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Mazda 626



  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Apparently Mazda learned their lesson here because the 626 replacement ( Mazda 6) has ABS and traction control as standard equipment and they finally got away from that pesky timing belt and went with the timing chain (at least that is what I heard). And they greatly improved the suspension and probably used better components.

    BTW, a fully loaded 2002 626 ES V6 MSRP was just about the same as that of 2003 Honda Accord EX V6 - about $ 26K. This comparison will not be applicable when you compare the resale value - Mazda will bring about $ 4 K less after three years. I do not know about the resale value of Mazda 6, but a fully loaded 2003 V6 model does retail for around $ 26K also. And you do not get a 240 HP engine with it.
  • windowphobe6windowphobe6 Posts: 765
    Like in the Accord, for instance?
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Yes, Accord still uses a timing belt for some reason, but at least the replacement interval is 105K miles, not 60k.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,146
    MSRPs may have been close, but actual street prices were quite a different story. If you caught it at the right time, the 626 could be had for substantial discounts, many times below invoice. Definitely can't say the same for the Accord, especially the V6. So, in reality, you're probably looking at more like a couple thousand better resale with the Honda.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    I do not know about the resale value of Mazda 6, but a fully loaded 2003 V6 model does retail for around $ 26K also. And you do not get a 240 HP engine with it.

    Nope, but you get 220hp in a chassis that is much more fun to drive. Every vehicle will have its trade-off. Personally, I like 160 ponies in the most balanced FWD car I've ever driven.
  • slickdogslickdog Posts: 225
    I'm not going to swap my timing belts at 60K. My manual says 105K, so I'll probably replace them before 100K, but certainly not at 60K. From what I can gather the 2.5 is a non-interference engine, so I won't be risking engine damage, just failure. Not sure I'll have the car that long anyway, as I'm only putting about 10-12K a year on it at this point.

    I'd also like to add that aside from the significant maintenance cost of replacing them (if you don't do it yourself), timing chains actually have some advantages over chains. They're cheaper, quieter, don't stretch, and don't require any lubrication.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    You mean timing BELTS actually have some advantages over chains.

    They are cheaper to make, but not necessarily cheaper to buy for all makes and models. I bought a timing chain and sprocket set for a V8 American car for $ 26 vs $ 72 for a Mazda 626 V6 timing belt without cam sprockets. True, timing belts do not require lubrication, but if your cam sprocket seals or the front crankshaft seal start leaking, you can loose your belt prematurely if it gets soaked in hot oil.

    One good thing about timing chains is that if they stretch too far, they usually jump a tooth or two on one of the sprockets, but they will rarely break or fly off. On the other hand, belts can break unexpectedly and cause thousands of dollars worth of damage to valves and pistons in interference engines (e.g. 95 Nissan Truck V6).

    As far as quietness is concerned, I have dual timing chains on the 98 Maxima and overall this engine is much quieter than the 626 engine, which has a single timing belt.
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    wow, Mazda's MSRP for that belt is $60. Of course, if you compare it to your Maxima with its 3 chains (about $175 MSRP) it's a different story than a timing set for a small block Chevy that can be had for $26 at your local 7-11 in the mid-west.
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    geez, I hope parts for my future Malibu Maxx won't be found at the 7-11!!! Apu, give me a tranny and a squishy!
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Now that this profound exchange of opinions is over, can we talk about something useful? Other than 7-11 car parts stores? Something that other readers can benefit from? Incidentally, the $ 26 timing chain/gear set was for a '67 big block Ford 390. And the set was US made too!

    Here is a good topic: how to keep the polished clear coated factory Mazda alloy wheels from pitting. Some suggestions:

    1. When you have your wheels balanced, ask them to tape the centering cone or use a plastic washer of some type to prevent scratching the clearcoat from the edge of the center hole. some places may use a flange adaptor (a rare occurrence), which centers the wheel by the lug holes so there is not need to worry about damaging the clearcoat. If they damage the clearcoat, buy some clear spray paint and apply the paint with a brush around the edges of the hole. This will prevent moisture from getting under the clearcoat, which causes rapid formation of aluminum oxide under the clearcoat and ugly veins of corrosion under the clearcoat that quickly radiate outwards.

    2. Always insist that they use coated wheel weights, such as polyester coated, on these wheels. It is important too that they use the correct weights. Some places use universal alloy wheel uncoated weights and these will damage your clearcoat and cause corrosion behind the wheel weight. I know, because the local Mazda dealer used these on my wheels once and they nicked the clearcoat in each case. When I asked why they do not use the proper weights, I was told that the tires should be balanced every 5K miles and therefore the weights do not stay on long enough to cause corrosion. What a lame excuse for being cheap. I do not know many people who rebalance their wheels every 5K miles, especially at $ 10 a wheel.

    3. Keep your wheels clean and wax often. These wheels are extremely impractical as far as corrosion resistance goes. Silver painted rough cast wheels are the best and do not cause the headaches these polished clearcoated wheels do.

    4. Insist that they torque your lug nuts to proper specifications after the wheels have been removed and reinstalled. Removing the lug nuts with an impact wrench is OK if you use a deep socket, but impact wrenches should not be used on locking lug nuts. If you use a shallow socket (as one character used on my old Mazda years ago) you will pock mark every aluminum skin coverd lug nut. These lug nuts cost $ 5 a piece to replace from the Mazda dealer. Periodic retorquing of your lug nuts is recommended on alloy wheels. I do it about every 5K miles. I use about 85-90 ft-lbs torque for these.
  • lpearce1lpearce1 Posts: 4
    Just bought a 98 626 2.0 - is the 2.0 a non interferance motor? ? ? ...but bottom line, CHAINS are better!!! I have NEVER replaced one, older Celicas had 'em, took one over 200k on original - rusted out first. Take ny chances on the belt. And please use hisitation when comparing a Maxima here, differnt league, maybe compare a pre-redesigned Altima. And Accords? The resale value is a wash CAUSE YOU CAN NEVER GET A GOOD DEAL ON ONE! ...snobby dealers too, hate 'em.

