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Zoom-Zoom is alive and well at your Mazda dealer. The new Mazda6 proves that. As a winner in the family car wars (between $22,000 and $30,000) in the Automobile Journalist's Association of Canada (AJAC) Canadian Car of the year testing, the second-generation Mazda6 is now a finalist in the Canadian Car of the Year Awards.
If a car can survive the worst of Canadian winters, then it is a worthy candidate, and at -42, the Mazda6 never missed a beat. The other thing you need to know is that during our coldest weather, there wasn't a place to plug the Mazda6 in. The car started every time, although I did have to let it warm up a bit before moving. Electronics, particularly LCD displays do not work well at such extreme temperatures. It took about five minutes to get all the displays up and running.
Instrumentation and controls
Getting used to the displays themselves also took a bit of getting used to. On the center stack, at the top, there is an eyebrow-like ledge that has the climate control settings display. This display was accurate and highly visible, but not where I expected, so it took a couple of days to remember to look at the top of the dash when I reset the heater controls at the bottom of the dash.
My only complaint about the Mazda6 is that I had trouble working the HVAC controls with my woolly gloves on. If I wore regular dress gloves, it was much easier. On top of that, I found it difficult to make adjustments to the air distribution while on the move. Part of that is not being familiar with the controls and part is due to size and location. Once the system was set, the car warmed up evenly and kept a uniform temperature inside.
Crabbing about minor things like the HVAC controls doesn't change the fact that, while the Mazda6 was at our house, it was the favourite drive. In fact, when Mazda left it for an extra week, I had the opportunity to haul four adults around for about 500 km, and the only complaint was that I didn't stop often enough for breaks.
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