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Mazda CX-9 Problems



  • So far, no good. Dealer says they can't replicate the problem but that the car's system shows a fault. They pulled an advisory from Mazda that shows my VIN is in the range of cars having some other sort of related problem. They may have to replace the transfer case. They will know more tomorrow. They were, however, kind enough to point out that I would likely be needing new tires at my next oil change. They are going to move the front tires to the rear. Sounds to me like this problem might also be causing the tire to wear too much. What do you think?
  • cx9ercx9er Posts: 1
    I am having the exact same problem you describe. I have an 07 CX-9, AWD Grand Touring. I've been very happy with the car, until it started snowing. We had a large snowstorm for the last week (Seattle area), and the car has been totally unusable. It has slid, spun out of control, or gotten stuck anytime it touches the slightest bit of snow or ice. I now can't even get it out of my driveway. When it gets stuck, only one front wheel spins. The AWD doesn't appear to be working at all. I have tried switching off the traction control. I would be very interested to know what you find out at the dealership, and will likely have to bring mine in too, after the spring thaw that is. Please keep us posted!
  • Seems consistent with the report on mazda forums. Also a 2007 and had to have a couple parts replaced to fix the problem.
  • cx9er:
    Glad to know that it was not operator error. Sounds like the same problem and sounds like a new transfer case will probably be in order. Good news was that Mazda 800# (roadside assistance) didn't skip a beat in arranging a flat-bet tow on Saturday in the snow. Going in for the loaner car today. Can you confirm that it was only the front driver-side tire that was spinning and not both front tires? I din't look at the passenger side front tire to see whether or not it was spinning. However, if both front tires had some power, I think that the car would have been at least marginally driveable so I suspect that the psgr side front did not have power. I will keep you posted. Please do same.
  • The design of the TCS system in the CX-9 basically shuts down the acceleration and brakes the engine when TCS is engaged. What this means is that if you are driving in snow and you are going up the slightest incline the car will basically come to a halt. This is severe safety issue with the car and its due to the design of the TCS system. The CX-9 comes with a shut off switch but it automatically re-engages at 9MPH meaning that it doesnt help at all if you are moving up a slight incline. Other cars like Volvo let you shut if off completely when you want or a Honda Civic will let you continue to give it gas and it will continue adjusting the spinning of the wheels which will allow you to keep you momentum if you are going up an incline. I live in the NorthEast and we recently had a small snow storm and i could'nt drive the car, while rear wheel drive cars and pickups were passing me easily. I spoke to my dealer who told me he has heard of the problem but there is no fix in place and gave me the 800 cusotmer Mazda # which told me they could'nt assist me and to call back another dealer. There are two solutions i see, change the automatic engagement from 9MPH to something higher, maybe 40 MPH or allow the system to shut off completely during your drive. Has anyone else come across this? This is a FWD issue only from what i can tell. Any suggestions on what to do next?
  • My wife's 2007 CX-9 has been handling horribly in the snow. The AWD light turns on, flashes, stays on for a bit , then turns off while we drive. We are bringing it in to the dealer for service on Monday. Keep us up to date with the fix for your problem.
  • I live in northern NY in the snow belt and average 120+ inches a year. I learned last winter that the AWD CX9 GT with the 20'' OEM all season tires was unacceptable in any snow condition. Worse than going was trying to stop. After sliding through a couple of intersections with 3"s of packed snow, I imediatly bought 18 Mazda RX8 rims with TPS off eBay and ordered a set of blizak snow tires from the Tire Rack. I hated to spend the $$ but the diference is amazing both going and stoping. All my cars have had snows for the winter and OEM all terains for the rest of the year. Having two sets of tire greatly improves the life of both tires, where as the snows are only mounted DEC through MAR when it is cold and wear is slow and the all terrains are not being worn out by constanlty spinning in the winter conditions trying to get traction. Some other poster summed it up in another thread last year; "If this car is driven in the snow, it is too expensive not to put snow tires on it for basic safety reasons". My FWD jetta is horrible in the snow with OEM tires but I put a set of four snows on it and it imediatly becomes a snow worthy car. The VW has an agressive TCS that can bring it to a halt if not disabled but is no issue with snows due to the gain traction. Sorry for the long winded post but B/L; Winter conditions = Buy 4 Snow tires you'll be amazed and much safer
  • Here's the latest on my uncontrollable in the snow. They are installing a new transfer case as we speak. Never told me exactly what the problem was but I will be looking for some snow to test it out in.

