1. Approx. How many miles are you all getting on the original brakes (pads and rotors)?
2. Are OEM pads and rotors they way to go or can you get same or better quality at a lower price? If so who has the "sweet spot" in aftermarket parts that aren't crap?
We've been in the 80k-100k+ range on brake pads with a mazda3 hatch, a 2016.5 cx5 touring and our 2019 diesel (almost 80k miles on it now. I'mma rotate tires on it tomorrow so I'll measure the current pad thickness). I'd say I'm at the higher end of what kind of wear mileage folks get out of the stock Mazda pads due to our operating environment and driving style and I'll take them down to 1mm thickness remaining before changing.
I like Raybestos Element3 pads and rotors for replacement. (Not that anything is wrong with OEM... They were fine)
As far as pads go I'm getting about 30k on the rears, maybe 35k+ on the fronts (miles), installed two new sets all the way around so far, 78k miles on the odo. State Inspection laws have a minimum thickness of 2/32". I'm not one to let the pads get down to minimum thickness so I probably could've gone an extra 5k longer. My favorites are Centric rotors with either Akebono or Wagner pads. OEM pads are fine but I get better grip with the Wagners, less dust with the Akebonos. I'm not one to cut rotors so they get replaced with the pads.
Half and half, 27 mile ride to work, going through 3 municipalities, about the same mileage I got out of my 2014 CX5. If you poke your nose around here a little as far as brake wear goes you'll find it's not that great.
So, at 78,800 K miles on our 2019 signature 2.2 diesel, the OEM factory front pads are at 7mm/7mm pad thickness (outer/inner) for both front brakes. The OEM factory rears are 4mm/5mm on the left side and 5mm/5mm on the right. Brakes normally smooth and steady with no vibration or pulsing.
The Conti LX25's have about 45k miles on them and are at 7/32 tread depth (when new they had 10/32 tread) with even wear across the tread. Tires are smooth riding quiet and comfortable as they were new with the exception of degraded hydroplaning resistance.
Brake and tire wear rates vary greatly from person to person based on environment and particular driving style.