazda3 is a sporty and luxurious choice in compact cars. Available as a sedan or hatchback, the Mazda3 stands out for its driving pleasure and first-class interior. Prices start at $21,150 and a fully loaded model goes up to about $35,000.
The base engine in the Mazda3 is a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder, but most models come with a more robust 2.5-liter engine that produces 186 horsepower and 186 lb-ft of torque. With front-wheel drive (FWD) it gets up to 26 city/35 highway mpg, with all-wheel drive (AWD) cutting numbers down a bit to 25 city/33 highway mpg. The bold 2.5-liter turbocharged engine has 250 horsepower and 320 lb-ft of torque. All turbo Mazda3 models have AWD, which comes down to 23 mpg in the city/32 on the highway.
agile manners — The Mazda3 is one of the most athletic options in its class. It has a small footprint and an agile handling that makes it a pleasure to drive, regardless of the three engine options you choose. It’s especially fun with the turbocharged engine that delivers 250 horsepower. The Mazda3 hatchback model is also available with a manual transmission, while the K5 is only automatic.
First-class interior — The Mazda3 is a little pricey compared to most of its competitors, but it also has one of the chicest interiors in its class. The interior is pleasant, the seats are comfortable and the materials are excellent. This Mazda is a fantastic budget-friendly alternative to a small car from a luxury brand.
Two body styles — The K5 is only available as a sedan, but you can get the Mazda3 as a sedan or hatchback. This is only part of the great variety in the Mazda3 model range. In addition to the two body styles, it has three engine options, two transmission options, and you can choose FWD or AWD.
Which of these cars is right for you depends on your needs and priorities. If you need the extra space of a mid-sized car, the bigger and more fuel-efficient Kia K5 is a better fit. If you like a sporty compact with a premium interior, you will probably prefer the Mazda3.