2014 Mazda 6 SkyActiv 2.5

2014 Mazda 6 SkyActiv 2.5

The Good:
– Class-competitive engine
– Class-leading handling
– Class-beating cabin materials
The Bad:
– A bit on the noisy side
– Somewhat shallow boot
– Staid cabin design

The Mazda 6 is renowned the world over for its excellent handling, which is impressive considering it’s simply a midsize sedan that competes in the mainstream segment alongside Toyota and Honda. But we hadn’t driven this Mazda ever before, so we couldn’t verify the hype. Now the local dealer finally has a media test-drive program in place, and we could finally see for ourselves whether the all-new 2014 iteration of the Mazda 6 is worthy of all that international attention.

The exterior looks superbly upscale. Mazda has managed to out-do Hyundai in building a well-resolved swoopy-styled midsize sedan. The 19-inch wheels and dual exhaust tips, as found on our top-spec model, are a must though, to keep up the “premium” charade.

2014 Mazda 6 7

In stark contrast to the outer skin, the interior is very staid and unremarkable, but that’s only in the looks. There’s abundant soft-touch materials on the dash and all the door sills, as well as padded leatherette door inserts that match the nice-looking leather seats. There’s no sneaky cost-cutting like what Toyota or Ford does with their low-rent rear compartments, and all hard plastics are banished to below-the-waist areas.

The Mazda 6 offers good cabin space, with decently-bolstered front seats and a nicely-shaped rear bench with three headrests. However, rear headroom and legroom are a bit less than, say, the Toyota Camry. The boot under that gooseneck-hinged lid is very long, but surprisingly shallow. At least there are several useful storage cubbies, with four covered cup-holders, seatback pockets, and bottle-holders in the doors.

Our Japanese-built car came loaded with tech, starting with a small touchscreen that’s easy to use thanks to shortcut buttons on the sides. A second rotary-knob controller near the shifter does the same thing in our early test car, but it’s not actually offered in GCC-spec models. The screen holds functionality for the decent CD/MP3 stereo with USB/AUX ports, navigation, rear parking camera with guiding lines, and Bluetooth phone as well as streaming audio. Our test car also had front and side-curtain airbags, blind-spot monitor, annoying start-stop fuel-saving tech, small sunroof, HID headlights, radar cruise control and more. Unfortunately, the dual-zone auto a/c, which had rear vents, could barely cope with the 50-degree July heat, possibly because of the aforementioned non-GCC specification.

2014 Mazda 6 4

Powered by Mazda’s newfangled “SkyActiv” 2.5-litre 4-cylinder engine, the car’s good for 184 hp at 5700 rpm and 251 Nm of torque at 3250 rpm. We still don’t find the direct-injection high-compression tech particularly advantageous though, since we managed a 0-100 kph time of 9.1 seconds and fuel consumption of 9.9 litres/100 km, not a whole lot different from a 2.4-litre Honda Accord with its aging powertrain. Our test car even came with the optional “i-ELOOP” electricity regeneration tech that’s designed to drive electrical components and save fuel, although we don’t think it’ll be offered here. Still, with a standard manually-shiftable 6-speed automatic offering nicely-spaced ratios, the Mazda 6 feels very spritely in city-driving and on highway-overtaking, so it has more juice where it counts.

The spritely drive extends to the handling as well. The suspension tuning is just remarkable for a car that uses no electronic trickery, limiting body roll to the bare minimum and facilitating quick direction changes with the directness of a large BMW. There’s still some understeer when the 225/45 tyres run out of grip at the limit, but a lot of it can be avoided by just flicking the car one way and then the other, making the rear rotate a bit like a rear-biased sports sedan, yet remaining completely safe and under control. There’s even a proper handbrake, should you wish to experiment further with the rear-end.

Mazda doesn’t go the full monty with the “sports-sedan” bit though. The mildly-weighted steering offers limited feedback, and the light-pedalled brakes are merely average. It seems Mazda is attempting to cater to the casual commuter crowd with these compromises.

