Mazda2 1.5 TS2 Auto Review Hands-On

Andrew Unsworth
28 Nov 2013

light, snappy steering and nippy acceleration makes the Mazda2 1.5 TS2 Auto a good town car


It may not be as common a sight on British roads as the Ford Fiesta or Fiat 500, but the Mazda2 is a supermini with a lot to offer those in need of a compact car, thanks to features such as five doors, split rear seats to accommodate large items, a low insurance grouping, and a fairly low staring price of £10,995.

Mazda2 1.5 TS2 Auto Front Three Quarters

The model we drove was the Mazda2 1.5 TS2 Auto, which has a 1.5-litre naturally aspirated engine developing 102ps at 6,000rpm and a four-speed automatic gearbox.

Physically, it lacks the quirkiness of cars such as the Fiat 500 and the bubbly elegance of the Alfa MiTo, but its minimalist cabin design isn't unpleasant. Controls are within easy reach, and the fact there are few of them means you'll have no trouble finding the control you want to adjust.

Mazda2 Dashboard

The most interesting feature of the cockpit is the audio system, which is well integrated and adds character to the Mazda 2's otherwise drab dashboard. The sound of the audio system isn't bad for a standard supermini, but we did find the mid-range and top-end too harsh for our liking.

Mazda2 1.5 TS2 Auto Audio Inputs

Audio lovers will be pleased with the USB port and 3.5mm auxiliary inputs, as they let you listen to tunes stored on your smartphone through the car’s audio system. The USB port will also charge your audio device at the same time.

An extra boon for audio fans are the steering wheel-mounted audio controls, which mean you’ll have no problem adjusting volume, changing tracks, muting sound and changing the audio source. Sadly, there's no Bluetooth for hands-free phone use, and you can't add it as an option.

Mazda2 1.5 TS2 Auto Instrument Panel

The trip computer is basic, but it shows you useful information such as average fuel consumption, current consumption and remaining range among others. The Mazda 1.5 TS2 Auto also comes with all the essential controls you need to make journeys enjoyable, such as electric front windows and electric wing mirror controls. Rear passengers must make-do with wind-down windows, though.

You don't expect much storage space in a supermini, but you do at least get a tray in the centre console in which you can place your phone or glasses case. We’d prefer more than one cupholder, but one is better than none.

Mazda2 Boot Shot

As for luggage space, the Mazda2 provides 250 litres of space with the rear seats upright and 469 litres with the rear seats down. The 250-litre capacity means you shouldn’t have a problem loading the boot with your weekly shopping or luggage for short breaks, but this understandably isn’t the best car to use when ferrying a large family plus suitcases to the airport.

There are three seats in the back, but it'd be a real squeeze to get three adults sitting there comfortably. Rear passenger comfort is obviously dependent on the height of the rear passengers and those in front. However, we think most adult rear passengers should find short journeys tolerable; longer journeys may prove a challenge. As for the front seats, taller drivers may have trouble with the leg space provided by the Mazda2, but at least there's plenty of headroom.

On the road, the Mazda2 distinguished itself as a capable supermini. Its sharp, light steering made parking and weaving our way through town centres a breeze. Acceleration is nippy up to around 45mph, after which it tails off quickly. The car can drive at motorway speeds okay, and although motorway overtaking was slower than we’d like it was quick enough to feel safe.

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