Mazda 3 Transmission Problems



  • natwalnatwal Member Posts: 1
    Hi there. I have a 2008 Mazda 3 4 dr. automatic and my AT light came on today. Luckily I was within a half kilometer from a Mazda dealership. They have decided to replace my transmission. Luckily I am still under warranty.
  • boogaliuboogaliu Member Posts: 2
    My daughters Mazda 3 needs a new automatic transmission and it only has 45000 miles... Unlucky for us as the warranty expired. This automatic transmission also has a manual mode. Her boyfriend would only drive it in manual mode... could this be the cause of the transmission dying??
    Dealership wants $5000 to fix but felt bad that it died so early that they gave us a deal for $3500. Can anyone suggest a reliable transmission shop in the San Jose,Ca area?
  • igozoomzoomigozoomzoom Waleska, GeorgiaMember Posts: 801
    There is a shop in Santa Clara (I think that's near San Jose, right?) called Rotorsport- LINK. According to several users on other Mazda3 forums, it's a reputable, honest shop. I'd definitely get a quote from them.

    Another option, if you're trying to repair it as inexpensively as possible, is to find a used transmission on eBay. Just search "Mazda3 transmission" and you'll find quite a few. I know mechanics who would install one for $200 or could end up spending less than $1000 if you're lucky! :)

    Best of luck!
    2015.5 Volvo S60 T6 Drive-E Platinum, 2012 Mazda CX-9 GT
  • boogaliuboogaliu Member Posts: 2
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    My daughters Mazda 3 needs a new automatic transmission and it only has 45000 miles... Unlucky for us as the warranty expired. This automatic transmission also has a manual mode. Her boyfriend would only drive it in manual mode... could this be the cause of the transmission dying??

    An automatic transmission should last longer than 45K miles; at least double that distance. 2004 was the first year for the new 2.3 L Mazda3 engine, so you may want to do some research on whether others have had similar problems with their automatics (Consumer Reports may be one place to look). Have you raised the issue with the dealer and with the manufacturer, Mazda?

    Driving it in manual mode should be okay. I wonder if the way it was driven in manual is the real source of the problem. Does her boyfriend have a history of burning out engines?
  • jzigjzig Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2005 Mazda with 38,000 miles on it and the dealership told me it needs a new transmission, four dates out of warranty. Wished I had checked out this site before I decided to buy a mazda. Because 5000.00 is a lot of money for the replacement.
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    2005 Mazda with 38,000 miles ... needs a new transmission ... out of warranty.

    Did you buy the car in 2005 or 2004? I thought the expiry date for major components was 5 years.

    How and when was the problem originally identified?

    Were there any warning signs of the transmission problem identified in previous service visits?

    Do you have an automatic or manual transmission?

    Do you have a long relationship with the dealership?

    Was most of the work done on your car done by the dealership?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Member Posts: 3,855
    Prior to 2007 model year Mazda warranty was 4 years for everything. For 2007 or later it is 5 years on power train, 3 years on everything else.
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    Prior to 2007 model year Mazda warranty was 4 years for everything. For 2007 or later it is 5 years on power train, 3 years on everything else

    Interesting, I wonder if it's different in the US and Canada. My 2002 Mazda Protege5 had a 5 year limited powertrain warranty (in Canada). Also, googling of "mazda warranty" shows a PDF from penneymazda (in Canada) of the same 5 year Mazda warranty for 2005 vehicles.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Member Posts: 3,855
    Must have been different in Canada. I found a reference to the 4 year for 2005:
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    Thanks for the link to

    I checked the reference for my car, 2002 Mazda Protege5, and the site lists 3 years/50,000 miles for both the Basic Warranty and the Drivetrain Warranty. That is not the warranty I received when I purchased my car (I had 5 years on my Powertrain Warranty). The warranties must be specific to each area.

