What's the used Mazda 6 saloon like?
It would be fair to say the 2007-2012 Mazda 6 always lived in the shadow of the iconic Ford Mondeo. It did, after all, use the same underpinnings as the Mondeo for two generations, and it was the Ford that seemed to dominate the non-premium executive car market in those years.
However, those days are long gone. The Mondeo is no more, and nor is the Mazda 6. But it's worth remembering that Mazda enjoyed great success with this third 2013-2022 incarnation. It was all Mazda's own work and the firm managed to create a very good all-rounder that now makes a really good used purchase.
On the road, the 148bhp 2.2-litre diesel pulls strongly once you get it up to around 2000rpm, giving you plenty of oomph in the mid-range to make good progress in a relaxed fashion. It’s happy to rev freely and it’s smooth, too, without the usual clatter you associate with diesel engines.
The more powerful version of this engine has 173bhp, but produces more boom in the process and this is combined with higher CO2 emissions. The 2.0-litre petrol engine also comes in two states of tune but, with less shove than the diesels, it needs to be worked harder to make progress.
Ultimately, the 6 is a pleasant and fun car to drive, with light but predictable steering, but push it hard and the front wheels start to run wide before rivals such as the Ford Mondeo and Skoda Superb in tight bends.
The ride can get a bit choppy over scraggy town roads, especially with the larger wheel options – something we’d recommend avoiding – but it settles down at motorway speeds. This helps to make the 6 a decent cruiser with little road noise to disturb your peace, but you do have to put up with a flutter of wind noise from the door mirrors.
There were improvements made to the interior over the years, too, which feels more upmarket than that of rivals such as the Mondeo and Vauxhall Insignia. While there are still some cheap and flimsy plastics around the centre console, most of the dashboard is finished in high-quality materials and all the major buttons and controls have a nicely damped action to them.