We cannot blame Mazda for that, considering how harsh the ride was on the old top-spec model, according to one of our editors who owned one. This new one rides very well, a little bit on the firm side, but still largely smooth on most surfaces. It bounces noticeably less over bumps than even the class-leading Honda Accord, and yet it smoothens out those road imperfections just the same. Unfortunately, Mazda is somewhat compromised here as well, as the car exhibits higher-than-average road and wind noise, maybe even a little more than the already-noisy Honda Accord. A bit more sound-deadening would’ve made it the class-leader in our book.

The new Mazda 6 is a flawed-yet-brilliant car for its class. Mazda owners are usually total fanboys, and with good reason. This car was inches away from becoming the best midsize sedan ever built in this generally-boring segment, but some oversights keep it from becoming one. Those who value its driving feel will more-than-likely be willing to overlook its faults, and we wouldn’t argue against that. The 6 has no proper rivals to speak of when it comes to driving satisfaction, except maybe for the upcoming Ford Fusion. That’s no surprise, considering they were blood-brothers in the recent past.

Price Range:
Dh 83,000-110,000

Current Model Introduced in:

Body Styles:
4-door sedan

2.5L 185 hp Inline-4 / 251 Nm

6-speed automatic


Front: independent
Rear: independent

Front: discs
Rear: discs

Curb Weight:
1506 kg

4850 mm

2830 mm

Top Speed:
220 kph

Test Acceleration 0-100 kph:
9.1 sec.

Observed Test Fuel Economy:
9.9 litres/100km

What do you think?



  1. Author

    Prices fixed. Thanks for pointing out, all.

  2. No V6 entering the market?

  3. The knob controller isn’t available on the offered high trim in Qatar. While the exterior and interior design looks real sharp, I find that the material quality is quite strange. Nice looking stitching but not that good up close. Nice looking soft material but feels like rubber.

    Space is quite tight but the starting price beats anything else with the entry level 2.0.

  4. Not sure what did you expect performance wise in that weather, the engine will lose about %10 of its power in that temperature/humidity level according to SAE specs/protocol.

    If it did 9.1s @ 45C then it’ll do 8.0-8.5s @ 20C-25C which is a nice number for an I4 midsize sedan.

  5. And your point is? At the end of the day, owners here will still get 9.1 seconds. Can’t give a damn about theoretical figures.

    • Average temps in Dubai throughout the year is 28C.
      So no, owners will get a time faster than 9.1s for a 0-100KPH run.
      Point is, its one of the quickest I4 sedans, the Altima will probably be a bit faster but still the 6 is quicker than the Accord, Camry, Sonata, and American I4 sedans.

    • Dubai has average temperature of 28 degrees? It barely hits that in the 3 months of winter we have here. And don’t quote weather reports. Official temps are measured in the shade.

  6. Mash, i guess the 9.1 sec to 100 was because you tested on a hot summer day , i bet you can clock 8-8.5 during winters which is proven in a number of reviews in the west.

    By the way , i own a top spec soul red and the rotary knob and i-ELOOP is not offered in GCC ,but who cares about the tech gimmicks when a car drives and looks as good as the 6. It feels light , agile and sharp .. thanks to a much lighter but stiffer chassis.

  7. Which a/c works at 55 C…

  8. one compelling car in class and above all it’s made in Japan ! not many cars left in this day and age in this class

  9. I had mazda 3 for 5 years and I wanted to get a bigger car, a midsize car, and to go for a different brand for a change; hence my first option was Accord then Altima, but when i saw the new style of Mazda 6 and had some research on the net, I finally placed the order for the GT and I got it. I admit Accord and Altima both established their reputation but you will find them almost everywhere; while I was looking for a “unique car” within my limited budget. The new Mazda 6 GT is a nice car, compromised between style, price, consumption and power. But hey if you want an exceptional car you need to double your budget:)

  10. For drive arabia just want to inform you that the car you test it was the model dedicated for the Russian market that’s why the a/c was not cooling well, that car was for the opening show in szr showroom and it was removed after and sent to the service centre coz it was facing a heat problems that’s why it was not fast as the one tested in usa and other countries reach 6.7 from 0 to 100km and you can check it in All car websites.