    Here is an excerpt of what Mazda Canada has on its website under Powertrain Warranty:

    "All Mazda vehicles except B-Series and 2001 to 2006 Tribute.
    Warranty Period: The warranty period starts upon expiration of the New Vehicle 36 month/80,000 km Limited Warranty and ends at 60 months from the earlier date of either retail delivery or first use of the Mazda Vehicle, or at the time the Mazda Vehicle has been driven 100,000 km, whichever comes first."
  • gobluewrigleygobluewrigley Member Posts: 1
    My husband has a 2008 Mazda 3 hatchback and was just rear-ended by another driver which caused minor damage to the rear bumper. Just after the accident he also noticed the clutch wasn't engaging properly.
    He took the car in to have it looked at and have the body damage fixed. The dealership just called to say that he needs a new clutch for $1500.
    Is it possible that the clutch was somehow damaged in the accident? Is it possible he's worn out the clutch at 17,000 miles and it's just a coincidence that it happened the same time as the accident? Will they be able to tell the difference between a worn and an accident damaged clutch?
  • jetawayjetaway Member Posts: 14
    A clutch with 17,000 miles should be covered under warranty unless they can show that the clutch was damaged by the accident or was abused by the driver.If it was from the accident collision insurance should cover it.You have to be a pretty terrible driver to burn up a clutch in that many miles.A properly used clutch should last 100,000 or more
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Member Posts: 3,855
    I'd think the clutch is considered to be a wear item and is probably not covered by warranty at 17K mi, just like brakes wearing out would not be covered. That is assuming that the problem is that the clutch is simply worn out.
  • zoomzoombustzoomzoombust Member Posts: 1
    I own a 05 Mazda 3 2.3L too and just had to replace my transmission. I do not believe it has anything to do with the way the tiptronic or manual setting is used. I barely ever used that setting and I treat my car very well. The transmissions were not made to last and the dealerships do not know much about them.
    After I hit 31,000 I started to experience problems from 1st to 2nd gear. The dealership ignored my problem and could not witness the same thing. The problem continued and I went back to the dealership but their only suggestion was to get a fluid flush and said the fluid was a bit low. The next day I went to a transmission specific shop recommended to me and they told me that I had a leak and that Mazda would probably cover something like this so early on. So I went back to the dealership to point out my leak that went undetected a few days earlier. Now at 35,000 Mazda covered a new front axle and the dealership told me that it would probably not be long before the transmission would go so I should consider buying an extended warranty. After driving 700 miles on it back home I could not even reverse without my transmission acting up. I had no choice but to leave my car at the dealership for a few weeks before finally getting Mazda's assistance on the vehicle. I was rejected by them twice for assistance but gained sympathy from the GM at the dealership in my hometown.
    To be honest, I feel very used by this corporation being that I just got out of school and had to put over $2,000 into a fairly new car, including service that did not cure my transmission issues. I filed with Better Businesses and nothing came of it. However, I'd be willing to file a complaint with you if you would like because this is just ridiculous. A transmission and engine should be warranted for 50k.
  • okennyokenny Member Posts: 1
    Has anyone else experienced this? My 2006 manual Mazda3 has been surging. Of course, it is 2000 miles out of its warranty. It seems to happen most when I am decelerating and have my foot in on the clutch. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn’t. Usually I barely notice it but the other day it was very dramatic. My fiancée has also noticed it, so I’m not crazy, something is going on. Took it to the mechanic around the corner and he couldn’t find anything wrong with it and suspects there may be an issue with the cars computer. Any ideas on what may be going on or has anyone else had their car do something similar?
  • nozoomzoom4menozoomzoom4me Member Posts: 4
    I own a 2004 Mazda 3 (5 door). I purchased the car with 55,000 miles on it and I'm only the second owner. I've been driving it for 6 months (put 8,000 miles on it, total of 63,000 miles now). And suddenly a week ago (out of nowhere), the transmission fails to stay in fourth gear and goes back down to third. And it also would shudder/shake when going into reverse. I immediately brought it in since I know what those signs could mean....In the 6 months I had it, it NEVER did anything like that (4,000 of those miles were highway driving on road trips). I bought this car and spent a decent amount of money on it because I was tired of having crappy cars that couldn't hold up. Apparently I should have down more extensive research on this model/year of mazda 3 because this seems to be happening a lot. I do not abuse the car and have rarely gotten to enjoy my beautiful mazda hatchback. Took it to the dealership today and said it would cost $4000!! No way. I am not sure as of today if my warranty covers the transmission. I have to get some second opinions. Just wanted to share and say I am in the same boat.
  • lilace82lilace82 Member Posts: 3
    I hope someone can point me in the right direction, I own at 2004 Mazda 3 and at 35,000 mile the transmission went, this was covered under the factory warranty. Now I’m at 67,000 miles and yesterday I tried to back up out of my driveway and there is no reverse! Of course my extended warranty expired on 5/9/09. 5 months ago! My dealer went out of business so I called another Mazda dealer who told me to contact Mazda directly. They were absolutely no help at all, they have guide lines to follow for "out of warranty assistance and basically told me that my "dealer relationship" was poor- I get my oil changes a another place other than the dealership! It’s only been 31,000 miles I don’t feel that should have to replace my transmission again!
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    I know this is no help, but your experience makes me glad I'm allergic to automatic transmissions. ;)

    Let us know how you make out.

