2011 Mazda MAZDA6 vs. Its Competition

2010 Mazda MAZDA6 4-door Sedan Auto i Grand Touring Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

In this group of vehicles, the Mazda6 arguably has the freshest appearance.

But those looking only at the top-of-the-line V-6 Mazda6 's' Grand Touring should also consider the Nissan Maxima.

The Maxima has an aesthetically appealing package, with an especially well-sculpted exterior, but the driving experience is a bit disappointing with the CVT automatic—as it is with the Altima.

Mazda has a gem in its 3.7-liter V-6, which feels stronger than virtually any of its peers.

Overall, the Toyota Camry rides more softly.

It is the Buick of this group.

The Honda Accord and Nissan Altima are also quite fun to drive, but the Mazda feels the part, with a more cockpit-like interior.

The Hyundai Sonata and Kia Optima were completely redesigned for 2011; they're both somewhat larger than the models they replace and have much-improved powertrains and refinement.

The standard engines on both of these models get 35 mpg on the highway and make about 200 hp; of the two, the Optima steers and handles better, but it's not quite up to the agile feel of the Mazda6, overall.

2010 Mazda MAZDA6 4-door Sedan Auto i Grand Touring Angular Front Exterior View2011 Mazda MAZDA6Browse Used Listings2011 Honda Accord Sedan 4-door I4 Auto LX Angular Front Exterior View2011 Honda Accord SedanBrowse Used Listings2011 Hyundai Sonata 4-door Sedan I4 Auto Limited Angular Front Exterior View2011 Hyundai SonataBrowse Used Listings2011 Kia Optima2011 Kia OptimaBrowse Used Listings2011 Nissan Altima 4-door Sedan I4 eCVT Hybrid Angular Front Exterior View2011 Nissan AltimaBrowse Used Listings2011 Toyota Camry LE2011 Toyota CamryBrowse Used Listings
Quick Specs
8.2
The 2011 Mazda Mazda6 is a great pick for practically-minded family-car shoppers who also value driving enjoyment.
8.2
Though the 2011 Honda Accord is missing Bluetooth connectivity on the more affordable trims, it’s a very compelling package otherwise, with top-notch refinement, performance, and comfort.
8.6
The 2011 Hyundai Sonata takes some smart styling and performance risks to raise its profile.
8.6
Kia simply gets it; basic doesn't have to be boring, and the 2011 Kia Optima shows that mid-size sedan shoppers don't have to settle to design boredom or a lack of features.
7.6
The 2011 Nissan Altima isn't quite as roomy as some mid-size rivals, but it's one of the sportiest-driving choices.
6.8
The 2011 Toyota Camry isn’t at the leading edge in any way, but it remains one of the smartest mid-size sedan picks.
MSRP From     
$19,990$21,380$19,395$19,200$20,270$20,195
Gas Mileage     
18 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy20 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 39 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 39 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 33 MPG Hwy20 MPG City / 33 MPG Hwy
Engine     
Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4
EPA Class     
MidsizeLargeLarge CarsMidsize CarsMidsizeMid-Size
Style Name     
4-Door Sedan Manual i Sport4-Door I4 Manual LX4-Door Sedan 2.4L Manual GLS *Ltd Avail*4-Door Sedan 2.4L Manual LX4-Door Sedan I4 CVT 2.54-Door Sedan I4 Manual (Natl)
Drivetrain     
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
555555
Passenger Doors     
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style     
4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan
Transmission     
Manual w/ODManualManual w/ODManualContinuously VariableManual w/OD