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Mazda6 Hatchback



  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 6,343
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  • fitguyfitguy Posts: 222
    I've had my 6S for about two months, the front air dam hangs very low, I'm ultra-careful and have almost scraped it 3 times, you need to be very aware of where the front end is anywhere near curbs/curbstones. Ditto for the 50 series tires- there is almost no sidewall to protect the wheel spokes from encounters of the curb kind. We haven't had much snow (yet) in the Northeast, but based on what I'm hearing about the lack of grip from those Michelins you wouldn't want to drive the car in snow deep enough to come over the air dam anyway, unless you put on snow tires. I have an auto V-6 and was willing to sacrifice some on the gas mileage to have the V-6; if you are considering a stick you might be happy with the four. With an auto the four is barely adequate. The V-6 does run perfectly fine on 87 octane, I've been averaging about 22 mixed but this should improve as the engine continues to loosen (2200 mi as of now). Overall, I'm extremely happy with this car, and yes, you will love the hatchback- it was the deciding factor for me. Happy Zooming!
  • sstrz1sstrz1 Posts: 28
    I just bought my Mazda6 5-door approx 1 month ago- I love it! My last car was an '01 Saab 9-3...though I like the looks of the car, I think the most impressive part of the car is the interior.


    Regarding your 2 questions:

    1) I haven't had a problem w/ ground clearance, nor do I expect it to be a problem

    2) V6 vs V4...I can't answer that because I did not test drive the 4 cyl


    By the way...I bought mine in silver with all the bells and whistles- leather, auto trans, moonroof, bose upgrade (worth the money)
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 6,343
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  • Hi,

    I purchased my Mazda 6s five door, 5spd man. last August, just recently broke 4k miles( I have a 94 Accord I drive daily to work). I too am expercing trouble with the clutch,(Shudder, Judder).Please, if anyone knows of any TSB's - please post!
  • hus28hus28 Posts: 8
    I just purchased an 04 Mazda 6 5-door with the V6 engine up in New Hampshire. After driving the car home I noticed that the space behind the rear passenger tire and the wheel well was very tight. I could barely get my finger around the tire. I just took the car into the dealership (Talarico) and they said that there was no problem with the car and that the 3/8" +/- spacing was adequate. I guess this is where the gas tank is located. My big concern is that if I run over something and it gets stuck in that area it can cause hazardous damage to the gas tank and the tires will not last. If I decide to throw a large oven (for example) in the trunk the entire frame will go down and the gas tank will hit the tire. I think this is a real hazard and wanted to know how I could find out what the federal regulations are for spacing between the tire and the wheel well.


    Also, if you guys can check your cars and tell me if you are concerned with this as well. The dealer told me that no one else has mentioned this problem.


    Also my gas mileage is horrible. I am getting about 17 mpg. Will this improve?
  • sstrz1sstrz1 Posts: 28
    I recently purchased my '04 Mazda6 5-door in November....prior to that, I was driving an '01 Saab help answer your question, yes- the space btw the tires and the wheel well is tight (I have to measure it, and will post shortly)....but w/ 17" wheels, I wouldn't expect it to be less...when I owned my Saab, it only had 15" wheels, and the space btw the tire and the car was very noticeable ... usually cars w/ 17" tires have little room in btw themselves and the body of the car...take a close look at most Corvettes, BMW's,etc....


    That said- I know nothing about Federal regulations regarding space allocation btw tires/ car body....I personally am not concerned about this, nor have I ever heard of anyone mention this sort of thing.


    Regarding gas mileage....I drive approx. 30k annually, and compared to my Saab 9-3, I do find myself filling up more often...I cannot quote you the mpg, but (without knowing what you used to drive)...I would guess that you are experiencing less mpg than you are use to getting...that said- from my point of view- I am very pleased with the quiteness and performance of the engine...and I think the extra couple of bucks/per week for this in gas expense is worth it....another point to consider- most (if not all) cars with this type of performance normally require Premium fuel- so though you may not be getting the mpg you expected...feel good about the fact that you are saving approx $0.20/ gallon by needing not to put Premium fuel into your 6.


    All that said- how do you like your car overall?....I don't miss my Saab for a minute- the leather is much better, along w/ my auto climate control, and BOSE to hear you thoughts too.


