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Mazda 3 Transmission Problems



  • Update: Jan 25, 2013

    Re: 2012 Mazda 3 Skyactiv Sport Hatchback GS Auto

    Picked up repaired unit today. The problem was a " valve assembly " and that is all that I know. Problem occurred at approximately 2900 km. Out of action for a week, but it was totally painless as my prior posts will indicate. Phoned Mazda hotline right away and a tow truck was there in minutes. Had courtesy car waiting for me etc. It is as if the incident did not even occur since I was never lost for a vehicle and the courtesy car was OK and equipped with Bluetooth etc. It was like the whole thing never even happened. Congratulations to Mazda for keeping the customer happy.
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 393
    Well in one way I am glad that their demo doesn't have the same symptoms ( at least it isn't all of them) but can feel your pain that yours doesn't work the same way. Can they check that the demo has the same version of the software ( ecu programming etc) as yours? Is it a newer build than yours. If not they really need to figure out what is making yours act the way it does. Yes it is good it is under warranty, but from what I understood, it is also a safety concern, and nothing is worth getting into an accident over. I really do hope they can figure this out for you.
  • allyseallyse Posts: 15
    They told me everything is the same, but what i could do is ask them that specific question so that if they dont actually know, theyd have to go make sure. I am gonna take it in tomorrow and just say hey, im not happy, can we trade up into a 13 and im gonna drive it for a WHILE to make sure it drives well. If not, then ill have to see what other options i might have.
  • allyseallyse Posts: 15
    Thats good to hear :) gives me a shred of hope!
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 393
    Well you can check the build date yourself, should be on the door pillar plate ( label?), but the software version they need to check. With the problems you have he they should be trying to make it right. If they won't do the trade up, ask them what are they going to do to make you happier with your current car, if the answer is nothing, then you have a dilemma .
  • allyseallyse Posts: 15
    Oh, okay. I see, thank you. I will speak with them about that. My friend has a 2011 that has had several problems as well. Same dealership and she is just as fed up, but hers is under warranty still also. I will let her know this stuff too. Hers also whistles when she drives a certain speed and she took it in 4 times with the same complaint and they just keep saying they fixed the 'clicking' and she's like thats not even why i brought it in! I wonder if we should go to a different dealer. Cause this is a Mazda/Ford dealer. Maybe theyre just better with fords!
  • scwmcanscwmcan Niagara, CanadaPosts: 393
    Well the dealership can make a big difference, but it doesn't sound like they are exactly blowing you off, by it couldn't hurt at some point to see if you get a different response somewhere else. I am assuming it is the dealership that you bought the car from so I would thik they would be more willing to help make things right ( if they can't fix it), but you never know. It is never a bad thing to get a second opinion mind you. In any case see what they say before going somewhere else.
  • I have an intermittent issue with my transmission. I will be riding along and all of a sudden the transmission slips from 4th to 3rd. It will happen at low speeds and unfortunately at high speeds occasionally. I have to stop the car and sometimes shut it off and it will reset. The check engine light stays illuminated but AT extinguishes. After a day or two the check engine light goes out but then the issue appears again randomly. I changed the tranny fluid as it appeared very dirty. Thankfully nothing alarming in the fluid when i changed it either. After changing it the problem went away for about a week but now the issue is back. Does anyone have any insight to what might be going on? Im guessing a sensor is faulty.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    ... all of a sudden the transmission slips from 4th to 3rd. It will happen at low speeds and unfortunately at high speeds occasionally
    As this is an AT (automatic) how do you know you're in 3rd or 4th? Are you doing the shifting?
  • Good afternoon. I have the same problem with my mazda 3 2005. on the highway this morning I let go of the accelerator and the check engine light on and its At. done it several times that I am actually fix the selenoid or valve body has you find the problem or what to do thank you
  • adamqcadamqc Posts: 1
    I figured i'll start posting around Mazda forums and such to make people aware of issues with the 2012 Sky. I will say to begin, it is an amazing car issues aside. It really is much more fuel efficient than previous Mazda 3's (I owned an 05 2.0L). That being said, 2 months ago I started my car up and the traction light came on. Started to drive, car shuttered and would essentially go "limp". Revs would go up but the car wouldn't move. 2 weeks later, same issue except now I had got the car moving around 10km and it went dead. Motor was on, the car just slowed down with whatever momentum it had going. Put in in manual mode, nothing showed. So turned it off and back on it went away. Same light, just traction. Off to the dealer, they explained they're aware of the issue, took the car gave me a loaner and picked it up the next day with a transmission flush and ECU reset done.

    So here I am March 7, aprox. 2 months later roughly I'm driving 55-60km/hr and exact same issue. Except now i'm in traffic and the car is a floating duck. Its like throwing your car into neutral at 60km/hr. Not fun. Traction light, AT light AND check engine light. I shut it off turned it back on all was good. I figured i'll just drive the 5 mins more to work, leave it and call Mazda roadside. I couldn't even do the 5 mins without it occurring once more so that was that. Called my dealer, got a tow truck dropped it off got a loaner again..and this morning I find out a valve body is in need of replacement. A file was opened with Mazda Canada and i'm without my car for at minimum a week. At least I was given another 2012 Mazda 3 Sky which doesn't seem to have an issues although its brand new with 900 kms while mine has 18 500kms. Sorry to make it so long but I really felt I needed to share this with others and I hope the rest of you have good customer service as i've been treated thus far. It's been a hassle but I have never been without a car. Good luck!
  • Typically but not only when travelling at high speed, the automatic transmission of my 2008 Mazda 3 shifts down from the 5th to the 3rd gear. This causes the car to jerk violently and the controls to illuminate including check engine, no traction and AT. My mechanic could not find a cause of this, and he serviced the transmission by changing the filter and transmission fluid but the problem persists. He suggested that the transmission needs to be rebuilt. Has anyone experienced a similar issue and if so, did you figure out what caused it and how to fix it.

