I replaced my trusty Honda Civic Type R, for the Mazda 3 MPS. After doing my research, I decided the MPS was the perfect car for me. It's under-stated (although some people hate that), and has bags of torque.
When comparing the performance to the Civic (and my old Clio 182), there is no comparison. The MPS is much quicker in every gear, would honestly leave the Type R standing. Being a previous Type R owner myself, I've not always seen the need for turbo charging. But after driving the MPS, it really does make a huge difference.
Handling wise, the car seems fairly sound. It does suffer the "dull" steering feel, which interestingly my Type R also had. But with an LSD doing all the work, it never struggles for grip.
Performance wise, the MPS will keep up with most cars (excluding the obvious exotic machines). Comparing against my mates WRX PPP, there is very little difference. The WRX certainly launches better (4 wheel traction), but the MPS soon pulls this back. The standard Golf GTI will be obliterated by the MPS, without any doubt. GTI is a smashing car, but no match (performance wise) for MPS.
The cabin is fairly standard inside, and nothing to really shout about. The Bose sound system, however, is very nice indeed and creates a lovely noise.
Getting about 25 miles to the gallon at the moment, which is to be expected.