The Mazda3 is among the most well-rounded models in the small car category. It is quieter, rides more comfortably, and is more agile and fuel efficient than its Protegé predeccesor. Moreover, it returned very impressive fuel economy, especially for a conventional gasoline-powered vehicle with an automatic transmission. The Madza3's very good interior quality stands out in a category where many vehicles are cheaply finished.
Alerts
There are 2 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit.
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
NA
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS available, standard from 2011. Side air bags available from 2000. Head protection air bags available from 2004, standard from 2010. ESC available from 2007, standard from 2011. Blind spot monitoring standard on Touring and Grand Touring from 2012. Forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking available from 2014.
Road Test

The Mazda3 is among the most well-rounded models in the small car category. It is quieter, rides more comfortably, and is more agile and fuel efficient than its Protegé predeccesor. Moreover, it returned very impressive fuel economy, especially for a conventional gasoline-powered vehicle with an automatic transmission. The Madza3's very good interior quality stands out in a category where many vehicles are cheaply finished. However, rear-seat room and trunk space are relatively tight. The Mazda3 received a Poor rating in the IIHS side-crash test when configured without side- or head-protection airbags.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
Front
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
4-door hatchback
sedan
Transmissions Available
  • 5-speed Manual
  • 4-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 2-liter 4 (148 hp)
  • 2.3-liter 4 (160 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2005 Mazda 3 owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"molding around windows disintegrating"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Bumper is coming off from being pulled by parking cement blocks. Slowly snapping more and more plastic clips"

Anonymous, CO (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"The front bumper is too low and has been broken by parking at normal height curbs"

Larry D., AB (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"Paint has cracked, faded in rear sections of the vehicle"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"paint on rear spoiler - clear coat failure, premature to rest of paint"

Scott D., CA (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"clear coat coming off. paint fading"

Anonymous, PA (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Clear coat is gone causing the paint to disappear revealing metal"

Anonymous, NV (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The car has always been parked outside. There are a few patches of paint bubbling up because of rust underneith on the hood and window frames."

Anonymous, DC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Paint began cracking and peeling off much earlier in the vehicle's life than I would have expected, even with good care."

Landin L., TN (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"several areas of the mazda 3 are now peeling off the clear coat: car roof - side view mirrors tops, the door handle surrounds, the rear spoiler was bad, but we repainted that, and the rear bumper cover was degrading, but that also has been repainted. the car has been parked outside most of it's life. it gets run through an automated car wash about every 2 weeks. it gets waxed by hand once a year."

Scott D., CA (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Rust

"Body rusting around the rear wheel wells"

Anonymous, AB (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rusting in front of the rear wheels"

Glen J., IL (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rear wheel wells rusting"

Anonymous, ME (2005 Mazda 3)

"rust around rear wheels and along hatch"

Anonymous, MA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust around bottom of car. Paint peeling on wheels"

Marc G., ME (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Back panel on drivers side"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Left rear fender well started rusting on the liip of the fender facing the tire"

C S., IL (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust in rear wheel wells and bottom of two doors. Dealer says not covered anymore and wants to charge >$2300 to replace doors"

Anonymous, PA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Rusting below the door to the gas tank"

Anonymous, MI (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust at rear wheel area. Very costly to repair"

Anonymous, MN (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"The under carriage is completely rusted. Rear quarter panels, trunk are rusted. Was recalled by mazda but the fix did nothing to stop the significant rust"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Extensive wheel well rust, spotty rust in many other places"

Anonymous, IL (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Fine until the last 12 months, but then widespread rust wheelwells (both rear, 1 front). I'd hoped to keep the car much longer, but not now"

John C., MA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"rear wheelwell and quarter panel areas are seriously rusted now, even after having had anti-rust treatment when the car was bought new. Bubbling of paint on door frame indicates hidden rusting on doors as well"

Peter C., ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust has been a problem with Mazda for many years and continues to be one, apparently. Would have bought another Mazda this time around because the 3 is a really fun car to drive, but wouldn't want to face the awful inevitable rust problems again"

Anonymous, QC (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Rusting has begun around wheel wells. Not visible from outside"

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"roof started to rust after 5 years, mazda would not honour rust warranty. door posts and rear quarter panels also now badly rusted"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Excessive rusting, including perforation, on rear quarter panels, trunk lid (around trunk brake light) and hood (due to small stone chip)"

