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Mazda3 Real World MPG



  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    Please post the shop manual link again - It seems like as much trouble as I have had Mazda should mail be a limited edition leather bound shop manual!

    Any idea how thick the brake pads are when new? Then I could guestimate how many miles I have left on the rear pads.

    Anyone else have the rear pads wearing faster than the front? Seems like with every other car I have ever owned the front brakes wore faster than the rear -
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    The link would not work -
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Works fine for me! Anyone else want to give it a try?

  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    In the interest of squeezing every mile out of my latest tank of exhorbitantly priced gas, I performed a little experiment (aka exercise in self control) on my last tank, and kept myself from zooming as much as I normally do. (It was hard, friends ... VERY hard.) :shades:

    Well, I finally had to fill up again last night (for THIRTY-SIX BUCKS) and the results of my little exercise are in. By keeping the revs down, not racing other cars from traffic lights and generally being more conservative behind the wheel, I managed to squeeze 29.1 mpg out of my 2005 Mazda3 hatch (5-speed) in my mixed-commuting (mostly city/suburban) driving on my most recent tank of gas!

    That's about 2 to 2.5 mpg higher than what I've been getting. Spread over almost 12 gallons of gas at $3 a gallon, that's a savings of about $2.50 per tank for being conservative. But since that's about a week of driving, I'm only saving myself about 10 bucks a month by driving like an old lady.


    BTW, I now have 8,500 miles on my 3, purchased new April 7, 2005.

  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    Works fine for me! Anyone else want to give it a try?

    Bill, the manual opens in several windows for me; one window shows a contents page, another window opens when you select a topic. Thanks Meade for posting the link again.

    What a terrific resource! Another example of how windows makes business transparent. :blush:
  • re: I'm only saving myself about 10 bucks a month by driving like an old lady.

    Thank you for zooming and not driving like an old lady. We appreciate your lack of conservation and thank you for your business.


    - Big $$ Loving Oil Companies
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    You're welcome, fellow Tree Hugger!

    See, pumping a whole 'nother gallon of gas in my car every week keeps me at the pump at least another 20 seconds, keeping me and my harmful ozone-killing voiture de mort off the road that much longer! Hey, we gotta do what we can to save Mother Earth!

    Observation: My car still gets 27 mpg even when I do zoom around. Go express yourself on the GMC Suburban or Hummer discussion where your words might carry more weight than they do among a group of economy car owners.

  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    I got it to open today - yesterday I got the message it may have been moved to another location or soemthing like that.

    I moved this discussion over to problems & solutions - seems to fit better there.
  • poe1poe1 Posts: 8
    i've had my 2005 3-s for about 6 months. On 100% highway driving i get a solid 31 (about 400 miles per tank), and that has been very consistent w/ Ac on medium. In town i started out getting 24ish.

    However, as the dog days of the Houston summer started to come around my AC was on full blast almost all the time. Then I noticed my mpg dropping to around 17ish. This could be deceiving though and here is why...i live literally a mile from work so the car never got to 'cruise' much, it was basically start, accelerate (sometimes quickly), stop. I think that chewed up a lot of gas b/c when i run errands on the weekends i drive more across town and my mileage goes back up. to its 20-24.

    Also, i finally got my windows tinted (limo in back and a shade lighter in its dark). It really helps keep the texas heat out and AC in, so i have noticed that where i use to have it full blast or 3, i can now cruise very comfortably at 1(recirculating). I havent done a milecheck yet, but after this tank of gas i will see what changes there are.

    P.S. I love this car and i never thought i would say that about a compact car.
  • 424 miles, 11.5 gallons, equals 37 mpg. Filled up yesterday. About what I expected from my Mazda3S MT.
  • First mpg result from my brand-new Mazda3s manual transmission:

    25.5 mpg

    Mixed city/highway, probably more city, with the AC running most of the time.
  • ecm56ecm56 Posts: 16
    Just finished the third tankfull of gas (I didn't measure the first tank because it didn't start completely full) - 2005 Mazda 3i manual transmission - 32.48 mpg mostly stop and go suburban driving with the A/C running most of the time. A little over 1000 miles on the car.
    As I recall the last tank was 33.6 but there was some highway driving in there. I still haven't made any highway trips to see how it does on the road.

  • glygly Posts: 12
    ...if you want better fuel economy, get the stick.
    ...I think Mazda claims 5th gear is an overdrive, it's more like a true fifth gear.

    That may have been true in the past (that MTs get better mileage than ATs), but it's not necessarily true today. A lot depends upon the final drive ratio. A number of Japanese auto manufacturers give a higher final drive ratio to MTs than ATs, and this would tend to lower the gas mileage of MTs vis-a-vis ATs. They do this because of cruise control: when going up a hill under cruise control, an AT automatically downshifts; an MT will not, and it will seem to the driver of an MT that his car loses power going up a hill. To counter this complaint, the auto manufacturers give the MT a slightly higher final drive ratio than the AT. And because of torque converter lock-up, there is no slippage in torque converters as there was in the (distant) past.

