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Mazda 323



  • bigsubigsu Posts: 2
    It's good condition. No rust, there's a small dent on the side but I bought it from a dealer so they'll fix the dent and clean up the car before I get it. They'll also service the car and get it certified. It's automatic.
  • 5spd5spd Posts: 38
    for an automatic in good condition. Try to flush and refill the radiator every year. The cooling systems of 323s tend to rust after 6 or 7 years of age. And I would change the thermostat every other year too. They have a history of failing if left unchanged.

    Other than these little things it is a solid small car.
  • rubysuerubysue Posts: 2
    Got an absolutely mint 94 323 hatchback, not a mark on it. Only problem, hatch seems to be leaking in to trunk. Is the hatch fit adjustable? Can I tighten it against the seal? Is this in fact a seal leak. Also, right rear tailight seems to have water in it. Any ideas??????
  • 5spd5spd Posts: 38
    Not sure about the trunk leak but the moisture-in-tailight is a common problem for this car. If I were you I will just ignore it...

    Regarding the trunk leak you can find it with the help of a garden hose. Sometimes it takes a while to figure out where the leak is.
  • rubysuerubysue Posts: 2
    I just washed the car and turned a hose on tailgate, hard to determine where water comes in. But I don't think it's the hatch seal. I have the cover for the hatch /trunk area, that is dry above, water coming in below. I suspect it is getting in through the tail light assy, how would water get in there? I have seen several 323's with moisture in the tail light. I appreciate your help 5 speed.
  • skibskib Posts: 1
    how many km's on a 1990 Mazda 323 would be too many ?? im trying to weigh my chances on a 173K for a 1990 std 323 against 167K for an auto 1989.
    seemingly most cars die in the 200K range which gives me abt a year and a half on both cars..wondering if anyone has more info.
  • sydney77sydney77 Posts: 2
    Well I am not sure about that 200K is the limit of a 323. I drive a 1987 Mazda323 and I have over 270k's on my car and it still drives like a beauty.
  • 5spd5spd Posts: 38
    would you mind telling me whether your car has an automatic or manual transmission, and have you had any problem with the tranny ?
  • sydney77sydney77 Posts: 2
    My 323 is a 5spd manual. I haven't had any work done on the transmission, just the oil being changed every so often.
  • dbulter1dbulter1 Posts: 1
    I badly need a new (inexpensive) car and I'm looking at a '92 Mazda 323 with 140K on it. It's in mint condition and has been driven by a widow since '92. (Honest. I've met her.)I can probably get it for $3,500 Canadian.

    The thing is, I've heard a lot about Mazda's bad reputation for transmission problems. Someone I know who had a '99 Protege has already had his replaced and he told me his mechanic regularly deals with Mazda transmission.

    Has anyone had these problems with 323's? I need to know whether I should buy the car or look for a similar model by Honda or Toyota.
  • 5spd5spd Posts: 38
    140K is nothing for this car *IF* the car has been maintained. (I am assuming you are quoting kilometer since you have a Canadian flag) If you have doubt about the transmission spend some money and have a professional take a look at it.
    And btw i think the price is a bit steep.
  • I'm looking at a 91 Mazda 323 (AT, PS, PB) in one of the local lots here. It's got about 150k on it, and the record checks clean, but I'm wondering if this isn't a little much for a twelve year old car? I've checked TMV and the Blue, and they concur, but still...

    Also, as this will be my first car (I'm 28. I was a late bloomer.) I'm trying to figure out if they're really as low-maintenance as rumour has it. I understand the parts are a little dear, but oh well.

    Mostly the car is destined for city driving with a fair amount of time on freeways and the highway out of town. I'm capable of doing basic maintenance myself (filters, fluids) but I'm wondering what major items are prone to dying on these models so I know what to budget for a slush fund. :)

    Thanks in advance from the newbie!

  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Have you tried plugging this vehicle into Edmunds' Used Vehicle Appraiser? While you're waiting here for more feedback, you may also want to check out Edmunds' Maintenance Guide where you can look up recall, TSBs, as well as the manufacturer recommended service schedule for the 91 Mazda 323. This may give you an idea of what kind of issues to look out for. Good luck.

