2000 Mazda 323 FGSE 1.5 Injection from UK and Ireland
Great runabout, but not really too useful for long distance work
Paintwork on the bottom of the door sill flaked off after a stone bounced from the road at speed. The underside of the sill appears to have some sort of rubber undercoat which apparently is designed to flex when hit. Unfortunately, the paint doesn't.
I've only done a thousand miles in the car. I came to the 323 from a Mondeo Estate TD. It's a different world.
No longer beaten away from traffic lights by little old ladies in Micra's.
This little beaut goes round corners like it's glued to the tarmac.
The seats are a bit harder than I'm accustomed to.
Headlights are a bit strange. The beam gives various zones on the road and the car could use a set of driving lamps.
Top gear seems very close, in ratio, to 4th. The car feels as if it could use another gear. Gearbox can feel a bit muddy at times especially if the change is a bit on the quick side. I've had one or two crunchers over the past week.
The ride is a bit on the lively side. At speed, concentration has to be 100% as Scottish roads, even Motorways, can tend to be a bit uneven.
The wiper control must have been put in back wards. I still have to look at the control before I use the wipers. Why would I want to spray water on the rear screen and not use the wiper?
The car does have several saving graces.
Loads of legroom both front and rear.
The boot is good for a car of this class.
Security is good. Alarm, immobilizer and remote central locking.
The electric windows have a safety cut out in case of body parts getting in the way. (I've not tried this one out yet)
Aircon...I LOVE IT!
I did make one modification. I changed the radio out for a Radio/CD/MP3 unit from Sony.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 15th May, 2003
I own a 323 F 1.8 Twin Cam Sport, apparently a limited edition before they switched the Sport model to 2.0 . There are a few things in this article, such as the gearing comments and the problems with fast shifting, that also ring true for my car. It's a great machine though, despite this - even if 100mph in 5th is close on 5000rpm. I've hit 120 before, but at this speed it was close on the red line and pangs of guilt made me back off. It's not a high speed cruiser in any respects, but definitely a machine to hit the twisty's with at pace. I'm really looking forward to the Mazda 6 MPS turbo next year!
I agree about the gearing comments. I have a 1.6 model, which is similar to this 1.5GSE, just 10bhp more and a few cc bigger (it replaced the 1.5) and find the revs too high for my liking. At dead on 100mph the revs are dead on 5000rpm. It hardly inspires one to go faster than this, even though I have. That said it is a cracking handling machine at the expense of a rather firm and sometimes noisy ride. Build quality especially interior is first class, Audi Standard.