Allan M., ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust on underside of doors and rear wheel panels"

Anonymous, OH (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Serious rust in the rear quarter panels on both sides and rust on the window pillar on the rear passenger side. Repaired for $1060"

Paul F., IL (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust is spreading all over the car. The vehicle performs amazing but the car will die due to the rust before the engine or any other mechanical component fails on the vehicle"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"It rusts faster than any other car that old that I have ever seen"

Anonymous, ND (2005 Mazda 3 I)

"rust in wheel wheels, bottom of doors, and on pedestal roof support between front and rear doors"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust is developing around the wheel wells on all 4 wheels. This car has been meticulously cleaned and waxed over its lifetime"

Patrick G., KS (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust started early along the wheel wells about 3 years in"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The fronts of the rear wheel wells and along the very bottom of the sides seem to be problem spots for rust. There's quite a bit of it on my vehicle that I haven't gotten to fix yet, and I've seen rust in the same area on other cars of this model"

David H., KS (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Excessive rust along rear wheel wells and back hatch. Started 6yrs ago and has now rusted completely through the body in most places. Have seen Rust in these same locations on multiple other Mazda 3's"

Anonymous, AB (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"It's rusting out on almost every panel"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust spots on both left and right rear panels"

P V., MA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Paint around the edges of the doors, hatchback, and wheel wells have cracked and peeled off, leaving the metal exposed and rusting. This began happening when the vehicle was 7 years old and progressed very quickly."

Landin L., TN (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust spot on inside of car at where the door opens."

K L., (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Significant rust is forming in the rear wheel wells and along the bottom of the door opening"

Anonymous, AB (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Typical Mazda issue with perforation rust on rear quarter panels, above wheel wells. Concerned the structural integrity is compromised. Expected with only a 5 year manufacturers warranty against perforation."

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust around doors and underside due to water getting trapped in the trim. Needed to remove trim and replace rocker panels."

Evelyn P., NB (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rust around the wheels on the left side"

Anonymous, QC (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"bottom of doors facing interior, also rear wheelwells"

Anonymous, IL (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Alignment

"All three problems relate to the same rear camber angle issue"

Paul H., OR (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Vehicle frequent alignments, due to bearing issues. Excessive road and vibration noise"

Anonymous, AB (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Ball joints

"The left front ball joint had to be replaced due to noise when turning"

Dennis P., NE (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Shocks or struts

"Rear shock mounts broke"

D M., RI (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"likely just normal wear, car 'bottoms' when going up a driveway - had to replace after 207,000 KM at a cost incl labour of 1,258"

Robert M., ON (2005 Mazda 3 S)

"Both failed at year 8"

Anthony L., BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"One front strut completely ruined from hitting a pothole. Both rear shocks also had to be replaced due to failure"

Anonymous, NJ (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"second set iof shocks/struts"

Robert W., IL (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Had to replace both front struts"

Anonymous, NM (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Right front Strut leaking oil Main engine mount leaking oil"

David S., BC (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Front struts replaced as a pair. Left rear shock replaced, followed by right. Right had to be replaced again - part still under warranty, after mount broke off on rocky road"

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"One of the rear shocks came detached from the body where a joint rusted through. The mechanic recommended replacing both as this is apparently very common for old Mazda 3s"

Jeff C., ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Routine replacement of struts because of wear"

Francis A., NV (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Right front strut failed"

Mark I., WA (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Starting at 40,000 miles the right front strut leaked oil. Seems like this should not fail with so few hile driven"

Gerald R., DC (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Replacement of both shock and strut"

Anonymous, PA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Springs or torsion bars

"Rear torsion bars wore out year8"

Anthony L., BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Steering linkage (includes rack and pinion)

"needed to replace axle assembly and rack and pinion assembly"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Steering wheel vibration

"cv boot needed to be replaced. Caused steering wheel vibration at speeds above 60 mph"

Anonymous, LA (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Tire wear is uneven

"Rapid and uneven rear tire wear due to incorrect camber angles. Not adjustable without replacing the rear control arms with aftermarket (adjustable) ones"

Paul H., OR (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Antilock system (ABS)

"In very cold weather, part of the ABS failed to close - it made a sound like a distant siren (wheeeooo) at every stop. For a short while ABS stopped working completely, which moved the brake engagement point in the brake pedal range of travel. When the weather warmed up, it got better, and seems to work fine as long as it's warm enough."

