Mazda 3 life expectancy

:
2007 3i & 2014 CX-5
I really miss my 3! A wheel from a dually that landed shinny side down caused the death of my beloved at 247k by knocking the engine and transmission off the mounts, cracking both the block and transmission damn near in half and making for one helluva misadventure!! RIP Gertrude!!

Glad you're still around to post about it! Yikes. I hope that didn't happen at highway speed.
 
Thank you. I hit it at 70mph and the tires went about 2 feet off the ground after I hit it. It was a blessing that no one was around me as I traveled from the left lane all the way to the right shoulder. The accident that was a result of the me hitting wheel was an even bigger misadventure than me actually hitting the wheel was.
 
:
Maryland, USA
:
2020 Mazda CX5 GTR
2011 Mazda3 i Touring, purchased in November 2010.

115,300 miles.

Maintenance:
- Oil changes, oil filters, air filters, cabin air filter
- Spark plugs at 75k
- 2nd set of replacement tires (OEMs lasted 45k, surprisingly. Michelin Premier A/S replaced at 100k.)
- 2nd set of brakes (OEMs lasted 90k), rotors turned
- Headlights replaced three times with halogens, finally went LED (should have done that sooner)
- Wipers, wiper fluid, coolant was low once at 65k so I topped it off with some FL-22. No signs of a coolant leak, and it hasn't dropped since. It is a mystery.

Repairs:
- Some @*%( rear-ended me in stop and go traffic before I had 1000 miles on the car. It wasn't TERRIBLE, but it knocked the license light bulb plastics out. I'm hoping the bump on his insurance to replace my bumper taught him to pay better attention. Jerk.
- Dealer oil change was messed up (overtightened filter?) and resulted in oil draining. Noticed when the oil light flicked on for a half second during a tight turn. Got that fixed quick, replacement oil and filter, cleaned engine bay, no cost of course. Was concerned about longevity but current shop says she's still in great shape.
- Rear caliper got locked for some reason around 20k miles. Warranty replacement of both rear brakes, calipers, and rotors.
- Driver's Seat track didn't feel secure and wobbled slightly. Replaced 3000 miles out of warranty and they wouldn't budge on covering it. Can't win them all.
- 2 motor mounts went bad. Looks like that's not uncommon. Replaced at 90k miles.

And the Big Bad Repair last year:
- Suddenly mushy brake that travels to the floor after going over a pothole. ABS control module went bad. THAT was a costly repair.


Added 11/3/2018: And after I post this, it didn't start yesterday. Was able to get it to start by giving gas while turning the ignition, have it at the shop. Could be a fuel issue.

Added 11/5/2018: Fuel line running 7-10 PSI low, no electrical or other issues, they think the fuel pump is dying. These last 2 years have been pretty expensive...4 new tires, ABS control unit, and now fuel pump. Again, just one person with a 2011.

Added 6/15/2020: 133,600 miles for what will likely be the final entry. AT flush at 120k, coolant exchange at 120k, Once every few months it'll be slow to start, so there's possibly something else going on with the fuel lines but a quick tap on the gas and it turns over. Since its so infrequent I haven't bothered to look into it further. If it happened once a month or more I'd be worried, but once every 4 months? Not worth the cost. Front brakes will need replacing soon, and rotors definitely need turning and probably replacement - vibration braking from high speed, and an inconsistent rubbing noise from front driver side at slightly increasing frequency from 15-20mph leads me to believe something's brushing against an uneven surface.

ANYWAY - brakes + rotors will be a few hundred on a 10 year old vehicle, that fuel issue has potential to get worse over time, and by 150k i'll be due for spark plugs, another AT flush, and probably another set of tires. I have a need for something bigger and was saving for a CX-5 Grand Touring Reserve. With the COVID sales and working from home reducing some expenses for additional savings, the stars may have aligned. The Mazda3 has treated me well overall. The big repairs hurt but that's just car ownership. Not as annoying as my wife's issues with her vehicle (Chevy Cruze: water pump, PCV valve, O2 sensors, hose failures, AC condenser went bad) but still. Carmax offer is 2K and I'll leverage that for my trade in this week. All I've heard is reliability getting better and better throughout the years, so I'm feeling confident in my next Mazda purchase.
 
Last edited:

WheelMcCoy

Member
:
Mazda3 iTouring Sedan 5 speed
2011 Mazda3 i Touring, purchased in November 2010.

115,300 miles.