    Best regards,
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    ...I called another Mazda dealer who told me to contact Mazda directly. They were absolutely no help at all, they have guide lines to follow for "out of warranty assistance and basically told me that my "dealer relationship" was poor- I get my oil changes a another place other than the dealership! It’s only been 31,000 miles I don’t feel that should have to replace my transmission again!

    That's a shame. It might be tough going getting a second transmission to be paid for by Mazda. To start you'll need to prove you have followed the service schedule (with your service records as proof). Bty the way is this a manual or automatic transmiission?
  • roadburnerroadburner Member Posts: 14,944
    ...your experience makes me glad I'm allergic to automatic transmissions.

    Me too!!!

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2018 330i xDrive

  • lilace82lilace82 Member Posts: 3
    It's an automatic but it has that option to use the manual too ( I never use it) . I have all my receipts from oil changes and it was just in a few months back , before the warranty ran out for a noise the engine was making, they fixed it under the warranty. I drive less than 10 miles to and from work each day; I just can't see having to put another transmission in. I called a transmission place today and I have to get the car there tomorrow morning for them to look at it, but they did suggest that when they replaced the 1st trans that they may not have fixed what caused the problem, they just replaced a bunch of parts. My receipt says replace transmission which a bunch of part numbers listed. It so frustrating.
  • nozoomzoom4menozoomzoom4me Member Posts: 4
    That is really awful. I can't even imagine replacing a second transmission at 67K. This isn't helpful now but I figure I'd say it. I was over at and people were saying they replace their ATF every 5-10K miles. To me this seems unreasonable but I guess because it's a 2004 mazda3 and most transmissions are failing? Anyone else who owns a mazda 3 replace their ATF that often?
  • lilace82lilace82 Member Posts: 3
    Well, took it too a transmission place today and yes the transmission went again! I'm so mad that I'm going to try calling Mazda again when I get home, it never should have went at 35,000 to begin with, but now 31,000 more miles later it goes again! Am I suposed to replace this thing every 30,000 miles!
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    You might want to consider putting a real manual transmission (as opposed to the phony "semi-manual" mode that your current automatic transmission offers) in your car. I don't know how hard the task would be to convert it, but you won't ever have this problem again if you do.
  • nozoomzoom4menozoomzoom4me Member Posts: 4
    Switching out a automatic for a manual seems like it would not be cost-effective to do so. I thought about this too and talked to my friends (who know a heck of a lot more than I do about cars) and my dad (who is a mechanic) about it. If you modify your car in this way and have no way how to keep up with all those modifications, it's pointless. It's easier and cheaper to trade in your car.

    Update: I had to deal with the stealership this morning. Like I said, I bought the car used from them with a 13month/13,000 miles warranty, whichever comes first (I am within these two). The guy actually LIED to me and told me that the warranty only is covered if I brought my car there to get serviced. I became quite harsh with him and said "well, that's crazy" and gave him the example of people traveling on vacations. I go to school in a different state and I'm 7 hours away from the dealership and he better pay for me to get my car towed there. I was being ridiculous, but I was very concerned at this point. When I asked him to fax my warranty to the dealership in the NC (where I go to school), he then proceeded to tell me "I don't know what you mean by a 'warranty.' We only have warranty disclosures and I can't access that without a VIN." I mean, REALLY? I told him that is "completely ridiculous and someone sent me a paper copy two days ago without a VIN." After 20 mins, I finally get transferred to the General Manager who then had the sales rep (who sold me the car 6 months ago) call me and tell me they were going to pay the $4000, not a problem. He also told me the guy I talked to in Service was "talking out of his butt."

