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Mazda3 Hatchback



  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,329
    It's set stiffer than the Elantra sedan, but it's not on par with the Mazda3. Probably fine for most people though.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    Elantra 5-door owners have reported that bikes fit just fine. The hatch opening is actually larger than on more wagon-like 5-doors, and liftover is the same (i.e. opening goes down to the bumper), so loading isn't the problem you imagine it is. I've popped my son's 24" bike in there (cheap bike, heavy frame) with no problem, wheels on.

    Yes, the handling isn't quite as sharp as the Mazda3, but after driving both back-to-back over the same course I don't think most people will see a difference worth $4000+. If you frequently carve mountain canyon roads at high speeds, yes, you might want to pay the extra bucks and get the Mazda3. ;-) Or if you need to carry large boxy loads in the car, and need the more boxy cargo space of the 3.

    Personally I prefer the "fastback" style of the Elantra over 5-doors like the Mazda3 and Spectra5. Hey, if I want a car that looks like a station wagon, I'll buy a station wagon--like the Mazda6.
  • genjigenji Posts: 1
    I feel your pain on A4. For this A4 fan the M3 was about the only econobox that looked and handled well enough to buy. Leather looks ok;keep in mind that seats aren't heated like A4, they might get a tad chilly in CO. My one previous experience with Mazda quality, the old 323, was great. Can't comment on Civic comparison; didn't seriously consider it for reasons mentioned by Modock,pricing approach noted was about what I got as well. Good luck.
  • I've had my SP23 5-door for two weeks now and absolutely love it. Handles great, excellent acceleration, bike fits in the back, the Bose audio is superb.....can't think of one thing that I would change !
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    Could you give us an idea how your Bose compares to the Mazda3 GT hatch's regular audio package which comes with 4 speakers + 2 tweeters?

    I believe the Mazda6 also has the Bose as its top end sound system. Would you know if it's the same system model?
  • The last straw on my A4 is that I need to replace my air conditioner. Four digit cost (all to the left of the decimal point) and they have to remove the entire dash to get to it. I can't imagine that there will be no squeaks and rattles when it is all done. Love the car, but when anything goes wrong it's a trip to the bank.

    Doesn't the SP23 have an option for heated seats? That would be a hard thing to give up. My wife would be unhappy for sure. The Bose would be nice, too. I'd love to squeeze as much luxury as I can out of my econobox purchase. It might make the switch easier.
  • cticti Posts: 134
    The heated seats and Bose aren't an option on the Special Edition. They are what make the SP23 "Special"

  • The SP23 come with heated seat and leather as standard built in.
    I found the leather only ok (my previous VW had better leather) but the car looks sharp.
    The "bun-heater" works great...

    About sound the BOSE system is great. About MP3 you need to buy an add on, that goes from 50 (radio waves) to 250 (ice-link) bucks depending on the quality of the sound you want.

    The Honda SI.. I test drove it. Cannot say about reliability, but it comes with GREAT raccomandation. Everything else... uhm... a bit crispier accelleration, but quite "too simple" dashboard and not as fancy (really looked cheap, compared the SP3). Another thing I did not like is the leather option: no option, unless custom made. Not ideal!
    What else? yeah, it is smaller than the SP23 and not as spiffy.... but hey the Mazda cost $3k more tho.... so you do the math...

    Hope this helps...

  • It's a 2k4 CPO with 15k miles on it. Paid $16k

    Probably high but it's worth it to me for the CPO warranty.

    I was really on the fence about the car. It's not that it wasn't a good car and drove well (I did hear the suspension thump) but it really didn't blow me away. That's probably a good thing as I was able to make a more rational decision about it :)

    The car is has all the options but Xenons, Leather, and Navigation.

    The first thing I'm going to do is throw out those crappy Goodyear Eagles and get decent tires. Probably some Kumho Ecsta 712s or something similar.

    Living in DC I wanted something small, 5-spd, and fun. The Mini was out because those cars are just not reliable and dealer service ratings on Mini dealers are slightly better than those on Soviet Gulags.

    I might have considered a Focus if it was the European Focus but the "new" '05 Focus really does nothing for me.
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  • 3zoom3zoom Posts: 16
    auxilary imput hole? and does anyone have a picture of how the mazda mp3 player look like?

    can i get a aftermarket mp3/cdplayer ?

  • No aux input. They don't want one there I think, since it would compete with their own MP3 solution, really.

    The Mazda MP3 player is a CD based unit, and replaces the CD player or 6 CD changer. Basically, everything different is behind the faceplace, so the only VISIBLE difference is the little thing that sayd "MP3" instead of "6 CD" on the CD changer, or blank with the regular CD player. Oh, and the MP3 player displays ID3 tag info on that information display above. That's about it.