Maintenance:
- Oil changes, oil filters, air filters, cabin air filter
- Spark plugs at 75k
- 2nd set of replacement tires (OEMs lasted 45k, surprisingly. Michelin Premier A/S replaced at 100k.)
- 2nd set of brakes (OEMs lasted 90k), rotors turned
- Headlights replaced three times with halogens, finally went LED (should have done that sooner)
- Wipers, wiper fluid, coolant was low once at 65k so I topped it off with some FL-22. No signs of a coolant leak, and it hasn't dropped since. It is a mystery.

Repairs:
- Some @*%( rear-ended me in stop and go traffic before I had 1000 miles on the car. It wasn't TERRIBLE, but it knocked the license light bulb plastics out. I'm hoping the bump on his insurance to replace my bumper taught him to pay better attention. Jerk.
- Dealer oil change was messed up (overtightened filter?) and resulted in oil draining. Noticed when the oil light flicked on for a half second during a tight turn. Got that fixed quick, replacement oil and filter, cleaned engine bay, no cost of course. Was concerned about longevity but current shop says she's still in great shape.
- Rear caliper got locked for some reason around 20k miles. Warranty replacement of both rear brakes, calipers, and rotors.
- Driver's Seat track didn't feel secure and wobbled slightly. Replaced 3000 miles out of warranty and they wouldn't budge on covering it. Can't win them all.
- 2 motor mounts went bad. Looks like that's not uncommon. Replaced at 90k miles.

And the Big Bad Repair last year:
- Suddenly mushy brake that travels to the floor after going over a pothole. ABS control module went bad. THAT was a costly repair.


Added 11/3: And after I post this, it didn't start yesterday. Was able to get it to start by giving gas while turning the ignition, have it at the shop. Could be a fuel issue.

Added 11/5: Fuel line running 7-10 PSI low, no electrical or other issues, they think the fuel pump is dying. These last 2 years have been pretty expensive...4 new tires, ABS control unit, and now fuel pump. Again, just one person with a 2011.

Thank you for such a detailed post! I purchased my 2010 Mazda3 iTouring 5 speed back in September 2010. It has 70k miles, and so far, I haven't had any major problems. We do have some similarities:

1. My driver's seat was a little loose and was firmed up with a recall (seat lifter links braced). The dealership took care of it, no charge.
2. OEM brake pads still on!
3. On second set of halogen headlights (you probably do more night driving). BTW, I don't think our headlamp housing reflector was designed for LED bulbs, and you may be blinding oncoming drivers.
4. Around 65k miles, had to top off coolant with FL-22 as well.

I do my own oil changes. Regarding your oil leak, I suspect the dealer put the new oil filter on without removing the old oil filter rubber gasket. That would cause a poor seal and result in oil leaking.
 
2007 Mazda3 S Touring just passed 175K. Looking forward to skip the next 2019+ generation.
Replaced Transmission Control Module at 171K
Replaced Bottom rear engine mount, Top right engine mount, left/right shocks at 152K
Replaced rear left suspension at 150K
 
:
Maryland, USA
:
2020 Mazda CX5 GTR
Thank you for such a detailed post! I purchased my 2010 Mazda3 iTouring 5 speed back in September 2010. It has 70k miles, and so far, I haven't had any major problems. We do have some similarities:

1. My driver's seat was a little loose and was firmed up with a recall (seat lifter links braced). The dealership took care of it, no charge.
2. OEM brake pads still on!
3. On second set of halogen headlights (you probably do more night driving). BTW, I don't think our headlamp housing reflector was designed for LED bulbs, and you may be blinding oncoming drivers.
4. Around 65k miles, had to top off coolant with FL-22 as well.

I do my own oil changes. Regarding your oil leak, I suspect the dealer put the new oil filter on without removing the old oil filter rubber gasket. That would cause a poor seal and result in oil leaking.

Regarding the LEDs, people in this thread (https://www.mazdas247.com/forum/showthread.php?123860852-2008-Mazda-3-LED-Headlight-Bulb-Advice) didn't seem to have issues, and as far as I can tell I seem to be OK. I got the SEALIGHT drop-in replacements, and my experience was that it appeared just as limited in height as was shown in Post #3 on that thread. I haven't gotten flashed yet - so far so good.

I will say, the LED high beams are HOLY CRAP police spotlights so I will rarely use them.

I had the seat issues before the recall, don't know if there's any way to get reimbursed at this point. I still need to get the recall done, actually, now that you mention it.
 