Kathleen I., NC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"The brake pedal feel changed dramatically, as if it had gone from power-assisted to manual. The mechanic said something in the ABS was staying open and the entire system should be replaced. I haven't repaired it because the problem doesn't seem to interfere with braking performance very much. Also, it seems to work when the weather is warm."

Kathleen I., NC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Calipers

"Brake pads rusted during storage"

Anonymous, MN (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Caliper stuck, protective boot torn apart. Had to be replaced"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Master cylinder

"After replacing brakes, rotors and one caliper due to wear or erratic operation the mechanic was unable to bleed the brakes. Said that the master cylinder had a problem and it needed replacement."

Charles M., VA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Normal routine brake wear

"There was no problem. I replaced the front brakes at 70000 miles because I became concerned with safety when they became 10 years old. I suspect the pads lasted that long because I started downshifting to slow during the first winter and it became a"

C S., IL (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Normal Brake replacement...2nd set in 270000 miles"

Valerie M., OR (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"found when the mechanic was replacing the air compressor"

Anonymous, NJ (2005 Mazda 3)
Parking brake

"Cable seized on the emergency brake. Could not safely park on a incline"

Dhiman M., ON (2005 Mazda 3)
Premature brake wear

"Car began losing braking power. Mechanic said that calipers were not moving correctly and were causing unusual wear patterns on the rotors."

Charles M., VA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Regular brake failure

"Braking felt different, didn't feel comfortable driving it on the street in case they failed completely"

Anonymous, AZ (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Rotors

"rotors have warped twice"

Anonymous, WA (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rotors warped which led to squeaking and vibration. Had to replace front two, may have to replace rear two"

John B., NC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Needed to replace routers, calipers, and brakes due to rust"

Michael W., WA (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Rotor we're worn, needing replacing"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Squeaking

"Brakes always shook and squeaked when applied. Never could get them fixed"

Anonymous, TX (2005 Mazda 3)

"There wasn't much squeaking, but my son told me to check the breaks after he drove the car. Took it to the repair shop. Brakes were replaced. This is the first time the breaks were replaced since I bought the car"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Alarm or security system (excluding aftermarket systems)

"our car exhibited an intermittent alarm going off for no reason. took it to Capo Mazda, they kept the car for a month, letting it sit and trying a few haphazard methods of disconnecting door actuators to see if they could isolate the issue. after a month, they recommended replacing all actuators and the body control module as a best guess. the estimate was close to $2000 for this. our budget for this repair was only $500. also we had a gear shift lockout on the automatic trans, also occasional. we purchased a salvage body control unit via eBay, and had this installed plus one new door actuator by the dealer. unfortunately this did not stop the intermittent alarm, though it happened less frequently than before. via an internet search on mazda forums, some suggested the hood latch switch might be a problem - i checked the continuity with an eclectic test meter, and it was ok, but periodically cleaning the contacts, seems to give us relief from the alarm going off that my wife's work complained to her about. I will try and replace this hood latch/switch. the body control unit seemed to help the shifter lockout issue. the driver seat height adjuster stopped working while the vehicle was at Capo Mazda, and they disavowed responsibility for this issue, and quoted us about $1400 to repair parts/labor. they then offered a 50/50 deal. we threatened to go to mazda customer service, and they agreed to supply the parts, which i then did the labor for. And they asked we never return to their dealership, which I've never encountered before in 59 years of life. the tech said the factory alarm issue happens, from time to time, the body control module often is at fault. the seat height adjuster issue was due to some problem with the handle and a tiny plastic cam gizmo - which isn't available separately - so a $5 dollar repair turned into a whole new seat mounting unit costing more than $500. the hood latch/switch is only $65 or so. the dealer did provide a loaner vehicle, which was great. another tech came up with doing a trans flush for the shifter lockout issue, which their lead tech admitted made no sense... so the alarm is going off about once a week or so with maintenance on the hood latch vs multiple times a day."