    Just wanted to share my experience and I'm sure it's not anywhere close to being done.
  • joannedjoanned Member Posts: 3
    My transmission and alternator need to be replaced on my 2004 Mazda 3 Hatchback (Automatic). This car has 31,000 miles on it. All service has been done at the dealership and is current. Out of warrenty. I never used the manual mode, and drive conservatively. The dealer service dept said $5,400 to replace with a rebuild transmission, I am shocked. They suggested that I buy a new car, and I would be lucky if I got 3,000 for my car as trade in.
    Do I have any recourse on what appears to be a "lemon"? If so, where should I start?
  • theinthein Member Posts: 1
    I am the original owner of this almost three year old car. It has a little over 35,000 miles on it. My clutch burned out on Friday night and the local auto shop just pulled it apart to make sure it wasn't a transmission problem. Per the technician's phone call my clutch is in pieces, beyond normal wear-and-tear. My extended warranty won't cover the clutch because it is a manual transmission, therefore probably a user-error. I've LMAO, but now I'm starting some research. It seems other people have had similar problems at the 30,000 mile marker.

    Has anyone taken any action? Sent pictures to the dealership, etc? I'm going to throw a true fit here, but I'm wondering if anyone has paved a path before me.

    Kind Regards, T
  • ejhayes1ejhayes1 Member Posts: 11
    If it makes you feel better, I'm having clutch problems at 18k miles

    I'm the original owner and have been driving manuals for 20 years. I'm fighting with the dealer to fix it now.

    Never mind the fact that I just replaced the tires...the stock tires on this car last less than 1/2 what they have on other new cars, and I actually drive less aggressive than years ago.

    I think these cars are actually made in China and resold through Japan as Japanese made :) This is my first and last Mazda, back to the other [non-permissible content removed] brands for me next time.
  • joannedjoanned Member Posts: 3
    My transmission and alternator went out at 31,000 miles on my 04 Mazda 3. I agree with your comments about the tires, one set needed replacement at 12,000. I will not buy Mazda again. The dealer would not do anything about my transmission, said to buy a new car from them!
  • ejhayes1ejhayes1 Member Posts: 11
    Well my clutch is fixed. It turns out a ball joint that the clutch level rests on was never lubed in the factory. The joint was dry and rusty when the mechanic opened it up, hence my poor clutch motion.

    Everything is sealed up again and I'm promised it will never be an issue.

    When I had the tires replaced at 17k, I did an alignment. There was a lot out of whack with the alignment and I'm hoping that helps explain the poor tire life somewhat. However, 17k miles is still terrible for stock tires, no matter how you look at it.
  • ejhayes1ejhayes1 Member Posts: 11
    I don't understand why your transmission and alternator weren't covered by warranty. Were you out of the time frame for the warranty? I thought 04's had a 4/50k warranty. Neither of these parts are wear items like a clutch friction plate or brake pads.
  • joannedjoanned Member Posts: 3
    My car is 04, so it is considered 5 years old and thus out of warranty.
  • ejhayes1ejhayes1 Member Posts: 11
    Oh then, that makes sense. You sure don't drive much :)
  • fkwufkwu Member Posts: 9
    How often do I need to change my 2008 Mazda3 transmission fluid? It does not say in the owner's manual.
  • mary228mary228 Member Posts: 1
    My Mazda 3 hatchback makes a clunk that is audible on the drivers side after going in reverse, (consistently at 15 mph) before it shifts to second gear. The dealer says this is the ABS pump. I do not hear the noise when going from park to drive, only after reverse. Am I getting a valid diagnosis?
  • abdmazzaabdmazza Member Posts: 2
    the powertrain warrenty is 5 years to the in service date and 60,000 miles(which means the date the car was picked up and thats when the warrenty begins so if your 3 was bought oct 04 your tranny should be covered. if not raise hell and call head office.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    I think the warranty for 2004 Mazdas was four years, 50,000 miles.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Member Posts: 3,855
    That is correct Mazda formerly had 4 year bumper to bumper and no special power train warranty, I believe this changed to 3 year 36 K mi (and 5 year power train) with the 2007 model year.
  • beekaebeekae Member Posts: 1
    I have a manual 2006 Mazda3 Hatchback with 55,000 miles on it. My transmission stopped working while I was coming down a mountain yesterday. Just heard a "bam" and while down shifting, then it was pretty much like my car was in neutral no matter which gear I had it in.

    Had a Mazda mechanic inspect the car today and he says that my clutch probably broke and that my engine mount is broken as well. Quote was $1100 for replacing clutch and $200 for engine mount USD.