10Break

Member
:
07 Mazda 3 Sedan
We got our daughter a 2007 sedan, 2.0, with 176,000 on it and it isn't eating oil as bad as some stories I've seen. I've changed transmission fluid and the pan because it was rusted but everything else in the engine is bone dry. Also replaced the 3 mounts, rotors, pads, break fluid, belts, rear shocks and mounts, and tomorrow I'm doing the struts. Out of necessity, had to replace a shift solenoid, 5 year old battery, and hood release cable but all in all, this is a good little and easy to work on car.
 

goldwing2000

Turd in the punch bowl
:
2004 Mazda3s Hatch; 269,000 miles
Update on my OG 2004 3S Hatch:
I bought it new in February 2004, had 320,000 miles on it in September 2017 and it was still my daily driver. Lots of little things wrong with it (TNS relay, fuel tank leak, e-brake non-functional, body rusting out) but the engine still looked brand new on the inside and ran like a top. Even still has the original clutch.

Unfortunately, in September 2017 I hit an armadillo at 60mph and it took out the whole front end. Bumper, grille, AC condenser and radiator... shattered. So it's been sitting in my back yard ever since. A year ago I opened the door to move it and found that the entire interior was covered in green mold (water leak from the hatch). So now I'm torn between finishing the repairs (already have the parts) and making a Gambler car out of it or just scrapping it. Feels weird to get rid of it since it was my first (and probably last) brand new car ever. She definitely doesn't owe me anything.
 

Attachments

  • 20170511_073840.jpg
    20170511_073840.jpg
    176.1 KB · Views: 263
  • 20170708_213526.jpg
    20170708_213526.jpg
    233.7 KB · Views: 250

salguod

Mr. T'bird
My 2005 Hatch, bought new in Feb of 2006, looks similar to yours, with the addition of some wrinkles in the nose thanks to my daughter. It's pushing 220K and is consuming oil at an alarming rate (~200 miles to the quart). My daughter is driving it now and oil is cheaper than a new car, so she keeps filling it. It still runs and drives OK, it just looks terrible and has a drinking problem.
 

Attachments

  • 20190810_143429.jpg
    20190810_143429.jpg
    1.5 MB · Views: 240
  • 20190810_143445.jpg
    20190810_143445.jpg
    1.6 MB · Views: 275
How many miles does a Mazda 3 lst before having serious problems? 225,000? What is the most mileage out there of current users? Just bought a Mazda 3 sedan and drive 1,000 miles per week. Got the 3 year no interest deal, so I am sure to have 150K on it by the time I paid it off. Hoping to have it for awhile. Thoughts welcomed!
329,000 miles on my 2008 Mazda 3i. Can you believe I still have the original muffler
 
:
2014 Mazda3 S GT auto, 2008 MX5 6-speed
Update on my OG 2004 3S Hatch:
I bought it new in February 2004, had 320,000 miles on it in September 2017 and it was still my daily driver. Lots of little things wrong with it (TNS relay, fuel tank leak, e-brake non-functional, body rusting out) but the engine still looked brand new on the inside and ran like a top. Even still has the original clutch.

Unfortunately, in September 2017 I hit an armadillo at 60mph and it took out the whole front end. Bumper, grille, AC condenser and radiator... shattered. So it's been sitting in my back yard ever since. A year ago I opened the door to move it and found that the entire interior was covered in green mold (water leak from the hatch). So now I'm torn between finishing the repairs (already have the parts) and making a Gambler car out of it or just scrapping it. Feels weird to get rid of it since it was my first (and probably last) brand new car ever. She definitely doesn't owe me anything.

You should save yourself lots of time and just junk it. I know it's hard to do but as George Harrison said: "All things must pass."
 
:
2005 Mazda3
How long a Mazda3 will last greatly depends on what model/generation it is and what drivetrain(s) it was equipped with(amoung other things of course.. like how well it was maintained, but that aside..). Just like any other car... take the Civic for an example if someone said, "Civic's last forever, mine as 400k miles on it!..." you'll also hear "Civic's are crap, the transmission went out before 80k miles..."... late 1990's Civic's were incredibly reliable... starting with the 2001 model, the Civic isn't what it used to be, completely redesigned, new drivetrain, etc. and it just wasn't as reliable as the the previous gen Civic.

1st Generation, the 2.3 liter had problems later in life, and if you got the 4-speed automatic transmission (made by Ford), that also had problems... 2.0 liter seems generally more reliable, and the 5speed manual (made by Aisin-same manufacturer for Toyota) seemed more robust.

1st generation also seems to have the worst rusting, could be as it's the oldest and it's been out on the road the longest, but also just poor rust resistance and no cladding around the wheel wells(most common place of rust).

I have a 1st gen 2005, 2.0l, 5sp with 140k miles that is still running strong. I changed:

-The motormounts(common issue, swapped them out with non-fluid filled mounts) at around 80k miles.

