Mazda2 an ideal

supermini

Mazda2 Venture, front, action
Mazda2 Venture, front
Mazda2 Venture, side
Mazda2 Venture Edition
Mazda2 Venture, side, action
Mazda2 Venture, rear
Mazda2 Venture, interior
Mazda2 Venture, boot

THE Mazda2 built between 2007 and 2015 introduced us to the company's belief that light weight is just as important as anything else in lowering emissions and raising economy.

That's something I learned back in the 1970s when I was modifying my own cars to go faster.

Those cars were lighter than our cars today because there was no central locking, electric windows, air-conditioning or airbags - but of course, neither were they anywhere near as safe.

This ‘2' also got new engines that gave better performance and efficiency and, together, all the changes make a small car that's not only fun to drive but ticks all the other boxes.

It's an ideal car for those thinking of downsizing because it has very easy, light controls, a good driving position and a shape that makes parking simple and quick. It also has a tight turning circle for those awkward spaces.

Mazda's reputation for reliability is better than almost any other car maker and the quality of build is very good indeed.

Petrol engines are 73bhp 1.3 and 100bhp 1.5, which is only available as an automatic. There is also a 1.4 diesel with 67bhp but it's painfully slow.

Comfort is good in most but Sport models have firmer suspension and it does make things worse.

That light weight means it has marvellous agility - better than almost any other supermini. Mazda is well known for its MX5 sportscar and this same thinking has been applied to the ‘2', giving it positive and direct steering and excellent road holding.

It doesn't compromise on passenger space either. Four adults are completely comfortable and the boot is big enough for most people's needs.

FAST FACTS

Price: Pay about £3,000 for an '09 09-reg TS, or £6,100 for a '13 13-reg SE

Mechanical: 73bhp, 1,349cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 5-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 104mph

0-62mph: 14 seconds

Combined MPG: 52

Insurance Group: 9

C02 emissions: 129g/km

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