Mazda 2 Reviews from Australia and New Zealand

2003 Mazda 2 1340cc

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2010
Most recent year of ownership2012
Engine and transmission 1340cc Automatic
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 2 / 10
Comfort marks 3 / 10
Dealer Service marks 2 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 2 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
2.8 / 10
Distance when acquired81000 kilometres
Most recent distance92000 kilometres
Previous carHolden Barina

Summary:

If the Honda Jazz had the Mazda's hydraulic steering, it would have been perfect for me

Faults:

This is a big list…

First major problem was when I asked a tyre company to install longer valve stems, as the stupidly wide wheel trims prevented me from checking tyre pressures. After I got the car back, the ride and handling seemed markedly inferior. They of course denied this. Now the valve stems are long and floppy, and are still difficult to check.

I then had Monroe shocks put in the front. This made absolutely no difference to the appalling low speed ride, and was a waste of $600.

Then the car began misfiring, then running on only 3 cylinders. After a $300 2 year service, this was unfortunate. It cost another $300 to have a coil replaced. BTW, the fuel consumption rose dramatically when it was running poorly.

A year later, the problem cropped up again. My mechanic brother offered to change the spark plugs. Freakishly, the poor running happened when he restarted it, and he soon diagnosed another defunct ignition coil. This cost $200 at trade price to replace - labour was free (thanks, bro!).

Apparently, once the coils start to go, they all go. I can look forward to another $400 minimum on the last two coils, plus a new battery (the original one is finally showing signs of impending demise).

I am on an Invalids benefit due to multiple health problems, and I cannot find a job to pay for these repairs. I thought Japanese cars were reliable? Not in my experience.

General Comments:

I originally thought about buying a Honda Jazz (also called Fit here - not a name ever associated with me!). I was put off by tales of failed CVT transmissions, though apparently this problem is quite rare.

I tried out several cars on an open road loop, and this Mazda was the best to drive, and had a nice cheery interior (I hate all black). I subsequently found that in town it is a very jiggly, unsettled beast. The power is only at the top end, nothing down low. It is not economical. The Honda is a far more relaxing, more effective and economical town car. Pity it has electric power steering, which I loathe.

The 4 speed transmission is pathetic, jerky and always changing inappropriately.

The load area is quite spacious and well designed, but the flexibility is spoiled by the very hard seats, which prevent the folded seats being used as a bed for a roadside rest. They should at least never wear out.

Economy is around 38 MPG, around 10 MPG less than the Honda. It does cruise nicely at 100kph, but with a need to concentrate on steering that would be tiring on long journeys. I have been spoiled for life by prior ownership of a Peugeot 505 - nothing else comes remotely close for sheer comfort and drivability.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 22nd December, 2012

2007 Mazda 2 CVT transmission 1.3

Model year2007
Year of manufacture2007
First year of ownership2011
Most recent year of ownership2011
Engine and transmission 1.3 Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired13000 kilometres
Most recent distance15500 kilometres
Previous carHonda Civic

Summary:

We are in love with this car!

Faults:

Dealer had to sort out the boot release button, plus some other glitches with the KeyLess entry system our car has. I recommend you test all aspects of that if you are considering a car with this feature. Can be very expensive to fix. But brilliant when working properly.

General Comments:

An absolute delight to live with. Steering is magic, and way better than the similar sized cars we tested from other manufacturers. I drive this in preference to my 3L Honda Accord - just for the 'fun' element of the little Mazda.

I'd especially recommend that, unless you get a manual, you go for the CVT transmission, not the automatic. We tried Auto examples but they felt crude and slow. CVT takes a week or two to learn how to use to best effect, but once you get the hang of it, the system is a joy, and a key to this little car punching well above its weight on the road.

Interior is smart, but those jolly head rests make it impossible for anyone with a longish back and/or neck to get comfortable. I am about 5' 11", and have to slope the driver's seat way back to make it tolerable. There's no lack of room; it's the awful angle the head rest forces on you. I've spoken to other owners who say the same.

Overall, car looks great, and feels both zippy and really well engineered. Only other glitch though is rearward visibility when reversing. You should check this out before you buy, to see if your shape is as incompatible on that score as mine and my wife's. But when everything else is so good, the odd shortcoming is easy to forgive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st December, 2011

16th Feb 2014, 21:46

I commend you on your resourcefulness in locating a Mazda 2 equipped with a CVT. You must have the only one in the country, if not the world. Are you sure your Mazda doesn't come with a Honda badge in front?

17th Feb 2014, 13:05

A Mazda2 with CVT?!? Heck, one of the selling points of that car is that it isn't a CVT, but a normal torque converter automatic.

5th Jul 2014, 07:11

Hi all.

I've got a CVT 2008 1.3 Demio. This car is unbelievably good, it drives so well and has plenty of power for every day use. Occasionally I have to put some petrol in the tank; very economical.

As mentioned by another post, the CVT works really well, the car accelerates like a rocket, all because it doesn't change gear with the CVT unit.

Now that I'm used to the CVT, the standard auto transmissions seem sluggish.

Average review marks: 7.8 / 10, based on 6 reviews