  • fitguyfitguy Posts: 222
    I've had my 6S out in the snow a few times now; no problems with smaller tire clearance and snow buildup (I kick off the clumps behind the tires just the same as on our Expedition). Handles snowy roads suprisingly well for performance tires, too. Gas mileage another issue- I have 3K miles and am still averaging 22 mpg mixed, no straight higway measurement yet. Most of the other sport sedans I tested were turbo's (and more expensive) and need premium (also the Acura TSX which requires premium and is a very nice car, BTW). The .20/gal difference helps compensate for the mileage, and hopefully the long-term durability of the V-6 (with its timing chain vs. belt on most I-4 turbo's) will be another benefit. I am still hoping to get up to 24-25 mixed as it loosens further but questioning now whether that's realistic. Love the car otherwise and 0 problems so far, also tight as a drum, no squeaks/rattles/etc.
  • hus28hus28 Posts: 8
    Thanks for the reply. I have seen that there haven't been too many others raising this issue, but it just concerned me. I will just keep an eye on the wear of the tire.


    before the 6 I was driving a 1998 nissan Maxima and was considering buying a new Maxima, but decided to go with the 6 instead. My 98 Max required premium, however, the 05 maxima I was looking at only required regular. I was getting better mileage from the 98 maxima and didn't understand why I was only getting 15-17 mpg on the 6. Hopefully as I drive it the mileage improves.


    I do miss my Maxima at times. Other than that I like the car and enjoy driving it. leather is good, space for rear passengers seems ok, (however, my kids keep kicking my seat). Love the traction control.


    The only other things I noticed is that the rear defrost seems to take a long time to defrost the windows and my front wipers seem flimsy (had wipers replaced by dealer once already).
  • After a lot of research and number-crunching I bought an '04 Mazda6 S 5-door about three weeks ago; my first-ever new car purchase. Previously I drove an '87 VW Golf GT 4-door (231,000 miles on the odometer when I donated it to a non-profit last week). I wanted another good-handling hatchback, but reliability issues drove me away from a new VW purchase for now. My Mazda6 5-door is glacier silver, V6, 5-speed manual, charcoal cloth interior, and major options include the moonroof, side/curtain airbags and the Bose sound system. So far I'm really pleased. I've driven approximately 1,000 miles and averaged about 26 mpg combined city/hwy driving. I live in Colorado and ski frequently, so I purchased a set of four aftermarket 16-inch alloy wheels and winter snow tires (slightly higher profile tires than the stock 17-inch Michelins). I haven't had any problems with snow build up in the wheel well with the 16-inch snow tires. I am a little concerned after reading about the clutch shudder issue. The clutch on my car doesn't shudder, but its engagement/disengagement (particularly in reverse) is not as smooth as it could be. Well, happy motoring, fellow 5-door owners!
  • mz6greyghostmz6greyghost Posts: 1,230
    First of all, great choice for a new vehicle. I myself learned how to drive on an '87 Golf GL 4-door, and was to inherit it for my 17th birthday, but it was totaled a week before. Oh well...


    Good choice buying snow tires, I don't know what I'd do without mine, especially since I live in Upstate NY (lake-effect snow country). Anything is better that the OEM 17-inch Michelins! I bought steel wheels and 16-inch Michelin Pilot Alpin PA2's, and have actually enjoyed driving in the snow and ice ever since.


    As far as the clutch shudder is concerned, since you only have 1000 miles, you have nothing to worry about, it's barely broken in. I've heard from some owners that the clutch take-up point sometimes varies, and it's hard to start off smoothly, especially when it's cold. I've noticed it happen once in a great while to my car, but after 6500+ miles, it's either gone away, or I've gotten used to it.


    The one thing that annoyed me when I took ownership of my 6 was the engine revs during a shift. Because of emissions issues, when I upshift, the engine revs actually increase 500-1000 RPM for a split-second, before dropping down as I engage a higher gear. I know it's emissions related, but I don't know if only Northeast U.S. cars do it (due to California emissions laws, which NY and a few other states follow), or if all manual tranny cars are burdened with it. As with everything else, I've gotten used to it, but it was a little strange at first.


    Welcome to the club, lefthandman! Zoom-zoom!!
  • sstrz1sstrz1 Posts: 28
    Your comment about the wipers caught my attention....the 1st thing I noticed when I took delivery was that they are flimsy (it started raining the moment I pulled off the lot)- did you replace them with the same wipers?- any change?




  • Thanks for the comments & greeting, mz6greyghost! The slight clutch vibration I've noticed only happens backing out of my garage in the early a.m. on cold mornings (temp. below approx. 20 degrees F). I hope you're right and it doesn't worsen and/or develop into a major problem. The 231,000 miles on the '87 VW were all on the original clutch (if you can believe it!), so it's not as though I'm unfamiliar with a manual tranny and proper clutch operation.


    I also considered steel wheels but decided to spend the extra bucks on some alloy rims for the winter tires since I tend to keep vehicles quite awhile (15 years for the VW). The snows I bought are Yokohama IG10 Ice Guards, similar in tread design to Bridgestone Blizzaks. They're relatively quiet and smooth-riding considering the aggressive tread design, and they do really well in the snow and ice here (Colorado).


