2001 Mazda 323 GLX 1.6 from Norway




Joints clicking.

Brakes hanging.

RUST! And a lot of it.

General Comments:

The car drives well and is well equipped for its price tag. On longer drives of 1 hour+, it becomes uncomfortable. Partly because of the seats, and partly because of the rough ride and road/wind noise.

The car I bought looked as good as new. Still shiny paint, and the interior looking and feeling as new!

The car had been well maintained with annual servicing.

However, this was still not enough, as the car had heaps of filler applied to it under the body. The car had rusted way beyond repairability many years ago and will never pass another MOT. It has severe rust damage on all 4 corners, and also alongside.

Despite all the servicing, the fact that it had only done 58000KM in 13 years tells me that this car is of poor quality. I am utterly disappointed by Mazda.

A mechanic, judged by the looks of the damage that the car was already rusted beyond repair when it was 10 years old. And, judging by the service book back then, only had done 40000KM.

Never another Mazda.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 12th April, 2015

3rd Aug 2022, 16:09

I had a 2006 Mazda 6 and it rusted away at barely 10 years old. Mazda had rust issues in the late 90's and early 2000's no doubt. My father had a 1980's Mazda 626 and it was not anywhere near as bad with rust when it was 10 years old.

Newer Mazda's long term rust protection remains to be seen.

3rd Aug 2022, 21:56

Moving somewhere warmer could also be an option. This reviewer is from Norway. Any car will rust there in that weather and all the salt on the roads. Warm climate and don’t drive through deep puddles and splash water up onto the exposed metal underneath the car, and you’ll be OK.

4th Aug 2022, 22:25

Dunno man, I live in a cold climate (up north in the UK) and have had all sorts of cars over the years, through brutal winters and even the odd warm summer. Japanese cars in general are reliable but always rusted early on me, at 5 years or so. Not just Mazda, but I had a Honda that rusted early also. German cars fared a bit better (Audi, VW), cosmetic rust appearing at 10 years old, but nothing serious.

Right now I have an 11 year old Ford Mondeo that believe it or not has no rust whatsoever, I wash it every other week and service it and do average mileage, basically no different from the way I treated other cars, so who knows, it is hard to say sometimes what causes early rusting on some cars. I guess maybe living near the coast with salty air does not help, I have heard people blame rust on that, but then again I also know people that live by the seaside for years and swear their car has no rust! It's like an ongoing motoring mystery!

5th Aug 2022, 13:12

Not just Mazda to be fair - I remember Mercedes in the late 1990's and early 2000's having early rust issues on some cars.

26th Jan 2024, 17:00

We had a 323 as well back in the day. Great car until it rusted away at ten years old also!

2001 Mazda 323 GXi 1.3 fuel injection from UK and Ireland


The perfect family cruiser


Nothing much, had the anti roll bars replaced for the M.O.T.

But that was it, apart from a rear brake light bulb blowing.

Passed with no advisories; not bad for a 10 year old car.

General Comments:

The car is very comfortable, and as with most Japanese cars, very well equipped. Mine is the basic model, but still has power steering, electric mirrors and windows, plus an excellent CD radio. Do miss not having a sunroof though.

Bought this, as we needed a bigger car, and the space is excellent, with a nice big tailgate boot and folding 60/40 seats.

Considering it weighs just over a ton empty, the 1324CC 72BHP engine is powerful enough and performs remarkably well, though obviously it is not really fast, but 90MPH is easily sustainable, and I bought it to be a roomy family car, not a sports motorway guzzler.

Coupled with the legendary reliability these have, and at least 38MPG on a run, this is a very nice looking, perfect family cruiser.

I feel really comfortable and happy driving it around, and it is a very easy car to get used to. Certainly would recommend it to anyone!

Cannot believe how cheap these cars can be obtained for now second hand

Grab yourself a bargain, and go and get one!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th February, 2012

17th Aug 2013, 11:20

I must say, that since I wrote this review, I have found out the hard way that these cars have an Achilles heel - RUST.

The rear wheel arches on these are badly prone to it, and mine are starting to rot quite badly! May be worth noting if you live in the UK climate zone.

12th Feb 2014, 15:51

Ah yes, I've got the 2.0 Gxi turbo diesel, and had to have the rear wheel arches replaced because of rusting. That aside though, it's an excellent car - 177,000 on the clock and still very comfortable, and still doing 50+ MPG on long journeys.