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Greetings,

I'm very close to purchasing a 2010 Mazda3. It's seems to be really a matter choosing between a 2.5 liter engine and a 2.0 liter engine. I'm researching the actual gas mileage owners are getting with the 2.3 to determine if difference owners are getting. The 2010 with the 2.5 has a computer that displays a calculated gas mileage. I think all I need to do is conduct an extended test drive and keep my eye on the mileage.

The problem I'm having is there are lot of complaints about things not working right. I live in Houston, TX and auto air conditioners that don't cool well enough is not acceptable.

Is Consumer Reports the best source of data on quality issues with the Mazda3?

This will be a commuter car for my wife, but I will drive it too. We chose this over the corolla because it handles so much better. But, a fun car to drive, that is not reliable, is no fun at all. Reliability concerns are what eliminated the VW's from consideration.

I typically buy new and keep the cars for 150K mi., so I'm comitted to a long term ownership of the car. But, reliability issues cannot be tolerated.

Does anyone know what reliablity issues were addressed with 2010 model?
 

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i have a little over 60 000 miles and no problems so far....

however, i have a feeling the mazda3 will NOT go the distance like most hondas and toyotas are famous for.
 

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I don't know what reliability issues exist prior to 2010 models. There are a couple nit picks but nothing that has you going back to the dealer again and again.

Remember, the 3 debuted in 2004 and so therefore, there are not many 150k + on the road. Sales of the Protege were only a fraction of the Corolla/Civic so we don't hear of all the 250k+ stories like we do with better selling models. However, I do agree with Blam on the overall longevity of the model. Having driven mostly Honda's for the majority of the nearly 20 years I've been driving, I do not feel the 3 has stamina of the Honda/Toyota.

There were a few complaints that were addressed along the way such as the weak a/c.

If you're looking for a higher mileage commuter car, the 2.0 will yield a much better return on MPG.
 

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Had the car since 60k and it really drove like a new car when I bought it. Infact, it still drives like a new car at my current 90k. I can't imagine the 2010 being any different unless they cheaped it on a ton of parts.
 

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I had my 05 until 85,000 miles, and it still drove like it was brand new when it was totaled. I am was so confident in the dependability of the model, that I replaced my 3 with a new model.
 

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I have about 60k on my 2005 and it has been very reliable with only a couple problems. Couple bars on my rear window defogger don't work, clutch squeek (which fixed itself), couple rattles here and there in the cold. Overall though, it has been excellent and with my modifications and hard driving style, it still feels very tight with no flexing. I don't have any problem with the A/C as it cools down the interior relatively well.

However, I do agree with what people said about about long-term lifespans. Things like thin paint and weak motor mounts will probably play havoc as the years pass. They are the two weak points that will hold the car back from being on the road 10-15 years like a lot of other cars are.
 

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My general impression is that the 3 has been a reliable model. My GF and I had no concerns about buying an 08 2.3 MT as her daily driver. One of my good friends purchased an 05 2.0 MT new and it's still doing great after around 50k miles.

If under the blanket of "reliability" you're including minor fit and finish issues (i.e. not just serious problems) though, I'd be wary of the 2010 only because it's the first year after a major redesign. All manufacturers (even Honda and Toyota) will tend to have a few bugs to work out during the first year of a model.

It's probably nothing to worry about, but if rock-solid reliability is as much of a concern as the wording of your post implies then you might be better off with an 09 if you definitely want a 3.
 

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I have over 192,000 miles on my '04. The interior quality is poor. The A/C sucks. Exterior fit & finish is good. I had some issues early on, but have had no real issues in the last 92,000 miles. I have used synthetic blends & full synthetic oil which gets changed every 7-10K miles. Only recently have I had to add any between changes.

Paul
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148k on my '04. Some fuel system problem around 50k. Rear brakes replaced twice. Thats it. I agree with previous poster. The interior quality in this car is awful. CHeap carpeting, cheap trim. But all around the most reliable car I ever owned. (vs 2 acuras, 1 honda, 1 toyota and a slew of Nissans)
 

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unless its an american brand (j/k), reliability sometimes is overated. Lemons are everywhere. My dad has a Benz that had more issues than my 99 Altima.

Nissans were supposed to be junk, but the only major things I've ever encountered in 10 yrs with it were:
1) replaced radiator last yr and upper hoses
2) slight oil leak from distributor area (sold prior to fixing it)
3) valve cover gasket replaced
4) both front CV axles replaced
5) rattle from glove compartment door

that's about it. 137K miles and was still going well.
 