    You CAN get'll need to buy a dash kit, and you'll lose the LCD display unit. Also if you've got wheel-mounted audio controls, they aren't going to work anymore unless someone knows of a special trick that I don't.

    I like my wheel-mounted controls, which is why I'm using the Mazda OEM job, instead of figuring how to wire-up an Olympus m:Robe 100, which would looks SOOO sweet sitting on the Mazda stack :D
  • I'll second npaladin2000's post. A couple of other options... you can get an aftermarket FM modulator and do a line in that way. Currently, no adapter exists to jack in through the tape input, but that may change with time. The digital signals on the adapter will have to be reverse engineered by a third party manufacturer, so it may be a little while (if ever). In the meantime, I'm sticking to the FM transmitter for my iPod.
  • 3zoom3zoom Posts: 16
    Thnks fella for the reply, now if i buy the mazda mp3 player separately...cause they sell it online for around $270...would it be pretty easy to install and take out the stock? since its design for it. Wonder if any of u try that route. its sure much cheaper to buy the unit separately and install your self than have the dealer do it...also u can sell the original.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    But it's good to see that someone still believes in the 3 after the side-impact issue.

  • rshipprshipp Posts: 2
    Hmmm...I went to Best Buy with my brand new '05 Mazda3 5-door Special Edition. The installers took one look at the dash and shook their heads. First of all, they said they weren't aware of a dash kit being available for the '05 Mazda3 yet. And more importantly, they said that a new unit (I was looking at an Alpine, for the integrated iPod functionality) would be unable to utilize the powered subwoofer that comes as part of the Bose sound system that came with the car.

    Does anyone know more about this system and whether there's any way to work around this issue?

  • The official Mazda 3s hatchback car cover - online at is $140.

    Anyone have one? Does it have a hole for the antenna or do you have to remove that all the time?

    Do you like it? I researched the fabric (Stormshield) and found many favorable comments.

    How fast/easy is it to put on and take off?
  • cgr45cgr45 Posts: 33
    Hello everyone. I'm in the market for a new vehicle. I've looked at every car under the sun and I keep coming back to the 3. I drove it a couple of times and I love it. However, I've been reading this forum and other MZ3 forums. I keep reading about various A/C issues and how the Mazda Service Department is not doing a good job at finding a fix for this problem and others.

    I currently have a 2001 Honda Prelude Type SH. I love that car. I've never ever had a problem with it. I would love to keep it but, it's a leased and I also want something cheaper(insurance on the Prelude here in NJ is $2500 a year) and more practical.

    So folks is this a car that I could drive for the next 5-6 years without having to worry about any major issues? Also has the infamous A/C problem been fixed by Mazda?

    Thank you for your time and comments.
  • Well, I can't speak for years, since my Mazda3 is only a year old, but I've only had one problem with mine and that was fixed after delivery (took delivery fast because I had no car and couldn't wait).

    I believe there's people running around driving Proteges without problems for years...I knew 2 people with 1990 Proteges that have had zero problems with them. One was even in an accident and all beat up but it still drives real sweet. :)
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    Depends on what you mean by good & reliable.

    It will most likely be a little better then a Yugo - but not as reliable as a Honda or Toyota.

    I would think it is about even with most cars in this class - Ford Focus, Chevy Cobalt - Dodge whatever.

    I have posted before - The problem with Mazda is with the company - they really do not stand behind the cars that they sell.

    If you want to understand this better look back at the post about the car with the clock that would not keep time. Mazda's position is - it must be off by more than 12 minutes per day before they will fix it. It is the same story with most problems. You are just out of luck.

    Imagine the level of service you would get if you bought a 1988 Yugo - you will not be able to call an 800 number and talk to a customer service rep (because it does not exist) with Mazda you can call and talk to a customer service rep on an 800 number - but what both companies will do to solve your problem is basically the same. Which is NOTHING. If talking to a customer service rep that will do nothing to solve your problem is important to you than Mazda3 is the car for you.
  • tominsdtominsd Posts: 18
    If the quality control on the Mazda 3 is as good as past Proteges, the answer is absolutely yes. The Proteges are as reliable as Toyotas and Hondas - based on my experience and consumer report stats. I had a squeak in my Protege5 that was annoying me. Mazda spent several days looking at the problem (giving me a free loaner) and determined it was the rear brake rotors. They were replaced for free and their diagnosis was correct. The problem was resolved. I have a friend who has a 1995 Protege and it still runs like new - never needed a single repair. This is not unusual with these Proteges.
  • 3zoom3zoom Posts: 16
    hey guys, this site have mud guard i remember some of u are looking for one.

    i didn't order one yet but will soon
  • 3zoom3zoom Posts: 16
    i just wonder is there any lower cost way to protect my M3 from theft...i was thinking the autolock pro...but ppl say is garbage.
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    I am sure many people (well a few people) that bought Yugos also went many miles (ok maybe a few hundred) without any problems.

