1997 Mazda 626 glxi 1.8 from UK and Ireland





Keep an eye on your brake pads and rear brake callipers though. Also, make sure that whoever replaces your brake pads knows what they are doing, as the quick fit morons of this world have been known to burst calliper seals.

Suspension link arms (esp. front passenger side) are prone to wear, but anyone driving on Irish roads shouldn't be too suprised.

General Comments:

Very accomplished car which is very underestimated in Ireland.

I got the last of the 92-97 shape, which in my opinion was the most striking looking car for years.

Very smooth comfortable cruiser, and unbelievably economical for a 1.8L which was driven enthusiastically.

Driving position is excellent, lots of goodies as standard, good fuel economy, and 100% reliability, - what more do you need.

OK, body roll is an issue on country roads, this is the price you pay for the level of comfort.

Parts are crazy money, why??? Thankfully, you won't need too many, but if and when you need a main dealer part, dig deep.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th October, 2005

1997 Mazda 626 LX from North America


The Mazda 626 is a Lemon


The transmission has failed 3 times.

The power steering as failed twice.

The radiator has failed twice.

The computer failed once.

The idol air control valve has failed twice.

The timing belt was replaced around 60k miles because it was failing.

The brakes consistently wear out within 30k miles.

The rotors have been replace because they need to be milled too many times.

The belts had to be replaced before the warranty expired.

It had a defective rear tire that blew a tire the first day I had it.

General Comments:

The Mazda 626 is a lemon. I bought it new and it first broke down at 15,000 miles and has had more problems than I can list. A few weeks back it started having problems again and I tried to get it fixed. After replacing the idol air control valve the dealer told me I needed a new transmission. Since it was going to cost 3500 dollars at the dealer I tried to take it to AAMCO. This was a mistake as they've been unable to fix the problem after 2 weeks and 3 tries now.

Today I thought I would do a Google search to see if anyone else has had this problem and what I found is that thousands of people have had similar issues with this car. Mostly transmission problem, this is my third, but by no means my only problem with the car.

There is a Michigan law firm pursuing a class action against Mazda and after speaking with them today I found that they are working on making it a national class action. I of course added my complaint to their list of names and hope to hear back because it's clear to me that Mazda fails to recognize the problem. The simple fact is the Mazda 626 is a lemon and owners are wasting their time and money attempting to keep this car running.

To contact the law firm in Michigan who is working on this class action call 248-540-7660.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 8th August, 2005

21st Aug 2006, 07:07

I guys, I notice the US Mazdas are awful cars. This is in contrast to Japan-built models which are enormously reliable, perhaps it is because US machines are actually built in the US. Obvious when you think about it. :-)

27th Aug 2006, 18:56

My 1997 Mazda 626 has been great. I did have a problem with the tranny at 30K miles due to the increased engine size without modifications to the transmission. But this was done under warranty, including the modifications. Air sensors were a problem until I found a mechanic (not going to Goodyear) who got after market sensors. No problems since then. Complaining of a timing belt at 60k miles? Get real, that's normal. This is my 4th 626. I will get another. All of my 626s have had over 175K miles, when they met with unfortunate endings (none my fault). This 97 has 125K and going strong. People are amazed its almost 10 years old. Looks and drives great with good care.