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Honda Civic vs Mazda3



  • mrblonde49mrblonde49 Posts: 626
    Those that happen to be the lucky ones can never understand what those unfortunate souls have to go through unless they experience it for themselves. And sometimes, people are so blinded that they can't see what may be wrong with their car even if a mechanic told them; while other times, positive comments or posts are "actually "plants" or moles from the dealership or car manufacturer. "

    I'm sure there are negative plants by competitors as well. Or hadn't you thought of that?

    "If you like to gamble and be a risk taker then go for the Mazda. "

    It's a reliable car, according to almost all sources. You got a bad one. All car companies have them
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    Good point -

    what I was really asking Honda to do is produce a Civic with an automatic & a little more power under the hood.

    I was looking ahead at the 2007 RSX - but just read that Acura has killed it -

    Too bad Honda can't just put the 2. L from the Accord in the Civic - the extra weight would be a negative - but seems like the extra power would more than make up fit it.
  • aviboy97aviboy97 Posts: 3,159
    In comparison to the other Japanese auto makers, I would say it probably is the worst Japanese auto maker.

    So, you would put Isuzu, Suzuki, Mitsubishi, and Nissan ahead of Mazda? I would have to disagree.

    To remain on topic, this is a Mazda3 forum, not the full Mazda line. The Mazda3 is a top ranked vehicle in reliability and customer satisfaction. This is fact. Yes, there will be people to experience problems, as every car has them. Also, I see some have had issues with Mazda customer support. I don't think that EVERY person that has ever delt with Honda customer service has NEVER had a complaint.

    Mazda just doesn't care

    Everyone has a different experience. I have heard great thing's. And like you and zbill, I have heard bad.
  • ncgullncgull Posts: 13
    Here I was, thinking that the Civic Coupe EX was THE car for me, and had put the fondness and excitment I'd had for the Mazda 3 5-door (because it reminded me so much of my '73 Gremlin) right out of the running...and now all THIS discussion!!

    I HAVE to buy a new car in the next two weeks, and this is killin' me. I am so scared of making a big mistake. The info here and on the Honda Civic Coupe board is scaring me to pieces, but then I read about the stalling out problems with the Mazda...I have no $$$ to spare when it comes to buying a car (trading it in after a year or so, etc.), and my boss has no more patience with my "car problems" after constantly being out of work dealing with my '98 Malibu LS.

    How in the WORLD is anyone supposed to make a decision with all this pro-and-con chatter going on? HOW is this really helping people like me who are in a one-(modest)income, no-guys-to-depend-on situation and are looking for REAL advice and guidance on buying a NEW car?

    I'm gonna cry now...excuse me....
    :cry: :confuse:
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    Take a deep breath, maybe splash some cold water on your face. Feel better?

    First, to make a decision like this you have to keep your wits about you. Crying won't help. You seem to hold reliability above everything else in your car buying decision. Have you done research on the most reliable small cars, e.g. Consumer Reports and/or the J.D. Power long-term reliability studies? If so you know that historically the Civic, Corolla, and Impreza (if you need AWD) have been very reliable, with the Mazda3 and Scions not far behind. One thing to consider is that the Civic is an all-new model, and new models (even Hondas) typically have some first-year glitches. The Corolla, Mazda3, Impreza, and Scions are proven designs. So is the Honda Fit, which just became available in the U.S. but has been sold around the world for five years. If you like hatchbacks, that is another car to check out. Any of those cars have a high probability of being reliable. Of course, there are lemons, and the Civic is in its first year, but the odds are in your favor with those small cars.

    After you have narrowed the list down to 2-3 (which it appears you have), you need to drive the cars and think about all the other aspects of owning them. Are they comfortable for you and passengers? Do you like how they handle, and their performance? How is the ride--is it smooth enough for you? How is the noise level? How easy are the controls to use? How well does the A/C work (if you live in a hot climate)? How important is fuel economy to you--do a few more mpg matter? How's the cargo space, and how easy is it to load/unload cargo? Does the car have features that are important to you, whether it's a high-zoot stereo or moonroof or leather interior?