    Hatchbacks & Station Wagons Boards
  • Thanks, Revka

    Oh I did that already. I walked into the dealer's office with about 15 pages of Edmunds and Carpoint data, a Carfax report and a lengthy checklist of stuff to look at before I took her out. I demanded a safety, title documents... the whole enchilada.

    Car dealers hate girls like me. :) I know. I've been reading about how much they hate us in one of the sales person forums. *giggle*

    The asking price was in line with LemonAid and the Edmunds prices (after conversion) so I didn't haggle too hard, but I tried for the sake of appearances. The Forms Must Be Obeyed.

    Of course, I STILL managed to have problems. *lol* Apparently I have magical invisible power steering on my model - I can't find a resevoir, even with a Haynes manual. :) (And yes, it's supposed to have it, dammit, I PAID for it...) So I have to send her back to the doctor for a few days to get it reinstalled - they took it out when they were working on the engine. Bah. *G* I was really cheesed last night, but now I'm just laughing that I didn't notice it sooner. I only noticed her fighting when it got dark and the temp dropped below -20c... then I had to stand on the wheel to make her turn.

    At the moment, she's undergoing a vehicle check at Canadian Tire so that if anything ELSE is wrong, I can specifically ask that it be fixed. (She idles high, she whines a bit when changing gears, and the one that worries me - she wanders all over the damned place... I think the wheels need to be aligned.)

    I bought her, and she runs like a kitten when she's *warm*. It's mostly aggrivating little things. And for those who don't think little things matter, sleep through a leaky kitchen faucet sometime. :) Small drops, big irritable.

    I'll keep you posted. Thanks for the help.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    and thanks for sharing the details. Hope you get all the problems/issues... resolved soon, so you are able to enjoy your new vehicle. Good luck, and thanks for keeping us posted. We look forward to hearing more.... ;-)

    Hatchbacks & Station Wagons Boards
  • 5spd5spd Posts: 38
    It would be unrealistic to expect no repair for a twelve year old car with 150k (km?) on it, agree ? So, here are some common problem areas of your car as far as I know :

    1. gas tank leak (~$300 canadian to replace with a brand new one)
    2. exhaust (cost varies depends on OEM or not)
    3. radiator leak from the plastic top (~$200 canadian to get a brand new metal one)
    4. timing belt water pump (maintanence item, $400 canadian parts and labour)

    Once these big items are taken care of you might have a few years of trouble free (well, almost) driving.

    Good luck.
  • I own a 1990 323 Hatchback 5-speed with about 210,000 miles. I've been the only owner. For about a year, when I step hard on the gas in fourth and fifth gear, the engine races but the car doesn't accelerate. Am I correct that this means the clutch is slipping? If so, I have several follow-up questions:

    A) Is this dangerous (i.e. am I risking my own or others' safety by not fixing it immediately) or merely annoying?
    B) What will eventually need to be replaced or repaired?
    C) How much will this type of repair cost (I live in Missouri, FWIW), and what's your experience with having it done at a dealer vs. at a private shop or transmission-only repair shop?

    I've seen some helpful posts on this forum and would like to thank those who've helped keep it going. Good job, everyone.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    Yes, it sounds like your clutch is slipping. At 210k, I would say your clutch has about had it. For the most part, the slipping is an annoyance, but it can get dangerous if you pull out in front of someone and need to get going quickly. Eventually, the slipping will get so bad, you might not be able to get the car moving and then you are left stranded (worst case scenario). You will need to replace the clutch disk, pressure plate, throwout release bearing, and possibly the flywheel (only if the clutch has damaged the flywheel). While you are in there, you might as well have the rear main crankshaft oil seal replaced, as I'm sure it's leaking from there or going to very soon. Total repair costs should range between $400-600. I would have a private shop that you trust do it rather then the dealer. They will be cheaper and probably know what they are doing more. Hope this helps you some.
  • 5spd5spd Posts: 38
    Wow. 210 k miles on your 323. Very impressive. It is even more impressive that your clutch just started showing signs of giving out. You must have been a good driver. Mind if I ask whether those are mainly highway miles ?

    If is quite amazing how durable these small mazdas are. Too bad this kind of quality are not shown in the 626 or MX6.
  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,322
    Anyway, anyone have to clean out the ventilation system? I think I've got mold or something in mine. How difficult was it? If you had a garage do it, how much did they charge?
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