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When you have a family, owning a car that’s both fun and practical is important, especially when you’re driving the kids to school, soccer practice, and play dates. And often times, a midsize sedan is the perfect choice for active families. But the words “midsize sedan” usually don’t scream “fun to drive.” But the new 2012 Mazda 6 maybe capable of erasing what you believe a midsize sedan really is.

The 2012 Mazda 6 is more of a fine-tuning, rather than complete overhaul of the 2011 model, according to Edmunds. The car comes in two horse-power options, either 170 or 272 horsepower. There’s a huge gap there in performance, and what the faster model gains in horsepower it loses in fuel efficiency.

The Mazda 6 starts at around $20,000, but can go as high as nearly $30,000. At the high end, you pay for what you get, however. Not only do you get the more powerful engine, you also get a series of plush interior upgrades including a center console with Bluetooth technology built-in.

For the safety-conscious, all standard 2012 Mazda 6 models come with anti-lock disc brakes, front-seat and full-length curtain side airbags, and stability traction control.

But this car is really all about whether you like to drive or not. Rivals in its class are inferior in terms of handling, according to Edmunds. And while it may not rank as highly as the Nissan Altima in terms of how fun it is to drive, the Mazda 6 is bit more noisy, a bit more bouncy, the sort of thing that appeals to a car driver more keen on a Top Gear style driving experience than the status-quo midsize family sedan.

Before you take your new car off the dealership lot, be sure to consider what your new car insurance payments will look like. Get a free online car insurance quote and see how this might impact your car budget.
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