    Once you've driven the cars and answered these questions, you should have an answer as to which car to buy. Hopefully you'll have more than one option, then you can go to dealers to negotiate and have an alternative if you can't find a good deal (e.g., discounts on Civics seem to be hard to find right now).
  • ncgullncgull Posts: 13
    Thanks, backy...yep, the cold water helped (along with a bottle of Bass...), but won't solve my problem. I'm an online CR subscriber, but the Coupe EX isn't listed... I've done LOTS of homework, and thought I'd settled on the Civic Coupe until reading all the posts in Edmunds -- Honda & Mazda boards.

    I've had the Mazda3 as a rental several times and LOVED it, but at the time, wasn't in the market to buy a new car. So, it was the first car I thought of buying when I found out my Malibu was DOA, but the Ford connection really bothers me. Minor, but irritating, things include the orange dashboard lighting (gross), and there's no iPod connection.

    I tend to be conservative with my purchases these days after some emotional buys that resulted in a :lemon: (i.e, an '83 Firebird). I'll never forget the Pontiac salesmen LAUGHING at me when I brought it back complaining that the front seats were not latched down (you'd come to a stop and the entire back of the seat would move with you), finding a rusted screw driver in the engine compartment, and breaking down on the New Jersey Turnpike over July 4th because the car was wired through the fan which slowly cut the wiring in half...). I sold the car as quickly as I could (having it only about three months.) Buying a new car terrifies me -- and then hearing how Mazda isn't supportive, well, that harkens back to the Firebird disaster....

    Test-driving and saying, "Oh yeah, I love the way this car looks and drives" really doesn't cut it for me. It's the long term dependability and service issues I'm concerned about...and after reading all these posts, I feel like moving into the city and riding the h*ll with a car....

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    Well, you can save a ton of money by taking the bus.

    Notice I said do the research first, narrow down your choices, then take the cars for a drive. If you are going to over-analyze this (e.g. the "Ford connection"), it's probably best to get something ultra-reliable like a Corolla. Not as much fun to drive as a Mazda3, or even a Civic coupe, but maybe the most reliable small car out there right now. And there are good deals on Corollas now. Great fuel economy, also, and decent crash test results with the side airbags.

    BTW, keep in mind that you are buying a car that happens has a sound system. Whether a car has a built-in iPod connection should be far down your list of priorities, since you can get a number of low-cost iPod connectors at your local electronics store.

    You say you loved driving the Mazda3. Did you love driving the Civic coupe also? If not, that should tell you something. If so, you have some options--which is a good thing. If a salesperson senses you want only one car, watch out.

    If you think the Mazda3's orange dashboard lighting is gross and you won't be able to get past that, better to steer clear of the Mazda3 then rue the day you bought it every time you look at the gauges.
  • ncgullncgull Posts: 13
    backy..I'm CONFUSED, not STUPID! LOL! Yes, state the obvious, but I truly appreciate your time and effort in addressing my questions and concerns. Wish I had someone like you to go car-shopping with!
  • ex_tdierex_tdier Posts: 273
    In this situation, where you aren't sure of the car's reliabilty. There is only one real solution and I have been in your place. I would lease whichever car you prefer. I would go with the Civic. If it turns out to be a dud or lemon, your fine. If it's reliable without many problems, you can always buy it at the end of your lease.

    Personally, I would stay away from Mazda. Customer service is awful and I no longer recommend Mazda. Maybe in a few years they [Mazda] will improve like VW has, kinda. But, in all likelihood, they probably won't.
  • jimmyt2jimmyt2 Posts: 2
    My friend Got a Mazda 3 and it doesn't run. Good job Mazda.
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    I am not sure how you would be better off if you leased a lemon car VS buy it. If your leased lemon car will not start - or needs to go in for warranty work every month you still need to find a way to get to work.

