2004 Mazda 3 GX 2.0 from North America


I'm buying a Toyota this year


Cylinder misfire @ 2000 km, 2 months after I bought the car. Covered under warranty. Repair cost if not covered - $1500.

Right front wheel bearing @ 20,000 km (1 year of ownership). Not covered by warranty - $320 for repair. Argued with dealer to no avail.

Rear brake replacement (pads) @ 28,000 km (1/1/2 years of ownership) - a little early by any standards.

Car got broken into because of faulty door lock. $300 worth of electronics stolen. This was around the 1 year mark. Left a nasty dent on top of door handle of drivers door. Mazda wouldn't fix. Quoted $300 by body shop - left unfixed. Mazda fixed lock problem few months later by sticking in a piece of metal into the door frame. Thanks Mazda!

A/C compressor died @ 70,000 km mark (3/1/2 years into ownership). Not covered under warranty. $800 cost of replacement. Replaced in the winter so had no idea if A/C actually worked or not. Come summer, A/C doesn't work. Condenser/drier needs replacement. $700 later A/C finally works. Not covered under warranty.

105,000 km. Back driver side suspension strut sheers off the car while driving in the city. The top attachment inside the wheel well snapped off and was bouncing around inside the wheel well. Not covered under warranty. $600 to replace both back suspension struts.

130,000 km. Front right bearing goes again. $300 to replace. Needless to say, car is outside of warranty now.

133,000 km. Front left and right ball joints of the control arms needed replacing. $700. Not covered under warranty.

138,000 km. Front brake pads, rotors, back pads and rotors. Around $600 parts and labor.

138,000 km. Clutch plate is skipping. This will need replacement soon. Was quoted 900$ for the job. Still didn't fix.

Rust problems. Started in wheel wells, then noticed bubbling on the doors. Dealer replaced the doors under warranty.

1 year later noticed rust forming on the trunk and in front of rear wheel wells. Entire back of car was repainted under warranty.

General Comments:

I can't keep fixing this car. No accidents, not even a fender bender. Love the handling, but gas mileage isn't great and reliability has been horrible, as well as the service. Won't ever buy a Mazda again.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd January, 2011

24th Jan 2011, 18:30

Sorry to hear about your experience. I've had similar experiences with the Mazda 3.

2004 Mazda 3 S 2.0 from North America


Cute but cheesy


Transmission went within the first year of me owning the car, but it was under warranty.

Tires didn't last a year. CD player stopped working.

Material on all 4 doors came loose. Brake lights keep blowing.

Material on the seats started wearing.

It's definitely a car for going around the blocks, not long distance. Uncomfortable noisy ride.

Servicing the car at the dealer is the worst; you have an option of getting cheap part ex brakes or expensive parts.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 2nd January, 2011

2004 Mazda 3 S 2.3 from North America


Just what I was hoping it would be!


Nothing to date as of yet, except I have noticed the paint is rather weak. Already appears to be rusting around the tail light on the trunk lid.

General Comments:

Coming from a 2000 VW Passat turbocharged, in terms of reliability, this car blows that one out of the water. Every other day I was having something new go wrong with the Passat.

I have only had my 3 for a few months, but like many people have said, it is a mini BMW 3 series at a fraction of the cost. It looks amazing (my favorite features are the body kit and clear euro lights on the end).

The steering wheel mounted controls are a nice touch, although they take some getting used to (the volume and seek buttons should be flipped), and the sunroof is great, although noisy at high speeds.

The shiftronic/tiptronic trans is great (had it on my VW Passat too), but it is a little disappointing that the car is only a 4 speed auto; a 5 speed would be ideal for highway driving (I believe they changed that in the newer model years?)

I also seem to be getting more brake dust than ever before, but I think it is because the previous owner just threw a new (cheap quality) pad on (squeaks like no other).

But I tinted the windows, and that... mixed with the silver metallic paint makes the car look great. Every day I seem to get compliments on it. The dash is also neat too with the red light going through the stereo, and the odometer and speedometer are nice looking too. I love the ambient lighting in the gauges, and my cup holders too, certainly a nice little touch.

My only complaints are (besides the trans being a 4 speed), it shifts kind of goofy from 1st to 2nd at times (told this was typical -- goes down after the car is warmed up for a while), and the front passenger window sounds like it is cracking when going down.

Also, the gas mileage is pretty good too (around 26.7 MPG highway going 80-85 MPH... about 22/23 city with a lead foot).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th August, 2010