1986 Mazda 323 from North America


Good car. I trust in it


Have not seen any problems yet except that I need to change two CV shafts because the boots are broken and I don't know how long of a time they were broken for. Though this is a problem with most used front wheel drives.

Also replaced the muffler.

General Comments:

Great ride. Only thing is that I wish it had a little more power for the hills and merging to the highway.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th March, 2006

31st Mar 2006, 08:07

Already replaced the muffler and now have to replace the cv axles after only 3000 km?

Hope you got if for cheap.

1986 Mazda 323 XG 1.5 petrol from Australia and New Zealand


Great first car


Someone inadvertently retarded the timing so it did not run very well until we got the problem solved.

Interior had a few rips.

Leaked a lot of oil, probably the gasket, but we never got round to fixing it.

General Comments:

I got it as my first car, liked it as a novelty for a few months, but then got very bored.

It had almost no power even from a 1.5l, and struggled around hills.

However it handled very well, I threw it around corners and it only misbehaved when pushed way too far (left foot braking on a downhill corner with very bad camber makes you spin out quite easily!!). Handled better than my new Nissan Bluebird SSS, and that has aftermarket racing suspension!

Exterior was in good condition except had been rear ended sometime during its life.

If you want a cheap, easy to drive car that won't break down this is for you, but you will get bored quite quickly.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 29th November, 2005

1986 Mazda 323 LX 1.6 from North America


An affordable little car that is still running


Seats have some wear.

Dash has minor cracks.

General Comments:

Nice, cheap car that handles well on a day to day basis. She starts up time and time again, and that's all I can ask for with a car that cost me $200.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st May, 2004

1986 Mazda 323 1.6 from North America


A good little city car


Nothing really had gone wrong with the car up until around the 315,000KM mark.

I blew the head gasket at about 315,000KM.

I also needed to replace the radiator at about 314,000KM.

The car has multiple oil leaks, but it doesn't burn oil.

The dash is starting to crack in some spots.

New brake calipers are required. The car shutters when you apply the brakes. I've had this problem since the day I got the car.

Wiper motor needs to be replaced as well. It doesn't wipe as fast as it should.

General Comments:

For the most part, this car has been good to me.

My mom bought me the car after I graduated from high school. It's a good little city car, but long highway trips aren't the greatest to take in it. Mainly because it's a small car, and there isn't a lot of room, especially if you're 6'4 and 230 lbs. like me.

I would have liked more power for passing and merging into traffic when I was highway driving, but the car was good for city driving.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 16th July, 2003

7th Oct 2004, 06:06


I just wanted to comment because, I to, have a vintage 1986 Mazda 323. It sounds like you are having trouble in the same areas that I am.

My Mazda is at about 155k, witch I can guarantee was rolled back at the dealership. I have had it since 1992 with barely any serious malfunctions.

The one thing on that car that I would have the manufacturers rethink would be the air hose (air filter to throttle body). As of the design, it is horrible. they decided to make it tapered on the end connecting to the throttle body. Why... I will never know. Anyway, good luck with your 323.

1986 Mazda 323 Turbo 4wd 1.6 DOHC turbo from Australia and New Zealand


When it's good, its very, very good


Head gasket blew at 100,000km.

Had an excessive appetite for clutches.

Turbo started to smoke at 110,000km.

Nylon radiator drain plug deteriorated and fell out on the motorway, causing catastrophic overheating.

Unhealthy noises started to come from the centre differential at about 160,000km.

General Comments:

Very quick, very nimble and very entertaining to drive, especially on gravel, wet roads or snow.

The 323 is an excellent performance bargain if you can find one that has a service history.

Parts are expensive, for instance NZ$350 for a head gasket set, NZ$700 for a clutch overhaul.

I ended up fitting a second hand engine into the car, instead of rebuilding the original engine. This was not such a good idea and I was never very happy with the result. Having said that, the car managed to do many high-speed, long-distance road-trips loaded with passengers and luggage, the only downside being the smokescreen that appeared whenever you overtook someone!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st June, 2003