  11. I respect your opinion but the review was not fair especially when it comes to the options, this car that you test got more options than camry and accord and believe me if they release the same options for GCC countries it will destroy camry and accord coz non of them got even 1/4 the options in this car but still the GCC model (top option) got more options than these cars and it’s more sporty coz I test them all and I’m very confident that this is the best JAPANIES car in UAE.

  12. I agree with Steve.
    By the way it is hard to find the new Mazda 6 GT since international demand exceeded the supply.
    The car was initially priced at 105K then they increased it to 110K.
    But I am glad that the clients here still go for Honda, Nissan and Toyota which leaves Mazda more unique. For example in my own building there is 4 Altima, and 3 Accord…
    P.S: The AC is cooling well in my new Mazda 6 even when I drove recently at temperatures around 50 degrees

  13. Mazda 6 2014 GT

  14. hello Mashfique Hussain Chowdhury.. while setting the cruise control, does the set speed show up? which shows speed u want to set like 120 on the digital imid?

  15. @mash

    you sure about the AC issue?.. Mazda’s have generally decent ACs..

    Performance 9 sec is about right with AC on and in high heat conditions….

    but you are correct about the road noise issue.

  16. Hi, please check steve’s comment above which should clear the A/C issue, Mash yet to confirm!

  17. Author

    I can only report on what I drove. You’ll notice in the review that our test car had features which aren’t even offered to the public, so it probably isn’t even a GCC-spec car.

  18. either this way this car is a winner..

    110k v 105 for a full opt. camry…

    cant believe people here are so silly they still buy a camry becos of the “resale” as the main factor…

  19. I have personally seen de car but would like to highlight here in UAE I haven’t seen de knob controller which is such a disappointment. Any reason why

  20. Guys, every machine has its plus and minus. New Mazda 6 is quite an attractive machine with some flaws too. But in the end, all depends on the driver who drives it.
    There has to be a good chemistry between the man and his machine to experience pure pleasure & comfort while driving…
    I own a 2010 Mazda 6 – 2.5L full options car and believe me, its always been a pleasure behind the wheel. I have drove Camry, Accord & Altima. But for some points, I will always prefer a Mazda..!!

  21. Gents,
    Do you know the pollution level for Mazda 6 exported in Middle East? For instance EURO 5 is the pollution level for the cars exported in Europe. If you want to export it in EU countries the pollution level EURO? has to be stated.

  22. i need ur precious comments abt mazda 6 ,2013 model in saudi arabia. any special drawbacks on long routes n drive within city as well? ur opinion z appreciated . thanx

  23. How about the reliability of mazda 6? Also whats the spare parts like? Expensive or normal? My fear is that after 3-4 years the car will start to have issues, that will be expensive to fix… Comments?


  24. i owned Mazda6 2014 model. its a good car but only one bad thing is you can hear air cutting sound in the driver side, its very high noice.if anybody have the same issue please let me know.

    • what do you mean by air cutting sounds? is it the air noise from the side mirrors when traveling at high speeds? plz share your experience in details, thnks

  25. What is Saudi price for fully equipped Mazda 6?

    • In Saudi Its Costs SR: 67,000/- for standard and SR: 98,000/- for Full option (Only Two options available all the time)

  26. I own a 2014 Mazda6, 2.5ltr “comfort” model @Nouphal, If you are talking about wind noise while cruising, then yes that is very much audible at speeds above 110kph, other than that there no other issue with my car. It is very comfortable nd power is available at any speed while overtaking also.
    Highly recommended to anyone looking to buy a mid size sedan, rather than cars having sleepy cvts

  27. Was looking at various reviews on the mazda 6 2014 since I am mulling on getting one and came across this review, firstly the english is appalling and I don’t consider this a review if you have not tested the model introduced by the company for the specific market. I incidently drive the 2010 model and it’s a beautiful machine, esp. the tiptonic autobox, its a joy to use in the manual mode.

  28. Hi guys! im planning on buying this car. Seems awesome really, but I was a little worried about the cost of parts and repairs in the future. Any advice ? my next option is a Mitsu Lancer EX.