    Here's another question for anyone who has an opinion on this and/or has been following this thread: The tires. The dealer who is fixing the transfer case problem told me that they rotated the tires and when doing it they noted that the tires that they moved from the front to the rear would need replacing shortly. The car has only 20,000 miles (2007 CX-9 Grand Touring AWD). Since the car is an AWD, shouldn't all tires wear somewhat evenly? If the tires are worn down and they are disproportionately worn in the front, couldn't this have been beacause the AWD was not working properly?

  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 570
    I don't think the front tire wear had anything to do with the AWD not working properly. Most of your front tire wear is due to steering and the fact there is a lot more weight on the front of the vehicle. Perhaps the front wheels were slightly out of alignment as well.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    Just came back from Tahoe for a skiing trip. CX9 flew all the way up and down the mountains. What a great tourer even in hilly area! Granted, there was no snow on the ground for the few days I was there. Didn't get to test the AWD on snow. What impressed me most was that I could go up no-so-steep mountain at 6th gear!!! Even at the steepest one, 4-5th gear was good for it.

    On the tires (tyres), they are rated at 260 (UTAQ).
    I would not expect too much life from it.
    I would say, based on my past experience, 25,000 could be normal for the 260 rating.

    As I said, some early 2007 CX9s have transfer case issue. Some owners never get to find out at all. They thought it was normal. From what I read, possibly the dealership mechanics filled in the wrong fliud to the transfer case when they topped off all fluids before delivery. Not sure if that was true or not.
  • I have just bought the 2009 CX9 grand touring and i hear a sound from the rear side like water or fluid as if it is the sound of the fuel in the tank when i very slowly go over steep bumps, have anyone experienced this? if someone can help in this issue i would really appreciate it.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    It is probably gasoline tank sludge.
    It usually happens when the tank is about 70-80% full.
    You can hear it when the music is low and you are moving slowing to a stop or over a bump.
    It happens to many vehicles I owned. Bad tank design, and no easy fix.
  • k1200k1200 Posts: 40
    This definitely can be heard, it is the sound of the fuel in your tank.... almost sounds like a half full plastic jug of water in your back seat. No fix that i have seen.
  • Thank you K1200 and Ceric for the info, i am enjoying the car however the sound is frustrating, i think i will get used to it by time if there is no possible/feasible solution.
  • k1200k1200 Posts: 40
    Its was odd for me when I first heard it, I had just fueled up and I had about 3/4 full tank. I was backing into my driveway when I heard it. I had a half empty jug of washer fluid that I thought was the culprit. But once I removed the jug I still heard it.
    Took a little time to get used to.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    The solution is to turn the music volume up.....
    Just kidding. Gas tank can be better designed to cancel the sludging. This will be my daughter's next science project..... :)
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    It sounds more like sloshing than sludging to me. The original Honda Odysseys had a similar problem that most people just got used to as background noise. The gas tank in that van was pretty flat to accommodate the magic seats. Honda then put some baffles in the tank in later years to help deaden the noise.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    Yes, sloshing, not sludge. What was I thinking....?!
  • I have the same problem with the new 2008 CX-9. It was drifting to the right, after 3 times to the dealer, now it is drifting to the left and the right. It's not a tire issue. It's not an alignment issue either. Any progress on yours?
  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15
    I've experienced fairly significant (and audible) engine knock in our 2008 GT CX-9. It happens when going up a hill in the morning, as well as when trying to accelerate when in a lower gear.

    This is a change in performance by our CX-9 as we did not notice this engine knock for the first few months we have owned the vehicle. Furthermore, we have two other vehicles that have no problems making up the hill with no engine knock -- both with over 100,000 miles on them. Last, we live in the South and our CX-9 is garage kept, so we have very little issue with the cold.

    I dropped it off at my dealership yesterday, and I was told the same problem was reported by another 2008 CX-9 owner and that Mazda told the dealership to have all customers use premium gas. This is in conflict with information in the owner's manual.

    Anyone else with similar problems? Our car has roughly 9000 miles on it and was purchased in June 2008.

    Thanks to those that posted the TSB thread. I reviewed it, and it appears the engine knock has not been acknowledged. I did notice the recent loss of power TSB, which I found interesting.

    Any and all help appreciated. I suspect we are not an isolated case. I will post an update once we get the CX-9 back from the service department of our dealership regarding the prognosis.
  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15
    Dealer called back.