    I was laid off and my 02 Max SE 6spd was REPOED! Arrgghhh! Anywho, face it chains are more reliable and more durable, I doubt Mazda switched to Chains 'cause they suck, and the labor is what kills ya, not so much the price, huh? who cares about noise if thay insulate well (like on the Max)
  • lpearce1lpearce1 Posts: 4
    Sorry to dbl post, Maxda-Ford musta over invested in .coms, oh, wrong subject. It's all marketing crap, many models probably came through with those options at discounted prices anyway. (It's like buying that $8k Huyndai that doesn't exist cause they ship 'em with options anyway that makes 'em $10k).

    Guys, I think the emergency trunk release was a Federally mandated thing for all cars, so at least pick on them for things in their control.

    p100, hey Neon got a bad rap on the head gasgets. Only early models had this, and it was a vendor provided poor material. A different gasget fixed this permanently -(not every 45k) I had an 00 Neon I beat the snot out of, drove to CA and PA back twice, never an issue at 45k when I dumped it. So a cheap priced Neon 96 and after is a good buy. ...and take me along for BEERS! heh heh!
  • carguy58carguy58 Posts: 2,303
    Depends what dealer you go to. I've been to a Honda dealer once to look at the previous generation Accord Coupe. The salesman was really nice. I bought the Acura CL though instead.

    As far as discounts and resale. Thats about even. Cars like Mazda Protege or a Chrysler Sebring are selling well below invoice. A Honda Accord or a VW Jetta are not discounted at all. Its all about supply and demand. I can't believe Misubishi is selling a car for MSRP now: the EVO. If you told me Mitsu was going to sell a car for MSRP a few months ago I would be speechless.
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    the prices I posted were fact...your belief that a 390 timing chain has any comparison to any motor built today was opinion.
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    Any 626 owners ever experience this: every time I get in my car, I never know which 626 I am going to drive with the turn of the ignition. The car seems to have a mind of its own. On one drive, I might have a zoom zoom automobile, which does what I ask when I step on the gas; another turn of the key, and its like I'm driving something totally different, with the engine ignoring my need for speed. I've chalked it up to all the crap Ford parts in the car not playing well with one another. On the day when the Malibu Maxx comes in and it is time to get rid of this psychotic car, it will be interesting to see which car I give away: the one I'll cry over; missing the comfortable driving position and fun cornering; or the one which I will personally launch off a cliff, watching with pleasure as it incinerates on the rocks below.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Opinion? There are thousands of push rod V8 engines made by GM for their trucks and SUVs today and they all use timing chains. Also, boat industry uses GM blocks for their sterndrive and inboard engines, and they all have timing chains. And they are very similar to that of the 390 Ford engine because the cam location in the block is identical. The timing chains for the overhead cam engines are longer, and probably more expensive, and that's about it. Are you telling me they make these chains of some exotic materials these days?
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    Exotic materials...

    I don't know, but since you brought your Maxima into the equation, maybe you can tell me why it has 2 chains (between cams) shorter than your 390 yet cost $64 each.

    When talking about the expense of chain drive, don't forget to factor in tensioners/guides on an OHC engine like your Max that run over $200 themselves.

    BTW, got any idea how much a timing set for a current (<2000) small block is? I don't have that info handy.
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    "Are you telling me they make these chains of some exotic materials these days?"

    Don't know about the chains, but I do know that GM is using some sort of diamond coating on their chain sprockets on their new I6.
  • slickdogslickdog Posts: 225
    My comparison between timing belts/chains was generic, not specific to the 626, Maxima or any other car. Yes, one car's timing chain(s)/sprocket set can certainly be cheaper than another car's timing belt(s), but variations in supply and demand probably explain the difference in most cases. I'm sure that many of the parts in a 626 are more expensive than those in similar vehicles which are produced in larger numbers.

    Furthermore, I wasn't really saying that belts are better than chains, just trying to point out that there are *some* valid reasons for using them. Seems like many folks don't understand why a manufacturer would even consider putting timing belts in their engines. Would I rather have timing chains? Absolutely. Did I know the 626 had belts? You bet, and I purchased it anyway. You really shouldn't single out Mazda for criticism over using belts either - MANY other manufacturers have in the past, and some still do.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    VW still uses a timing belt in their latest 1.9 liter TDI turbo diesel engine. Breaking a belt on a diesel practically guarantees severe engine damage. Mercedes Benz has been using chains in their diesels for decades. The best and most trouble free set up I have seen is on some diesel engines. I owned an 82 Datsun pickup with a diesel engine. It did not use either a belt or a chain. Instead, cam was driven by a cam gear meshing with the crankshaft drive gear and the injection pump drive gear. The same set-up is used on large diesel engines(e.g. 2.5 ton Army truck 472 cu in Hercules multifuel diesel). No maintenance required. This type of arrangement does not work with overhead cam diesels, such as Mercedes Benz diesels for obvious reasons (crankshaft is too far away from the cam),so this is why MB uses a chain.
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