  29. Hi, i am also planning to buy mazda 6, the only one question which comes in my mind is about the future maintanance cost of Mazda. Can anyone give me ur valuble comment on this.

    • Dear Siz,

      Go for it , the maintenance cost of Mazda is a bit high if you count it as money, but as a value and life cycle, it is 3 times better than any car in its category , lets say you`ll pay 500AED for the brake pads comparing to another brand which will cost you 300AED, the mazda`s brake pads will last for 60,000KM and the other brand won’t even get you near 30,000KM. At least it is the only car which offers MADE IN JAPAN spare parts.

      I would advice you to get a service contract to avoid the headech for the 1st 100,000KM.

      PS:I owend the Mazda 6 2.3L 2005 for 5 years.

  30. If you buy a new car, unless it is a car with well known issues, maintenance costs 5 years down the line should not be a factor now.

  31. Hello Drive Arabia Online Team,

    So blessed to have such honest & sincere comments on Mazda 6 2014/2015, can you please let me know if its a good option to get this car as compared to other mid sized Sedans?

    How about the maintenance? What are the best ways to keep your car running smoothly without any disturbance and proper protection?

    Will appreciate your comments and positive inputs on the subject..

    Thanking You All,

  32. Mash, you said if it was less noisy it would he a class leader. How is that possible if the a/c does not cope well in our climate? (Everyone here wants a car with good a/c)

  33. Hello Guys,
    Bought a Mazda6-2.0L full options model, last month in Qatar. Cost me QR.81000 with 5 years unlimited Mazda Warranty + 5 years AAA road-side assistance + 20,000kms / 1 Year all free services.

    Believe me, it is actually a head turner with sharp & bold looks and those distinctive character lines.
    Pick-up is smooth with very less engine noise (as driving below 90 kms). So far gone 260 kms.
    The steering has a feel with grip and is quite responsive. Interior’s look, feel & space is far better than Camry/Optima/Sonata.
    As far as interior quality is concerned, t gives good competition to some good models of BMW/Audi/Mercedes/VW cars.

    I am not aware what Mazda-UAE offers as complete car package, but in Qatar, I feel that I have chosen a better machine than Toyota/Nissan/Kia/Hyundai, yet with competitive market price.
    Will update more in coming months..

    • Balraj,

      Are all the colors available ?/


    • Well, in Qatar, 4 colors are available so far. You can check if dealer has all the colors by calling or visiting National Car Co – Mazda showroom situated next to Doha Clinic-Hospital, near to Jarir Book Store.

  34. Hi Guys,
    For those who are still interested, I bought the car “Mazda 6” back in Feb. the 2.5 engine.
    The Car in general is just GREAT… I can tell you the handling is Awesome the AC is very efficient (used in Dubai June & July weather) also the seating, technology, stylish …etc.
    My only notes would be the road noise but for me it’s not that bad, shallow boot, the cabin is not innovative but still got the sporty mode. I also feel the suspension is a bit harsh on street bumps maybe because of the sport wheels. After all compared to rivals I think this one is better while it makes you differentiated and driving in style.
    Safe drive to all,

  35. Hi,

    I need some advise which one do i go for Accord or Maxima or Mazda 6 ?

    Maxima is 6 cyclinder car and i am a bit scared about the maintenance and the fuel economy , Mazda 6 i really liked but the interior is not that great .Accord is like the default one though i was never a fan.

    PS i am a new driver

  36. I own a 2014 Mazda 6 since Feb. I have driven 12000 Kms. I must say that Im very happy with the car for multiple reasons. First and foremost is you always get a second look from anyone who looks at this car. Handling is superb with good steering feel. Fuel economy is good for a 2.5 L engine.

    Above all..you are driving a car which is not very common on the roads and best in class. Highly recommended.

  37. Hi, could anyone please confirm about the availability of cruise control in the standard model of Mazda 6? (in Saudi Arabia)

  38. Hi Guys!!!

    Read all the comments and I also gonna buy a Mazda 2.0L version, but here in UAE the mentioned price for 2.0L model is wrong in the website. I checked with the local agent of Mazda here in UAE who is Galadari Automobiles LLC it is starting from AED 78,000 to AED 89,000.


