1993 Mazda 323 Reviews from Australia and New Zealand

1993 Mazda 323 Astina GLX 1.6 SOHC Carb

Model year1993
Year of manufacture1993
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 1.6 SOHC Carb Manual
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired142000 kilometres
Most recent distance157000 kilometres
Previous carToyota MR2

Summary:

A Sheep in Wolves clothing, but good nevertheless

Faults:

Other than regular servicing, the car has been very reliable, although there are a few niggly things with it as you would probably expect from a 14 year old car, such as:

Idling has always been erratic, it varies between about 800rpm and 1300rpm, this probably has an effect on fuel economy, the carburettor could probably do with a service.

There is no gate between 5th gear and reverse (which it should have) though this isn't really a problem, but is a bit odd.

Bad steering vibration and brake pedal pulsation under braking, replacement of rear discs, and machining of fronts has not fixed this, but it has improved it greatly.

Has some corrosion on the edge of the rear left wheel arch and below the boot seal, unusual for a car of this age (in New Zealand anyway) think this is the result poor accident repairs.

The seats have a thread-like insert, which is wearing on the drivers seat, every time I vacuum the car out I have to cut a few more threads off. The steering wheel is quite worn, and has separated from the inner wire at the top - fairly common for 1990s Mazda's & Japanese Ford's.

The front seats could go back a bit further (I'm 6ft and can only just manage) though with the seat right back already there is only around 3-4in of space before the back seat.

An odd design feature is when I have my left foot on the foot rest, I cannot put the heater to the windscreen de-mist setting, as my foot is in the way of the control!

General Comments:

The fastback-like styling and pop-up headlights certainly give the car that something else, which similar cars (Toyota Corolla, Mitsubishi Lancer, and its Ford Laser cousin) certainly lack. It really stands out in a class of boring hatchbacks, and it looks like it is much faster than it really is.

1.6 engine is very reliable and simple to maintain, in contrast to the ex japan import models (which look the same, but have all the mod cons). Is also quite economical when driven nicely.

Handling is quite positive, with minimal body roll compared to similar models. The 64kW provided by the 1.6 single cam engine doesn't match the handling capabilities, the 1.8 GT variant with 103kW is the one to go for in that respect.

Good for pottering around town, it can cope on long runs, but it is noisy and less refined than a 2+ litre car, e. g a 626 or similar - which has better gear ratios and more power (for overtaking all of the people in 323s).

In conclusion; it's an ideal first or second car, or even just a cheap hack. It is perhaps the one of the newest cars that is simple enough the average person to maintain. Looks good for what its worth, likes going around corners, but not up hills. Don't bother trying to tow anything with it either (other than a small load of green waste maybe).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th August, 2007

1993 Mazda 323 LX 1.6 petrol

Year of manufacture1993
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.6 petrol Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.3 / 10
Distance when acquired129000 kilometres
Most recent distance131000 kilometres
Previous carHolden Barina

Summary:

A pretty decent all-round car

Faults:

Not much at all, small water leak while towing a trailer turned out to be a blown radiator hose - solution was a new hose $15nz, battery was nuked, apart from that, nothing.

General Comments:

After putting in a new CD player the car was awesome. A bit gutless compared to my old car, but it still gets you from A to B.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th January, 2002

Average review marks: 7.6 / 10, based on 2 reviews