    A lease can even be MORE difficult to get out from under (compared to a loan). By more difficult I mean more expensive - early termination fees/penalties - at a minimum - some leasing companies will just say no early terminations - all payments must be made. Plus lets not forget that MOST of the time a lease will cost more than a loan.

    Find a dealership that offers a free rental car if your car is in the shop FOR ANY REASON.

    The bottom line is - You pay your money - you take your chances -
  • waygrabowwaygrabow Posts: 209
    Does this indecision extend to other phases of your life? Some risk is inherent; it is part of the adventure. Most of the things you read here are anecdotal; take it for what it is worth. I really don't care if you buy the same car I like. If it gets too popular there will be no individuality in owning one, and prices will go up. I just know that after 31,000 miles, I have no regrets.
  • mongoose65mongoose65 Posts: 31
    Excellent points, Z. Leasing companies are notoriously IN-flexible!! Mazda has a deal with Enterprise and offers free rentals a well as free roadside assistance. I know they don't want to come up with money out of their own pocket so to me it is a small sign of faith in their own cars' reliabiltity. So far my 3 runs great, looks great and the mileage is doing as well as I expected.

    Some of the posts here are so outrageous. "Get better like VW?!?!" VW has gone so far down in recent years it makes people's head spin! Mexican made VW's have been problematic and it's well documented. In all fairness, so have Mazda 6's since Mexican production started. So have the Hondas since American production.

    To the original poster, everyone gets anxiety at buying a new car (unless you've got crazy money). Once again, the civic and mazda3 are both GREAT cars. Lemons happen, they are complicated machines. Get the one you like best and expect problems may occur. Beamers, Lexus' and Mercedes break down too. If you really want reliability above all else, get a 1965 Dodge Dart with a slant 6 engine and AM radio!
  • ncgullncgull Posts: 13
    Not when it comes to telling you where to get off. That's an easy decision.
  • ncgullncgull Posts: 13
    I don't have the money to put down for a lease. What is it -- $2k or something? HAH!

    Sorry I wore my heart on my sleeve to your hardballs...
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    let's not get personal here, please.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    Excellent points, Backy.

    It is not unusual in a forum to hear competing views. If some feel strongly about an issue it may sound as if this were the opinion of all. But as we see here, there are others with different experiences. One opinion does not negate another.

    Before making a decision I try to find out as much as I can by reading forums, consulting published comparisons, talking to colleagues and doing my own "testing". After four years, I'm still happy with my decision.
  • cticti Posts: 134
    You don't have to put money down on a lease. A security deposit should be all you need. Typically the money down on a lease is so that the vehicle can be advertised for a certain amount per month.

    If you don't have 2K to put as a down payment on a lease, you probably shouldn't be buying (or leasing)a new car. Now, I'm not saying you HAVE to have a down payment - maybe the interest rate is ridiculously low - but you should at least have the money.

    The Civic and 3 are definitely the best compacts out there. I went with a 3 hatch over the Civic because it was fun to drive, had 5 doors, and came with more features that the Civic didn't offer. It's been 15 months and I still smile every time I get into it.

    I have a 2000 Kia Sephia that I haven't driven in a year. I took it to the repair shop to get fixed before I sell it. What a piece of junk - and that was AFTER it was fixed.
  • richmlrichml Posts: 156
    More posts at various Mazda forums.

    Yes - discussion of AC on the "other" forum is even more dominated by the same select group of posters with weak AC who post here. Seems like you're referencing your own posts.

    Have you thought of trading your 3 in for a vehicle that is in no way associated with Ford? I know z71bill said he was looking at Hondas awhile back.
  • ex_tdierex_tdier Posts: 273
    Seems like you're affiliated with Mazda indirectly or directly. Either that, or your're in denial. :lemon:
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