  39. Hello Guys,

    Could you please advise what do you recommend 2.0L or 2.5L for Mazda 6?. Is 2.0L enough for such car size?
    and what about resale value is it reliable?


  40. The top range comes with leather seats that are (HEATED!! Only) and this is an order mistake. No Coolers in the Leather Seats.

  41. Bought 2.5 top model in May 2014. Very good car. But miss the parking sensors ff and rr. Should be offered as factory fitted.

  42. My car is exactly a year old now and has done 30000 kms. All these months my admiration towards this car has only grown more N more. I really enjoy driving this car. The best part is it gives you that fun element in driving especially with the paddle shifters if you need an immediate power thrust. It’s also fun using the manual option available on this car. Maintenance has been just the regular oil change and no mechanical faults.
    I would continue to recommend this car to anyone looking to buy a midsize sedan. Above all, it’s still the best looking sedan in the market even now!!!

    • Hi Vijeth,

      Could you please tell me how much it cost for a single maintenance. Also how about the road noise? Part of my job will be travelling .So isit good for a long drive.

  43. I would recommend a 2.5 litre engine over the 2 litre because the fuel economy is excellent. I make around 700 kms on a full tank of 62 litres. I get more or else the same economy on my other car which is a 1.8 litre honda civic.

  44. thanks .. how is road noise? is it bearable on a day to day basis?

  45. how much it will cost for a full option Mazda 6 SkyActiv 2.5

  46. Dear all can u guys please tell me about the road noise or wind noise issue if it is bearable not that much so I will be going to purchase it as I am confused or should I go for the new one coming in 3 months approx. Please I need reviews from u guys for the 2.5 skyactiv.


  47. it is still noisy… wait for the new camry it is supposed to super quiet

  48. I have recently picked a 2015 Mazda 6 Full Options, and I have driven every Mid Size saloon in UAE and by comparing every other model, This beats the shit out every other car whether in features and styling, costs. I was offered a 60000km free service and 5 year warranty. The top range comes with Radar control,I do hope they could offer the Iloop Technology on the brake energy regeneration. And costing much less that the top end so called other bland Japanese / European cars. You will not regret it. The test ride I had taken the day time temp was 42 Degrees, and this was parked in the hot sun, After I switched on the AC and it took less than 3 minutes to cool down to 16. The 2015 model has done a lot on the Cabin Noise, and have done a lot on the hush kits installed within the floor and the body allround. It was absoulted quite. My kids fall asleep. Hand down one of the best saloon I have ever owned.

  49. I went for the 2016 Mazda 6- standard model here in Saudi arabia. I have to say hands down, it’s the best midsize sedan in its class in terms of looks, performance & reliability. In the standard model you get a 2.5L engine with added features for this year that includes cruise control, electronic parking brake ,sport mode, etc… All that for 70,000 Riyals

  50. Guys, My Mazda6 2.0L Full options machine is now 14 months old. Only drove 9K as I am using my office SUV more.
    So far, Mazda is doing great !! Leaping ahead of Camry, Altima & Accord many times when it comes to kick-off at green signal and over-taking. Handling is just awesome, every time. I just did 10K service which was actually included in my buying price.
    I don’t know and bother about what other manufacturers say but for me Mazda : Made in Japan is way better than Toyota/Nissan/Honda (NOT made in Japan)..

  51. I own a 2009 2.0 Mazda 6 and is pretty much love the way the car handles. At times feel the road noise and the bumpy ridse but the sporty driving feel just overrides all concerns.

    Maintenance for the past 6 years has been average with no major mechanical faults/repairs.For me its is the best midsize sedan in its class

  52. hi guys..

    all the comments on top is great, i m planing to buy Mazda 6 2015 2.5, but after i read all your comments i did not get a good answer for the question on my mind, in between altima, camry and mazda, which on the good advice for hard working and driving long roads daily, i want something comfortable and relay able so what is your advice, and please if you give your advice just tell me why this choice?

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