    Regarding the wiper comments, I replaced the original equipment wipers with some winter blades from CarQuest (their brand) and have been much happier with the wiper action ever since, if that helps. Zoom-zoom!
  • fitguyfitguy Posts: 222

    I'm amazed your only getting 15-17 mpg, I've never got less than 20, even with some enthusiastic driving. Do you drive it hard most of the time?
  • mz6greyghost - The split-second increased engine revs you refer to between shifts may be, as you surmised, due to California & certain New England-state emissions requirements. I haven't noticed that happening with my Mazda6 here in Colorado.


    sstrz1 - I second fitguy's comments - my mileage has averaged just above 26 mpg, combined city/highway driving in the first 1,000 miles (odometer had 4 miles on it when I took possession of the car). But I haven't been romping on the accelerator during the engine break-in period either. My Mazda6 has the V6 and 5-speed manual tranny.
  • sstrz1sstrz1 Posts: 28
    I think we have my mileage comments confused with someone else' my mileage isn't that poor (15-17)- I calculate it next week (I believe it is btw 22-25)...again, my expection is not high, because I am often driving btw 70-85 mph on the NJ Turnpike each I do use my "manual" shift often to pass, including dropping it to 4th gear when going over 65mph.
  • slickdogslickdog Posts: 225
    The engine in my wagon acts differently on the 4-5 shift. When the engine isn't fully warmed up, the tach drops immediately after I disengage the clutch, just like it does for all the other shifts. When it's warmed up, it does one of two things. If I start to release the accelerator just before disengaging the clutch, the tach floats for a second or two before dropping. If I release the accelerator and clutch simultaneously, the tach spikes, floats for a second or two, then drops. Judging by the sound and feel of the car, the tach seems to represent the changes in engine speed fairly accurately, so this is not just the result of a flaky tach.


    This only occurs during the 4-5 shift. On every other shift the engine speed drops almost immediately after the clutch is released. I'm not sure why the engine would not behave this way for just the 4-5 shift, any ideas? Do any of you experience the same behavior? I'm getting used to this by now, but what I don't like about it is that if I'm not paying enough attention to time the engagement of my clutch just right, it slips too much. In my opinion, the 4-5 shift should be the easiest, not the most difficult!
  • fitguyfitguy Posts: 222
    You're right- it was another post. I often brouse the forum while working at the computer and get distracted. I was very close to buying a G35X (and spending 9K more than the Mazda) but after reading about the awful gas mileage (15-16) on premium, plus other issues people were having with the G, I decided against it. That extra 9K is paying for a family trip to Disney next month, with lots leftover! Thanks, Mazda!
  • sstrz1sstrz1 Posts: 28
    Glad to hear your purchase of a 6...I walked away from an '01 Saab, and was "worried" about not having a European sedan- call me a snob I guess!...I didn't feel like spending $30k+ again due to the high mileage I put on my car (30k/ year) plus 2 kids and my wife's $35k recent car purchase.


    For the money- I am very pleased w/ my feels "richer" than it is...though I like the exterior appearance, I wish it was "toned down" some...looks a little too young- (can't believe I said that- I must be getting old!)


    Good luck w/ your purchase.
  • fitguyfitguy Posts: 222
    Browse the Volvo V40 forum if you would like to experience brand snobbery- all kinds of rationalizations as to why you should spend thousands more for a Mazda 3 with a Volvo badge!

    I was also a little concerned with the "too young" image- my 6S is Volcanic Red! My wife paid for a chunk of it so she was allowed to pick the color; I've never owned a red car. Took a while but now I really like it- it stands out in a crowd and definitely turns heads!
  • Be glad you didn't but the 05 Max, traded in my 03 SE (loved it) for an 05 SE. Been in the shop five times for a vibration, they can't fix, with only 1300 miles on it.


    Weighing my options for lemon law, and looking at the 6 5 door as a possible option.
  • In the Dec. 04 issue of Consumer Reports where they rate Wagons and SUV's they say:

    "The Mazda 6's reliability has dropped below average". They don't mention any specific reasons. Anyone know any specific issues? Previous Mazda 6's (thru '03 anyway) got a good reliabilty rating from them. Thanks.
  • hus28hus28 Posts: 8
    I like the look of my 20004 mazda 6 (bought it in December), that is why I choose it over the 05 maxima. But the wheel well issue, the horrible gas mileage I am getting and the poor performance of the windshield wipers is making me wish I went with the Maxima. And worst of all i noticed a chip on my windshield last week and when I started driving the window cracked all the way across the windshield.


    Also it seems like my engine is louder than my previous car. And the ACC is aggravating.