    I was told the knock we heard was brake booster connects rattling and there has been a release by Mazda on this particular problem. The repair was made. We will pick up the vehicle later today. Hopefully this fixes the problem.

    Also, he apologized for the premium gas requirement comment. Evidently he is a new employee and not as familiar with the CX-9. He said a particular model on the CX-7 requires premium gas, and he confused the issue.
  • ewsncewsnc Posts: 14
    After testing several SUV's, CX-9 Touring and GT came out to be on the top. But the reported poor snow performance concerns me since I live in the northeast. Is this an issue related to tires or to the design / engineering of the vehicle? Doesn't anyone know if the 09 models have addressed this issue?
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    It is the tires, I can assure you.
    The Mazda's Active Torque-split AWD is better than Highlander/Pilot. It senses torque sudden change and starts to transfer torque to the rear. In contrast, Highlander/Pilot sense torque loss then starts to send torque. In the case of Pilot, it can send torque to the rear in case of hard acceleration (and maybe new Highlander as well, I am not sure). Mazda has that also.
    It is called Power-take-off mode....

    Bridgestone Dueler H/L 400 is good summer/wet tire, but not good at all on snow. Calling it all-season is a "crime", in my opinion.
    If you have concerns, have the dealer change out the tires
    I recommend
    Yoko Parada Spec-X
    Check for review.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092

    My guess is that Bridgestone Dueler H/L 400 is not on that CX9.
    Put snow tires on CX9 if you live in places like that.
  • gahogsgahogs Posts: 15
    Follow-up to ENGINE KNOCK (replying to my post on 17 Feb).

    We did receive the vehicle back; however, the problem was not fixed. The engine knock is the same as always. The vehicle only has 9,000 miles on it.

    As for the noise, it is not a rattling or clanging noise as one may suspect when first hearing the problem may be a brake booster connect. I was suspicious when they said it was a simple brake booster connect problem; however, I did want to give them an opportunity to correct the reported problem. The noise is distinctly engine knock coming from the cylinders (further supported by you only hearing it when accelerating). Again, the same dealership reported another CX-9 was turned in the previous week with the same complaint. I do not expect these would be isolated cases. Engine knock is not good news and can prematurely wear in engine.

    We live in a fairly hilly terrain, and the car will exhibit the engine knock going up a hill (particularly when the engine is cold). It will also experience engine knock when you attempt to accelerate in too low of a gear (i.e. transmission is in "5" when it feels like it should be in "4" or even "3"). Again, we have two other vehicles, neither of which has any problem with engine knock regardless if the vehicle is cold or not. Ironically, both of these vehicles have over 100,000 miles on them each (one V6 automatic; the other a 4 cylinder automatic).

    Anyone else notice a similar problem?

    I will take it back to the dealership to be looked at again.
  • nxs138nxs138 Posts: 481
    We live in Pittsburgh and have had no issues driving in the snow with our 2008 GT. My wife is the main driver, and she feels confident driving it in snow, much more so than her previous car (which was FWD).

    I find that the tires are okay, they are probably tuned for performance and thus you give up a bit of winter grip. But we haven't had any issues going up and down the myriad of hills that is Pittsburgh! The AWD system works just as well as the one I had in my Audi, and gets the car moving quickly. The stability control works well in preventing fishtailing in the snow. In comparison, my Mazdaspeed 3 slides all over the place, but this is mostly due to torque steer! The CX-9 is much more stable than the 3.....ah well.
  • Have you tried filling up with premium gas, 92+ octane to see if the knock noise you hear is reduced? If it's truly knocking, then higher octane fuel should reduce/eliminate it. I'm not saying this is the solution, but it may help you pinpoint the problem more.
  • eroc2eroc2 Posts: 4
    Every time I ride on a rough road - there is a crackling noise coming from the drivers side passanger in the vicinity of the post where the air bag is located. Has anyone had this experience
  • I've experienced what I'll call a rattle from the passenger seat area, when there is no passenger in the seat. I found that the metel seat belt clip (the male clip on the belt) was vibrating -rattling against the side of the passenger seat. To further pin point if this was the source, I engaged the seat belt. The rattle stopped. I have not detected any other rattles from this area since, but I've only had the CX9 for a few weeks. I'm still listening and learning all of it's quirks. Another writer spoke of the sloshing sound of the gas in the fuel tank. I've also expericed this sound. For what it's worth, I find issues like these to be minor inconveniences. The CX9 is a fantastic SUV and great value for the features and performance it offers!
  • eroc2eroc2 Posts: 4
    Thanks I will try it
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