Here’s Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra - story fullscreen Fullscreen

Here’s Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra

The Acura Integra is a great entry-level luxury car, but here’s where it falls short of the Mazda 3 Turbo

Japanese carmakers seem to be on a roll as many exciting models are coming out in 2022. Among them is the 2023 Acura Integra, which was highly anticipated by enthusiasts. While Acura claims to be a performance luxury brand, the new Integra was a bit of a letdown. That’s because everyone expected a two-door coupe with the Type-R engine instead of a re-bodied Honda Civic. With this in mind, another Japanese model is already present in the compact, luxury segment – the Mazda 3 – and here’s why it may be a better option.

The 2023 Acura Integra was a bit of a letdown

Here's Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra Exterior
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That’s not to say the 2023 Acura Integra is a bad car. It’s just that it didn’t quite live up to the hype. While hatchbacks have a much bigger market share than compact performance coupes, many expected the Integra to be more than just a re-bodied Civic. Meanwhile, the Mazda 3 has come a long way, since its first-generation, by evolving from a mass-produced economy car to an entry-level performance luxury car.

The Mazda 3 Turbo has superior performance

Here's Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra Exterior
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When it comes to performance, power output is an important aspect and as it stands, the Mazda 3 Turbo packs a lot more grunt than the Acura Integra. Yes, an Integra Type S is on the way and it will share an engine with the Civic Type R, but for now, we only have a 1.5-liter turbocharged inline-four with 200 horsepower and 192 pound-feet (260 Nm).

The Mazda 3 Turbo, meanwhile, packs a 2.5-liter Skyactiv G Turbo with 227 horsepower and 310 pound-feet (420 Nm). Put in 93-octane and it jumps to 250 horsepower and 320 pound-feet (434 Nm). The only downside is that the 2.5-liter engine comes exclusively with a six-speed automatic. The 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) takes 6.3 seconds, which is over 0.5 seconds quicker than the 1.5-liter Acura Integra.

All-wheel drive as standard

Here's Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra Exterior
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The specs for the 2023 Acura Integra were recently revealed. While the brand has its awesome SH-AWD system, and rumors claimed AWD will be offered, it is not available for any trim of the Acura Integra. All trim levels send power to the front wheels only. Things are different with the Mazda 3 Turbo as all versions with the 2.5-liter engine get Mazda’s i-ACTIV all-wheel-drive system as standard.

More body style options

Here's Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra Exterior
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Many expected the 2023 Acura Integra to arrive in two body styles - a two-door coupe and a five-door hatchback. While we got the latter, it doesn’t look like there will be other body styles available. Things are quite different with the Mazda 3, which comes in hatchback and sedan body styles. Granted, the hatchback is on the smaller side when compared to the Integra, but the sedan is practical enough to be a viable alternative.

Better value for money?

Here's Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra Exterior
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When it comes to brand new cars, pricing is, often, the decisive factor. The Mazda 3 Turbo starts at $32,045 and we know the 2023 Acura Integra starts at around $30,000, which makes it slightly more affordable. That said, if performance is higher on your priority list, the Mazda 3 Turbo is the better option.

Conclusion

Here's Why The Mazda 3 Turbo May Be a Better Alternative To The 2023 Acura Integra Exterior
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We are, in no way, saying that the 2023 Acura Integra is a bad car. It sits on the very capable and versatile Civic Si platform and the 1.5-liter engine is efficient while providing adequate performance. Both, the Mazda 3 Turbo and Acura Integra are a walking paradox, but for different reasons. The Mazda 3 does not boast a legendary name, nor its performance credentials, although the package is almost perfect.

The Integra, meanwhile, had some pretty big shoes to fill, which, at this point, it fails to do. With that being said, it’s still shaping up to be a great, overall package, which will only be improved upon when the Type S eventually comes out. The fact we had so little to say in favor of the Mazda 3 Turbo, is proof enough that the Integra may still enjoy great sales.

Dim Angelov
Dim Angelov
Born in 1992, I come from a family of motoring enthusiasts. My passion for cars was awoken at the age of six, when I saw a Lamborghini Diablo SV in a magazine. After high school I earned a master’s degree in marketing and a Master of Arts in Media and Communications. Over the years, I’ve practiced and become skilled in precision driving and to date have test driven more than 250 cars across the globe. Over the years, I’ve picked up basic mechanical knowledge and have even taken part in the restoration of a 1964 Jaguar E-Type and an Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint. Lately, I’ve taken a fancy to automotive photography, and while modern cars are my primary passion, I also have a love for Asian Martial Arts, swimming, war history, craft beer, historical weapons, and car restoration. In time, I plan my own classic car restoration and hope to earn my racing certificate, after which I expect to establish my own racing team.  Read full bio
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