    In the meantime, I filed a complaint with the DOT, and I would encourage everyone dealing with this issue to do the same by calling 1.888.327.4236 or going to
  • maytonmayton Posts: 2
    It is an automatic. Im talking about the display. It is a 4 speed.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    edited March 2013
    ... all of a sudden the transmission slips from 4th to 3rd. It will happen at low speeds and unfortunately at high speeds occasionally

    As this is an AT (automatic) how do you know you're in 3rd or 4th? Are you doing the shifting?

    Im talking about the display. It is a 4 speed.

    In drive the display on my 2011 Mazda3 automatic displays D
    except if one switches to manual M and only then is the gear shown.
  • mainframemainframe Posts: 3
    I have a 2008 Mazda 3 automatic with 28k miles on it. I went to my mechanic complaining of a metal-on-metal hissing sound which was finally diagnosed as the transmission needing to be repaired due to gear damage. I do not drive a lot, and I am a very calm, reasonable driver. I don't drive super fast (if only to keep my fuel efficiency under control).

    The mechanic (who is trusworthy) has 30 or so years experience and took a long time to diagnose the problem because he could not believe that the transmission was in such bad shape for this car with 28k miles on it. He even had 3 other people drive the car because he was so shocked by this case. The mechanic told me to go to Mazda because this is not right. The noise is very faint but I caught it because I have incredibly good hearing (almost to the point of being a curse).

    I'm going to present my problem to the local Mazda dealership (where they do oil changes/full circle inspections and have always complimented me on the great condition of my car). Only today have I read about the Mazda transmission problem that causes jolting but it seems pretty common so I'm wondering if the noise is a precursor to the jolting?

    Did you hear noise before the jolting issue started? If anyone did hear the metal-on-metal hiss before their jolting happened, I'd appreciate the input. My car has not yet had a jolting issue but I am leaving on a long road trip in this car soon and am now nervous about this. Thanks!
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    edited May 2013

    2008 Mazda 3 automatic with 28k miles
    Could you clarify the following?
    - the engine size (2.3L or 2.5L) of your car
    - whether you are the original owner
    - whether the car was ever involved in an accident
  • So after a long struggle of dealing with a very crappy 2004 VW Jetta, my boyfriend and I have decided to trade it in, and find a different car...A Mazda 3 was recommended as one of the best 2013 cars out my boyfriend wants a manual which is not a problem, as all my vehicles were before the current VW, so i can drive stick, but after reading many of the posts here, I am a bit worried...what are your thoughts and so forth? We blindly went into buying the VW, and apparently there were many known problems with the auto tans, and we would have never bought it, if we had known about them ahead of time, I just don't want to end up in the same situation....anyone have any info about the 2012-2013 mazda 3's?
  • mazdaboy2mazdaboy2 Posts: 12
    Remember that it's almost totally the unhappy folks, probably a tiny percentage, that are writing here. If you read only this, you could get a mis-impression. The large majority of buyers that are perfectly satisfied don't come here. For an unbiased opinion, your best bet is - if you are buying a new car, that is $20 well spent. I am a Mazda-3 fan... I have a 2006 with 96K miles on it, and basically I've done nothing to it beyond oil changes. Fun to drive, great MPG. I haven't driven the new model yet, but it's on my radar as a contender for my next car - I just hope they haven't messed it up.
  • mainframemainframe Posts: 3
    It's a 2.3L, I am the second owner (bought from Mazda dealership w/7k miles in 2008), and the car has not been in an accident.

    But my problem is solved. I took it to the Mazda dealership for a second opinion and it was the new brake job I'd had done. The pads, not being Mazda factory parts, were making the noise against the rotors that my local guy had not resurfaced because apparently he didn't think they needed it. I knew I'd heard the sound before on other cars.

    I think my local guy who diagnosed the transmission problem couldn't even hear it since he and his guys drove the car in a very busy area with a lot of background noise but they have Male Answer Syndrome and weren't capable of telling me they didn't know or couldn't hear it. Even the Mazda guys could barely hear it when they drove with me in a very quiet neighborhood. I happen to have exceptional hearing and it was even faint for my ears but a noise, however faint, is still a noise that shouldn't be there.

    So I had Mazda do the rotors and replace the pads with factory ones just to be sure. And the noise is gone. I am back to loving my Mazda. I hadn't had any problems with it before so I was (hopefully understandably) freaked out when I thought it was the transmission.
  • mainframemainframe Posts: 3
    I have a 2008 Mazda 3 that I bought in 2008 w/7k miles on it. I have not had any trouble with it except a false alarm from my mechanic. It turned out to be nothing (thanks to my favorite Mazda dealership). I still trust my Mazda 3 because I have treated it well, kept it maintained, and it has not failed me once in 5 years.

    Anybody can get a lemon, but as long as you do your research and it's what you want, I recommend the Mazda 3. I did tons of research before buying this car and found that the biggest complaints for the model I bought were road noise (which is no worse than any other car under 20k) and the crappy paint quality (which seems to be prevalent below a certain price point). Maybe things have changed with the paint. Either way, I thought it was a fair trade-off for a super reliable car whose look I really liked. I agree with the guy who posted that the majority of what you'll read on forums is from the dissatisfied people because they are the ones who take to the Internet to voice their complaints. Thanks to different sites getting the same reviews, those complaints echo as if they were many voices when they are more likely a handful. I am one happy Mazda owner who did much research and settled on the most reliable car I could find for my budget. If you are inclined toward the Mazda 3, I suggest you check it out and drive it. Good luck in your search!
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