A few days behind the wheel of the Mazda2 and it was easy to see why the vehicle was recently voted both South African Car of the Year and World Car of the Year 2008.
An attractive, funky design, a punchy little motor and a host of extras make the little Mazda2 one hot little hatch.
On test we had the 1,5 Individual and with barely 11000 kilometres on the clock the car still smelt and felt like it had just been driven out of the plant line in Silverton. It drove like a dream whether gunning it up the highway or scooting around town.
Though it is a hatch, visibility is unobstructed, and being a four-door, getting in and out of the back is hassle-free.
Boot size is reasonable and the back seats can fold down to give you extra space.
The 1,5 Individual comes with 16-inch alloy wheels, 6-CD changer, curtain and side airbags, rain sensitive wipers, along with a leather covered steering wheel and gear knob.
Another interesting feature is the "smart keyless entry with smart start". This means there is no key as we are used to.
The vehicle comes with a 4-year/60000 km service plan and service intervals are the standard 15000km.