The 2019 Mazda 6 doesn’t make a bad step.
This year, the mid-size sedan returns mostly unchanged from last year’s version, albeit with standard safety hardware that was optional last year.
We give the sedan a 6.3 that belies our feelings about it: full safety information isn’t yet in that could raise its score, and base models skip smartphone compatibility that we’d consider essential. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
Review continues below
The 2019 6 is available in five trim levels: Sport, Touring, Grand Touring, Grand Touring Reserve, and Signature.
The 2019 Mazda 6 isn’t just a standout among sedans, it’s also a standout in the parking lot against everything else. The exterior shapes are remarkable, flowing, and so far, unrivaled. The interior couldn’t live up to the sheet metal, but it performs admirably.
Under the hoods of most Mazda 6 sedans is a 2.5-liter inline-4 that makes 187 horsepower and is hooked to a 6-speed automatic—the 6-speed manual transmission hit the bricks this year.
A 250-hp turbo-4 is optional and helps the Mazda 6 live up to its performance potential, but those versions crest $30,000. The EPA rates the most common engine at 29 mpg combined.
We’re content wriggling around with the superb handling in the 6 that’s standard on every model.
Four adults will fit just fine, but the Mazda 6’s age relative to its competitors shows inside. The standard 8.0-inch touchscreen is bolted on to the dash and competitors from Honda and Nissan have more comfortable seats. The trunk of the 6 is on the small side, but 60/40-split folding rear seats help.
This year, every Mazda 6 gets standard automatic emergency braking, active lane control, blind-spot monitors, and adaptive cruise control. The feds gave it a five-star score and the IIHS has said good things about prior years.
Base models cost $24,720 and include 17-inch wheels, cloth upholstery, power features, Bluetooth connectivity, two USB inputs, dual-zone climate control, and an 8.0-inch touchscreen for infotainment. What’s missing? Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility that would rescue us from Mazda’s frustrating infotainment software. Step up to the Touring trim level and the smartphones systems take over and rescue us from distraction.