    Keep the maxima. I wish I purchased the maxima instead of the 6. I will at least keep the 6 for a while and see how it is after a few thousand miles.
  • sstrz1sstrz1 Posts: 28
    Sorry to hear about your dissappointment....couple comments:

    1) horrible gas mileage- I am getting 23/ gallon..which is fine by me (I drive approx 30k annually)

    2) wipers- replace the blades and you'll be ok

    3) crack in windshield- it happens, but doesn't make for a bad car

    4) engine noise- what did you use to drive? I had a '01 Saab 9-3, which was much louder than my v6 Mazda

    5) ACC- mine works fine- just press the ACC button, set the temp to 77 degress (as recommended in the manual), ignore the fact that the a/c light is on, and you'll be fine

    6) '05 maxima vs mazda6- if the price of both (same equipment) was the same- I too would have bought a Maxima....but based on my low APR/ $3000 cash back/ near invoice cost....I went with the 6
  • mz6greyghostmz6greyghost Posts: 1,230
    The NHTSA has issued a recall for certain 2004 Mazda6 models. According to the website, it only affects 190 vehicles, so chances are you aren't affected. It has to do with the locking mechanism on the rear seat belts. If you need more information, go to, click "Recalls Search From Office of Defects Investigation (ODI)" found in the middle of the page. For the NHTSA campaign number, type the following: 04V582000. It will give you the details of the recall, as well as numbers to contact Mazda and the NHTSA.


    Good luck...
  • grahambgrahamb Posts: 45
    The "wheel well issue" isn't an issue. I'm on another mazda6 message board with lots more people than this one, with people who have had their cars since they first came out and no one has had a problem with the wheel well.


    THe mileage rating on the 2005 Maxima is 20/28 and for the 2005 Mazda6 is 20/27. hardly a big difference. Obviously in the real world those number vary greatly. If you're getting around 15 mpg it is probably a combination of your driving style and the fact that it is a new engine. After a few thousand miles your numbers will increase.


    What do you find aggrevating about the ACC? I never touch mine. Leave it at 77, as another poster mentioned, and that's it. Maybe nudge it a few degrees one way or another depending on how my passengers feel.


    I believe you said you are from NH...chips can easily turn into large cracks in the cold weather. Nothing to do with the car.


    As for the engine noise, did you not drive the car before you bought it? There is definitely some engine noise when you really get on the gas, but most people think it sounds nice. Maybe if you are hearing that throaty "growl" a lot, it could explain your poor mileage.


    Lastly, the Edmunds TMV on the Maxima seems to be about $7K more than I spent for my "similarly equipped" (obviously that is not possible since the maxima does have some more features and a larger engine) 2004 6S Hatch back in May. The altima is more the direct competitor.
  • suydamsuydam Posts: 1,281
    I would have to agree with grahamb's comments. I dearly love my '01 Maxima but posts on the Maxima boards indicate a lot more owner discontent with the newer Maximas than with the M6 (all versions). I don't have a problem with most of the things that bother the earlier poster except for the gas mileage, which is surprisingly worse than my Maxima even though they're rated the same. I consistently get at least 3-4 more miles per gallon in the Max than in my M6. I am hoping that this will improve as I put more miles on the car-- I only have 3500 miles on it now. Also, I bought the car just as we went into the winter driving season, whereas I got my Maxima originally in the summer when gas mileage is better. Other than the mileage, I love my M6! Just acquired a second dog, and it's a wonderful dog car. I have the wagon with the dog net. I do not allow dogs in my Maxima!
    '14 Buick Encore; '13 Honda Accord EX-L
  • hus28hus28 Posts: 8
    Thanks for your reply


    1) I drive half what you drive (15K) and say about 30% highway and 705% city. I am barely getting to 16 mpg. My 98 maxima was getting around 20 or so.

    2) I know i should replace the wipers but feel like i shouldn't have to on a brand new car. Will probably replace them soon, i can hardly see out the window when it rains or snows.

    3) crack is just luck and it just annoyed me, and has nothing to do with the car.

    4) I has a 98 maxima and comparing the 2 side-by-side the mazda idles louder and the engine is not as responsive as the max. I don't like the lag when I hit the accelerator.

    5) actually the front and rear defrost is what's bothering me. when the rear window is iced up it takes about 10 minutes to defrost it. my maxima was a lot quicker. hopefully the snow and cold weather ends soon.

    6) the 04 mazda 6 was fully loaded (leather, moonroof, 6 cd, etc) and went with the black leather interior on the 6 and looks real nice until it gets dirty. The 05 maxima Se was the base (with the cloth, cd, etc), bigger/better engine. basically the monthly payment would have been the same on both cars.
  • ericzoomericzoom Posts: 213
    I drive half of what you drive(about7.5k)and i get about 20-22 mpg combined C/H. That seems to be about average from what i've been reading in other forums. As far as the wipers go,i agree with you. They sucked pretty bad when i bought my car also. Even getting new refills didn't seem to do much. What i finally did was bend up very slightly the wiper arms and that seem to solve the problem.

    I've learned to live with the lag,just using the manu-mode seems to help alot.

    The new Maxima is a nice car(ugly as hell IMHO),but except what you have and try to overlook some of these common annoyances.
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 6,343
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