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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, I started looking for a used car about a month ago. I'm replacing a Land Rover SUV that is bigger than what it is used for, so I looked into econo hatchbacks. When I found the Mazda3, I thought it would fit perfectly ... good on gas, relatively inexpensive, good room, etc. Well, it would figure that finding an 04-07 Hatchback w/5sp would be almost impossible. There was one here locally about 3 weeks ago (I stalled and it sold). I also made the mistake of driving a friend's Speed3 ... that was probably what did me in. Eventhough I wanted something I could pay cash for, I knew that putting a healthy downpayment and financing a small amount would be fine.

So I find an 07 Speed3 that has been extremely well maintained < 15k miles, perfect paint, etc. And I ended up paying more than I wanted but it is exactly what I wanted: a GT w/o moonroof or nav ... I'm sure most people like these options but not for me. I've read some odd things about the engine mounts, suspension bushings, etc. I need to figure out what I should keep an eye on (closest dealer is 60 miles). I got a kick out of people freaking out about people buying a Mazda3 or Speed3 as there first stick shift and learning on it ... why not, this thing is easy to drive! Ever drive a Cobra, that thing's clutch was a beast compared to this!
 

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I hear you about trying to find a hatchback with a manual transmission. I'm also trying to find a GT model. No one has any for sale. The few that are listed online are hundreds of miles away and either have high miles or are way over priced.

I think I'd probably be satisfied with a MZ3 GT, but it I may be forced to but a MS3 like you were :). They are actually easier to find at a fair price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
$18.2k OTD. Sadly, a dealer in BHam, AL had an 08 Speed3 GT for $18.9 + tax, ttl, etc but it is Black and I will never have another black car again ... it is way too hot here in AL and it is only clean looking directly after washing it (IMHO)! The 08 had more miles on it, although that would not have really deterred me.

After a week, I still love the car buy I just hooked the IPOD jack up after unplugging the Sirius ... disappointing hiss. Probably due to hooking it into the headphone jack vs the dock connection. I'm sure y'all have hashed this issue out and will search for the info ... someday. I do have a squeak in the morning (esp when cold out) from the rear; probably sway bar, hopefully not springs.

This car is almost as fast as my old Cobra, but it handles way better! Especially coming from the Land Rover ... holy crap! Now I just have to fix up the Rover and get it sold.
 

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that's not too bad i guess. i currently own a 06 mz3 hatch and am looking to trade in for a speed3. i hope i can find one here in my area for 18k or less. we'll see
 
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