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Just past 4 years and 60k miles for my '05 3i (2.0L 5-speed manual).

So far there have been no problems at all and the car has been totally reliable and very fuel efficient. Mine has averaged 38.6 mpg based on all tanks since purchase.

However, keep in mind that I've taken VERY good care of my 3. This means it's never been abused, is kept covered when not in use-including when while I'm at work, I avoid taking short trips, use synthetic lubricants and premium oil filters, etc.

People sometimes make fun of me when I'm covering my car, but believe me over time doing so can greatly slow the rate of deterioration resulting from constant exposure to acid rain and UV radiation. Judging by my experience so far, if you're willing to make an effort to take very good care of your Mazda 3 it's likely to take care of you for a long time. But if you abuse and beat on it a lot I'm unconvinced how well will hold up under such stress over the long-term. Of course, I'd say the same about Toyotas and Hondas...particularly late-model versions.

As a long-time owner of products from Toyota and Honda my guess would be that my 3i s/b good for well over 200k miles if it doesn't fall prey to accidents or unexpected forces of nature.

Do I feel it's as solidly built as some of the older Toyotas I've owned? Hmm....close, but not quite. However I also don't feel many of the Toyotas assembled in the U.S. over the past decade have the same high quality of materials as older models which were manufactured and assembled in Japan either.

If you're interested in superior mileage by all means don't overlook the 3i w/2.0L manual transmission combo. Driven with restraint these cars are capable of delivering 45+ mpg results. I once squeezed 626 miles out one under 14 gallon tank simply while commuting back and forth to work, and during one leisurly day-trip while limiting average cruising to the low 50's I've topped 50 mpg in my 3i.

All things considered I've been very satisfied with my first Mazda and still find myself smiling as I walk to it in the parking lot.

If you're interested in comparing real-world MPG results check out www.brianbauer.org.
All of my car's results are posted there...see "Mazda3 2005 2.0L manual transmission"
 

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[quote author=Fiji Mazda3 link=topic=137795.msg2987487#msg2987487 date=1236782107]
What's wrong with your interior?
[/quote]

Carpet is very poor quality. The fabric on the door panels is coming loose like a GM product. Did I mention the low quality carpet?

Paul
 

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It is no contest. I ditched my 2007 Civic for a 2005 Mazdaspeed MX-5 and 6 months later retired my Toyota SUV for a Mazdaspeed3. I have seen absolutely no reliability issues with either of my Mazdas. I would put their quality and reliability right there with Toyota and Honda, although Mazda does not seem to sell nearly as many cars. For the record, my Mazda Dealer is what REALLY makes me hold on to my cars. They are THE BEST.
 

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[quote author=kg4izw link=topic=137795.msg2989126#msg2989126 date=1236823894]
It is no contest. I ditched my 2007 Civic for a 2005 Mazdaspeed MX-5 and 6 months later retired my Toyota SUV for a Mazdaspeed3. I have seen absolutely no reliability issues with either of my Mazdas. I would put their quality and reliability right there with Toyota and Honda, although Mazda does not seem to sell nearly as many cars. For the record, my Mazda Dealer is what REALLY makes me hold on to my cars. They are THE BEST.
[/quote]

+1 for Mazda cars
-1 for Mazda dealers
 

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Check out Consumer Reports 2009 Annual Auto Issue, which is on sale now.

The Mazda 3 received good reports all around, on both new and used models.
 

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In regards to the air conditioner, I test drove a 2010 yesterday and they seem to have fixed it. I had the air blasted on high and I was freezing within 5 minutes in 85 degree weather...something that DOES NOT happen in my 06.

IIRC the 2006 Mazda 3 won an award for being the most reliable car in the world...or something like that. It used to be on Mazdas website somewhere.
 

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This sounds good. Maybe I will get the 2010 model, but I like the 2007. I test drove the 2010 and the A/C works just like in the 2007. Maybe they fixed it in the 2007 models.
 

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[quote author=Initialjoe link=topic=137795.msg2990181#msg2990181 date=1236876102]
The 2010 that I test drove had the Automatic climate control...maybe that makes a difference? I don't have the Auto Climate Control.
[/quote]
Ah, I see. I have auto climat control in my 2007 S GT. That is the difference I bet, plus I heard that they put in a stronger unit.
 
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