    Unfortunately, my 50,000 mile bumper to bumper warranty just expired. Really disappointed as I expected the transmission to be much stronger than this and I've been driving the car pretty conservatively because I want it to last.

    I'm going to call Mazda customer support on Monday to see if I can get any deal worked out with them.I'm hoping for the best and I'll be sure give you guys updates.
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    I'm going to call Mazda customer support on Monday to see if I can get any deal worked out with them

    Things to consider:
    - Have you followed all the maintenance work recommended in the driver's manual?
    - Was the maintenance done by a Mazda dealership?
    - Do you have documentation for the above?
    - When exactly did your warranty expire?
    - Are you a first time buyer of Mazda or are you a repeat customer?

    Your reasoning could be along the lines that:
    - your car was driven responsibly and serviced by a reputable garage and that its parts should therefore be sound after only 55K and (4?) years of driving.
    - A transmission failing at 55K is unacceptable.
    - If a full repair can not be warrantied, you would consider a compromise of 90% (or whatever you feel is correct).
    - If you are unsatisfied with the compromise, declare that you will never consider another vehicle in this brand and that you will warn family and friends of your case.
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    "- Have you followed all the maintenance work recommended in the driver's manual?"

    What maintenance is called for on the manual transmission? :confuse: I checked the Owner's Manual of my 2009 Mazda3 and there is absolutely zero maintenance called for vis-a-vis the manual transmission in my car.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Member Posts: 3,855
    There may not be any maintenance specified even for an automatic transmission these days. Neither my 2007 Mazda6 nor my wife's 2005 VW call for transmission fluid changes in the maintenance schedule.

    Anyway, it appears that the failure is actually the clutch. Can probably replace that for somewhat less than the $1100 dealer price, by having it done elsewhere.
  • ocean10ocean10 Member Posts: 1

    I will look at the "lemon law". Class action will do it for me. I'm having major problems with my transmission. Worst of all, I'm current unemployed.
  • t_rex_95t_rex_95 Member Posts: 1
    Hi all. I'm new to the forum so bear with me. Last week my wife noticed a puddle of red fluid under my 04 mazda 3 as backed out of the garage. Knowing red meant transmission, I immediately took it in to have it checked out. I have 134K miles on this car but it drives like it did the first day I got it. Well wouldn't you know it, dealership says I need a new $3000 transmission. I was really hoping I could get at least 250k miles out of this car because I babied it to death. It was serviced everytime the sticker in window said to bring it in. I'm not paying $3000 for another transmission. Dealer says I could drive it indefinitely if I keep the trans fluid topped off. I guess another car is in my future. What do you guys think? Have I gotten my monies worth out of this car?
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    I put a brand new transmission in the family ride a couple of years ago that had well over 100,000 miles as well. Why? Because three grand is a heck of a lot cheaper than a new car and at the time I couldn't afford a new car. The good news was that the new tranny was still going strong another 100,000 miles down the road when I traded it in. I say put the new tranny in your Mazda3 and hang in there untill you get to your quarter of a million mile mark.

    FWIW, this particular was the first vehicle my wife and I had ever bought with an automatic transmission (most minivans don't come with the option of a stick), and as if I didn't need another reason to get my Mazda3 with a manual transmission, the failed automatic added to that list. Personally I think it is the rare automatic that can go 250,000 miles and not fail, however, modern manual transmissions rarely even need a clutch by that point.
  • travisw72travisw72 Member Posts: 1
    did anybody figure out what was causing this my 05 just started doing the same thing.
    thanks :mad:
  • nsbio1nsbio1 Member Posts: 75
    I would take the car to a third party transmission shop, who may advise rebuilding your transmission instead or replacing it. This should be cheaper than installing a new one and should let your car make it through 200K mark no problem.
  • ty1989ty1989 Member Posts: 1
    oh my god. did you feel your transmission slipping at some point? like maybe slow acceleration but with really high rpm?
  • autonomousautonomous Member Posts: 1,769
    take the car to a third party transmission shop, who may advise rebuilding your transmission

    Sounds like good advice to me.

    134K miles for a transmission is not bad. And, as others have remarked, $3K for a new transmission to go another 100K miles seems like good value. A rebuilt should be less. On the other hand, a new car may be what you really want! ;) Keep us posted.
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