    If you are one of the few that go 10 years without every having a problem then great - but I started having problems after less than 2 months of ownership - little things like grinding brakes, harsh shifting tranny, completely worthless AC system - & Mazda will not fix my car.

    I think it is important - if you are posting how great Mazda service is to also post WHEN this service was delivered. I think Mazda may have been a decent company 3,4 or 10 years ago - maybe back then they fixed defects in their new cars. But I don't see many posts from MAZDA3 owners about how great they are about fixing they type of problem.

    Anyone had a harsh shifting Mazda3 tranny fixed?

    What about the grinding rear brakes - anyone had that problem fixed in the last 6 months?
  • cgr45cgr45 Posts: 33
    Thanks for all the info. After reading all of the posts on the these forums and some of the replies, I've decided to go with a Honda Accord. I like the Mazda3 much more but I'm not willing to take a chance on this car.

    The Accord is actually a bit out of my price range. I rather pay $50-$60 more a month for peace of mind.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    "I've decided to go with a Honda Accord. I like the Mazda3 much more but I'm not willing to take a chance on this car. The Accord is actually a bit out of my price range. I rather pay $50-$60 more a month for peace of mind."

    Congratulations, Carlos!

    Toyota and Honda are acclaimed for their reliability and the Accord is much sportier looking than the Camry. After sales service, of course, depends on the dealerships involved; I have not heard anything negative about Honda dealerships and you likely have had good service up until now; Toyota dealerships I heard were better than most; Mazda dealerships have to improve theirs.

    In defence of the Mazda3, Consumer Reports recently had rated it highest in its small cars with manual transmissions and one of the top 3 in the automatics; reliability was rated excellent. CR subsequently demoted the car for safety reasons (no side curtain airbags, like most small cars); I predict most decent small cars will come with them as options in the next year or two and Mazda3 will be restored to recommended as part of the top 3.

    Full disclosure: I drive a Mazda Protege5, predecessor to the Mazda3; CR has rated the P5 as reliable for the last 7 years; I have not had a problem since purchase (2002); I am not car salesman.
  • cticti Posts: 134
    To be picky, the Mazda3 has side airbags as an option. Mazda apparently did not provide one for testing.

    I can't imagine NOT getting one with sidee air bags as that option package as all the safety goodies - SAB, SAB, ABS, EBD. Acronyms aplenty!

  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    "the Mazda3 has side airbags as an option." Thanks Jason for the correction.

    "Mazda apparently did not provide one for testing" I predict Mazda won't repeat that mistake again!

    According to the Mazda3 brochure, side airbags don't seem available in Canada. Kudos to MazdaUSA!
  • barry42barry42 Posts: 64
    Oh cgr45 !! I must tell you my story !! I saw the car when it was first shown in the Mags !! What's not to like about the outside appearance !!I had a small Chevy Blazer that I never liked so I investigated more and everything I found out was positive !! the dash -- the interior -- the fit and finish -- and the best dealer in town was managed by an old friend of the family !! In Feb of '04 I bought an '05 HB in a color called Sparkling Sand 24E and Beige [ incidentally mud flaps come on the cars as standard down here in Guatemala ] The problems that others have cited have not occurred on my car !! It gets hot down here but the AC does a fine job !! The only thing I have done with the car is normal service !! But, if I did have a problem I know I would get good service , because , I know the manager as a long time friend !! I know I don't need to go on about the ride and the handling because anyone who owns a " 3 " knows that they are wonderful !!

    I sold my wife's Toyota Yaris [ Echo ] last week and I'm going to order her a Mazda3 Sedan next week !!

    Happy Hunting and enjoy your negotiating with the Sales Manager !!

    incidentally, I am not a Salesman and I hate most of them !!

    Cheers !! Barry42
  • Yeah, the fact is, a majority of Mazda3 owners have had few to no problems, and what few problems we've had were fixed quickly, with no fuss. However, there ARE a select few 04 owners who appear to have had issues with the A/C system.

    I predict cgr is going to end up with buyer's remorse after buying the Accord, which, incidentally, is also not a perfect model. And good luck with the Honda dealers...they think they sell BMWs ;)
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