1998 Mazda MX3 Review

1998 Mazda MX3 RS 1.6i DOHC from UK and Ireland

Model year1998
Year of manufacture1998
First year of ownership2004
Most recent year of ownership2005
Engine and transmission 1.6i DOHC Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired33600 miles
Most recent distance36250 miles
Previous carHonda Accord


Rather rare Mazda coupe with large following on the internet



General Comments:

Bigger more "sensible" and practical 2+2 sporting brother of the Mazda MX-5.

You can actually get 4 passengers in this sports coupe - even though it looks like a 2 seater.

108 Bhp engine adequate for everyday in the city driving - good acceleration, economical on fuel, NOT "lethal" to drive.

Mind boggling cornering ability.

Stops on a dime with its 4 disc brakes.

Excellent aerodynamics at motorway speeds - stays glued to the highway.

Futuristic sporty driving position.

Visibility is rather very good for the shape - but configure your seat & mirrors for maximum all round visibility.

You sit IN this car - it seems to wrap around you!

No loss of street credibility driving this coupe - it has a body to die for.

Practical boot space - can be expanded by folding rear seats.

Interior is spartan but adequate just like all true sports cars should be - you concentrate on your driving, not fiddling with gimmicky gadgets.

Dashboard well laid out.

Electric pack includes Pop-up and slide back sunroof, power windows, central locking & adjustable headlights.

This IS a sports car, buy it not for the power, but the adequate performance and beautiful slinky "Porsche 911-nesque" body shape.

Cheap "pose-mobile" that will not break the bank insurance wise.

Very reliable 1.6i DOHC engine - starts and goes everyday without missing a beat.

Trivia: The MX-3 was actually used as one of the futuristic (background) cars in the movie "I, Robot" - apparently on account of its still futuristic looking body, despite being introduced originally in 1991!

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

Review Date: 22nd April, 2005

8th Jul 2005, 23:23

There is no such thing as a 98 Mazda MX-3 RS. Mazda quits making the MX-3's in 96!!!

6th Jul 2006, 01:52

I also have a Mazda MX 3 1998 model, although mine is the 1.8 V6 model, and I don't think it's an RS! Any clues on what BHP my car has? Can I get it chipped/add a supercharger? Do you know any websites with info??? Any help would be appreciated.

3rd Oct 2006, 10:17

I also have a Mazda MX3 1998. It is silver in colour and has barely a mark on it. It goes very well indeed and was bought from a dealer with full service history and 'log book' document. The person who says they stopped making them in 1996 is talking pure rubbish.

2nd Nov 2006, 13:05

I owned a Mazda MX-3 1.8i V6 on a "R" plate. One of the last UK spec cars to come off the production line. Best car I ever bought. I have even seen an MX3 on an S plate.

11th Dec 2009, 13:09

I have a red MX3 V6 on a R plate; I love it. However parts are expensive, but the car is quick once past 3000, but I think visibility is poor; looking right on a roundabout, you need to stop because you cant see over the barrier. Also the rearview mirror is too low and obstructs the left view in my opinion, but I am 6 foot 2 and 18 stone ha ha!

29th Jun 2011, 02:57

Sorry, it's a bit late for my comment. In Jan 2010 I sold my 38k black MX3 1998 S reg as I wanted a bigger car. This was the worst mistake I ever made. It had no fancy gadgets like modern day cars, but it was reliable to a t. For 13 years old, it looked sexy and fantastic too. But thanks to ebay I managed to locate a 98 R on 90k to tide me over until some pensioner unearths one from their garage with 25k on it, well you never know the S-reg was off ebay 23k back in 2009... Mmmm should have kept it, what a twit.

Average review marks: 7.8 / 10, based on 1 review