    For the Mazda3, the final drive ratio for the MT is reported to be 4.105; for the AT, the final drive ratios bracket the MT value: 3.685 (i-model) and 4.416 (s-model). Based on these values alone, I would predict better gas mileage (at constant highway speeds) to ATs in the s-model, and to MTs in the i-model. (I don't put much faith in EPA estimates.)

    Finally, both 4th and 5th gears in the MT are overdrive (output shaft spins faster than the input shaft) although 4th gear is almost (but not quite) 1:1. But 5th gear is very much an overdrive; the 5th gear ratio is 0.755:1.

    I almost bought a Mazda3 this summer. My family was down to one car and I desperately needed something fast. I test drove a Mazda3 and liked it, but in July in my area there was very little to choose from, and I had no idea when the 2006 Mazdas would arrive. I eventually bought another 2005 Japanese car at a good end-of-model year price.

    My principal hesitation about Mazda is that the company is majority owned by Ford (at 33% ownership, Ford is the principal stockholder). The two Mazda engines are derived from the Ford Duratec. I think Ford, like GM, cannot put as much money into R&D as the independent Japanese companies, due to their high union wages and medical benefits paid to their employees and their enormous commitment (pension and medical) to their retirees. I would hate to see 1/3 of my money going to Ford.

    A second point of concern is that Mazda does not have a wide dealer network in the part of the country where I live.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    Interesting. A few questions for you, gly.

    I eventually bought another 2005 Japanese car a 2005 Honda Accord?

    Mazda ... is majority owned by Ford ... The two Mazda engines are derived from the Ford Duratec.
    Ford also exercises control over Volvo and Jaguar. My understanding is that Mazda reworks the engines to their needs, so for example a Focus and Mazda3 deliver different results.

    I think Ford, like GM, cannot put as much money into R&D as the independent Japanese companies, due to their high union wages and medical benefits paid to their employees and their enormous commitment (pension and medical) to their retirees. I would hate to see 1/3 of my money going to Ford.
    My understanding is that the Asian brands, like Toyota and Honda, offer similar wages and benefits to their employees in order to match union settlements. This is the case in Canada but I'm not sure if this is true for the US also. I share your concern about Ford and GM but hope the real problem is solved, product lineup, and not have the blame shifted.

    Mazda does not have a wide dealer network ... where I live.
    Where is that?
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    The two Mazda engines are derived from the Ford Duratec.

    Maybe a little more research would've changed your mind. Here's the truth, from a Mazda tech website:

    In 2004, Ford dropped the development of the 4-cylinder Zetec engine in favor of Mazda's MZR 4-cylinder. Thus, 2005+ Duratec 4 cylinder engines are Mazdas. This includes the 2.0 liter Duratec 20 and 2.3 liter Duratec 23.

    Duratec 23

    The Duratec 23 is a 2.3 L (2261 cc) version of the Mazda-designed Duratec 20. Bore is 87.4 mm and stroke is 94 mm. It has an aluminum engine block with cast iron cylinder liners and aluminum DOHC cylinder heads. It uses SFI fuel injection, has 4 valves per cylinder with VCT and features fracture-split forged powder metal connecting rods and a one-piece cast camshaft.

    The 2.0L and 2.3L Mazda3 engines are called Duratecs (in Ford products; they're called ZZRs in Mazda products) -- but they're designed and built by Mazda for Mazda and Ford applications.

  • Right on the money again. The Duratec 23 was a joint collaboration between Mazda/Ford just as the Tribute/Escape. In other words, a Mazda team from Japan and a Ford team from Detroit butted heads. And just as in the Tribute/Escape, Mazda took the lead in the whole project to replace not only their own 2.0 (Protégé), but also the Ford Zetec with more environmentally friendly (if not more powerful) engines; in fact, they were solely in charge of setting up (charges were shared) the mfg. plant to produce these engines (range, if I remember correctly, was from 1.6 to 2.3 with the potential to go even higher to a 5 in-line).
  • Well, this is a late response to your question about the rear pads, but my 04 mazda 3 with only 3750 miles has thrown off a lot of brake dust in the rear. It is now at the dealer, who, unsurprisingly said that it met specs. But this is very unusual because we all know that the front pads are always the problem before the rear. He is keeping it overnight to see some more tomorrow. I saw some postings a while back from other owners about this.
    BTW, I am lucky to get 25 MPG so far. Mostly hwy with an auto tranny. It is definitely a fun car, and I chose it for impractical reasons!
  • mpg60mpg60 Posts: 71
    I don't understand this obsession with the brake dust. I have a friend who owns a Infinity g-35 and the previous owner of the company i work for recently purchased one of the new beemers and both those cars have just as much or if not more brake dust on their alloy wheels than my 3s. I don't necessarily see this as a problem as other cars in a "premium class" exhibit the same?

    the only problem i see is it is annoying to constantly have to clean the alloy wheels
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    The dust on the rear wheels - although a pain to clean is not the problem - it is the rapid wear of the rear brake pads. I rotated my tires a few days ago - the rear pads are wearing out much faster than the front. I guess that my rear pads will need to be replaced (plus the rear rotors) by the time I hit 20K miles.

    Does replacing rear pads at 20K seem normal?
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