-Changed the brakes and rotors(that's normal on any car.. when the brake pads wear out)

- Had the gas cap replaced(very early on, under warranty, it was a common issue.. the purge valve would get stuck).

-Changed the thermostat(also got stuck) around 100k miles.

-Changed a gear cog in the power window motor( 15 years in), works like a charm.

...all around a very, very reliable car compared to other makes/models of the same age and mileage out there.
----

Prospectively I've been keeping an eye on the clutch( I did a lot of city driving and stop and go), and as the car ages I do have some rust which I've sprayed rust inhibitor on.. eventually if I want it done right I'll have to get it cut, welded, and painted-which won't be cheap thus I keep spraying rust inhibitor to prevent it from spreading. Also people with 15+ year old Mazda 3's from the first gen also noted that their gas tanks(the top seal) are cracking/degrading/weathered by this point, so I'll keep an eye on that too.. I do see that my coolant reservoir tank has fractures in it... I sealed it with some silicone... another thing to keep an eye out for.

As for the 2nd gens, the 2.0 and 2.5 liter MZR motor (non skyactiv...carried over from the previous gen, the 2.5 liter is a scaled up version from the 2.0, making it more reliable than the 2.3 liter which mixed some parts) are very reliable as are the transmission... the 2nd gen introduced the 2.0 liter skyactiv motor and transmission which was a newer design and a transition during that time.

3rd gen is when some of the Mazda3's were coming out of the Mexico plant(which seemed to make a negative impact on quality, but to be fair... if you move production of a vehicle anywhere outside of where it was being built for years, you're bound to come into some issues), I know the power windows on many went out prematurely... in general I haven't kept on it's reliability as I only focused on my generation since I owned it... much like the 4th gen is too new too tell, though the drivetrain is a complete carry over from the 3rd gen.

Just keep in mind, not all generations are built the same, nor have the same drivetrain(another example, the simple port injected MZR25 will last a long time... but will the brand new skyactiv-X last just as long? We don't know, completely redesigned motor, only time will tell if Mazda thoroughly designed it right... just like how Mazda claimed to have mitigated carbon build up in their direct injection skyactiv N/A... fast forward to today and we know it's not necessarily true... )
 
Last edited:
Retiring my 2013 Mazda 3. Has 277,700 miles. Picked up a 2019 Toyota Camry Se to replace it. Car still runs. If I had to do it again I would have changed the transmission fluid regularly.
 
:
2008 CWP Mz3 4d 2.3L GT
I have my 2008 3 sedan GT still. Bought it brand new Sept. 20, 2008. My car has been a great car so far. I've made lots of memories. Only a few things I've had to replace like the passenger motor mounts has to replace twice. I've had to replace the axle twice but that's from being lowered. Just recently I have had the CEL on with P0791 code. Mazda first said I had over 2 quarts of Transmission oil... which doesn't make sense to me. Next was the wiring from the sensor to the CM was pinched. Now after less than a week I had to return it back with CEL and AT light on. At 191xxx miles, they said my TCM is bad and I need a new transmission. I decided to fix it since it's still a great car. It's clean inside and out with minor wear and tear. I love this car, it's been great. I'll keep it going until it can't be fixed or worth the money to fix.
 

clownshoes2

2017 CX-5 GT No Tech
:
CX-5
2008 GS, 279K kms on the clock. No major problems other than the rear shock mounts failing. All maintenance items. Brakes, struts, links, a couple of ball joints, tires, etc...

Hopefully it stays this way. I'd like to get another 2 years out of it.
 
:
2014 Mazda3 S GT auto, 2008 MX5 6-speed
1st generation also seems to have the worst rusting, could be as it's the oldest and it's been out on the road the longest, but also just poor rust resistance and no cladding around the wheel wells(most common place of rust).

My 1989 Mazda MX6 GT had zero rust after 25 years. I think rust is generally not a concern if the car were driven in warmer states or countries.
 
:
2005 Mazda3
My 1989 Mazda MX6 GT had zero rust after 25 years. I think rust is generally not a concern if the car were driven in warmer states or countries.
I was referring exclusively to the Mazda3, as every product was built differently, with different leadership, goals, budgets, etc... I knew a guy with a Ford Probe (essentially an MX6) who also did not have rusting issues in the Mid-Atlantic. So what may have been a non-issue in the MX6 may be an issue in the Mazda3, etc.

Two completely different products, different era, different people leading the product design.. it's hard to compare the two. The MX6 was a nice car by the way, pretty sweet that you had it for 25 years. I would also agree though, in general if a car has lived it's life in an area with low humidity and no road salting, then that is definitely a factor when it comes to rusting as well.