Stabilizer bar and bushing squeak tremendously, especially in cold weather.
Steering alignment performed several times.
Tires worn prematurely.
The plastic cowling at the top of the rear hatch has begun to crack symmetrically on both sides where the hatch is attached to the car body.
The weakest part of the car seems to be the suspension. The car groans and squeaks as many others have reported.
The car "eats" tires.
Gas consumption averages 8.5 l/100km, mostly on highway, which is not as good as I would have hoped.
Ground clearance is very low.
Having said that, by and large we've been happy with the car. Nothing else has failed and the only maintenance so far, other than the shocks and tires, has been in the form of oil changes.
The car is very versatile and suits our family of 4, plus 2 big dogs. We bought the Thule roof rack and put a class 1 hitch for a bike rack on the back (which we don't use very often).
When the in-laws are in town we can haul all 6 people (w/o dogs), and on the flip side, if I need to go to Home Depot there is enough room to accommodate 8ft lengths of lumber (with closed hatch and passenger seat folded forwards).
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 13th July, 2010
22nd Sep 2010, 00:46
I own a 2006 Mazda 5 sport. Have had both rear struts replaced. One at about 12,000 km the other around 50,000 km.
Also I have had the front bushings replaced (squeaking) and now need the rear bushings replaced (squeaking) at 90,000 km.
For the record, I live in a mild climate with no gravel or rough roads.
2006 Mazda 5 GT 2.3L from North America
A Japanese machine
One of the retaining clips for the sliding door seal was missing on both sides of my vehicle.
The steering wheel is not centered when I am going straight and has been like this since day one, but the dealer refuses to fix it, claiming that I must have "hit a curb".
The part that holds the disc brakes in place is rusted on all 4 wheels and has been since new, but the dealer refuses to replace them "unless you want to pay for powder coating".
Sometimes when the car is cold, the transmission will jerk violently from first to second.
This car is an excellent value for the amount of money I paid for it ($24,895 + TAX etc). The handling is pretty decent, and the ride is well damped. However, this car just doesn't endear itself to you. Previously, I had a Ford Focus ZTW, and despite it being unreliable, I really loved the way it drove, and became quite attached to it. This Mazda5 on the other hand, is just a machine. Sure, it performs VERY well and is refined and is cleverly designed... but its just not a car you love. I don't think I will have any issues trading it in in the future and even though this car is so new, I've already began to eye my next car.
If you are simply looking for a car the drives well and is reasonably reliable at a fair price, the Mazda is certainly something you should look at. Otherwise, I would recommend a car that does more for you emotionally.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 27th November, 2006
30th Nov 2006, 16:45
Doesn't this car share a lot in common with Ford? If so, I would not call it a Japanese machine. Unless it really is and the 3 and the 6 are only Ford vehicles.
1st Dec 2006, 09:43
Although your comment is valid, the reality is there is a lot of platform sharing going on these days. The Mazda3 shares its platform with the European Focus (not the piece of crap version we have in the US), Ford Edge, Volvo S40 and coming C30, and so on.
But if you look at each of the above cars they have very different purposes and driving characteristics. The Mazda was designed and built in Japan, Volvo Sweden, etc.
Want more? Bentley Continental GT, Audi A8, and VW Phaeton are all based on the platform. Likewise for Audi A3/TT and the VW Golf. Jaguar S Type was a cousin to the Lincoln Continental, the X Type a Ford Mondeo. And so on.
All of this isn't necessarily bad unless the platform is bad, and the end result is a cheaper car in price. The Bentley, while expensive at $150K+, would have been $250K+ or more without it.