Scott D., CA (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Body control module

"The module began to have problems, and since it connects many systems in the car, many have been affected. Clock, radio, wiper settings, emergency lights, check engine light, possibly even responsible for the CD player"

David H., KS (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"The brake light sensor broke. $5 sensor, $120 labor"

Anonymous, CO (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"socket for passenger-side tail light crumbled and had to be replaced. Had to order entirely new tail light assembly, because socket unavailable on its own"

Anonymous, LA (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Gauges

"dashboard lights out too expensive to fix"

Robert W., IL (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Headlights

"These burn out more frequently than I think they should. Although some brands seem to last longer than others"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Headlight fail prematurely and are difficult to replace they are in an incredibly hard to reach spot and do not always connect and hold in place properly"

Anonymous, WA (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Headlight socket burnt out. Had to replace wiring and the socket cost a fortune"

Dhiman M., ON (2005 Mazda 3)

"the plastic housings of the sockets for both headlamps melted, causing lamp failure"

Larry D., AB (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"In 12 years changed headlights 3 times, last year I had to replace the light piglet, or better known as light sockets and wires"

Thomas M., CA (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"There is some sort of contact issue and it's a poor design, making changing the bulb difficult and time consuming"

Alison O., BC (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"One of the headlights doesn't come on unless I turn it off and on once or twice."

Anonymous, AB (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Headlights need replacing way too often."

Anonymous, WA (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Interior lights

"When the headlights are on, the radio light and all dial lights go off. They are on in the day and off at night"

Alison O., BC (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Warning lights

"Engine light is on most of the time. Mechanic can't find a reason for it"

Anonymous, FL (2005 Mazda 3)

"Our regular mechanic has run diagnostics on the problem at least twice in the past year. He said oxygen sensor seemed to be the problem. Light goes out until we get the car home then it comes on again and stays on. 4 times in past 2 years; it is s"

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

A/C compressor

"Have put on 3 aftermarket AC compressors. Ridiculously expensive from dealer"

Kevin S., FL (2005 Mazda 3)

"A/C compressor failed at just over 100000 miles. Pump vanes destroyed"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"I feel like the A/C compressor died earlier than I would think for a Mazda. It was a $1500 repair"

Anonymous, NC (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Complete Failure that required replacement of the compressor"

Anonymous, UT (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"The compressor failed when the car was 6 years old. Costly repair for A/C"

Anonymous, MD (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The ball bearings in the compressor failed"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The A/C compressor failed and had to be replaced"

Kathleen I., NC (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Since I bought the 2005 Mazda new, the air conditioner has never worked right. I love the car but the air conditioner has always been problematic. I have gotten it "fixed" several times (very expensive) and yet still it does not get very cold and it turns off often. Very uncomfortable in hot summers. In the summer, if it is hot, I use my husband's car. Considering buying another car, even though the air conditioner is really the only problem"

Anonymous, CT (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"froze up"

Donald H., OH (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Compressor failed, possibly due to low refrigerant/compressor oil leak. Removed ac belt to stop the horrible noise the compressor was making but repairing the ac system was too expensive. May sell the vehicle before we repair it. We were told The other components listed (condenser, etc) may need replaced also"

Anonymous, IN (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The original compressor blew up; the first replacement stopped working after several weeks; the second replacement had a leak (fixed) and then got unreliable - it turns itself off if the fan speed is too high."

Kathleen I., NC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"ominous clicking sound"

Anonymous, NJ (2005 Mazda 3)

"The A/C compressor failed all at once - friends called it blown up or melted - and had to be replaced. The second compressor failed within 6 months and was replaced again. The A/C still isn't working well, but I don't want to simply replace the compressor again. I'm looking for a mechanic who can think outside the box."

Kathleen I., NC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Refrigerant leaks

"Ac system acted as if it was low on refrigerant and this may have cause the failure of the ac compressor"

Anonymous, IN (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"It was a very slow leak and its location could not be determined."

Anonymous, NY (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"For the last three summers it was necessary to recharge the compressor at the beginning of the cooling season due to slow coolant leak during the year"

Gerald R., DC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"Engine check light came on, indicated emissions problem, could have been two components, replaced the more likely one, light came back on next day. Planning to replace second component this week"

Kathleen I., NC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Faulty solenoid on charcoal canister exhaust valve"

D M., RI (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Fuel pump

"expensive to fix. just had to replace it"

John V., HI (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"start stumble issue, iffy diagnosis of fuel pressure drop too quick though running pressure ok, resulted in recommendation of and replacement of fuel pump assy. didn't fix issue, but cost almost $1000"

Scott D., CA (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"fuel pump was no pumping because of a loss of pressure in the fuel tank"

Anonymous, NC (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"CEL appeared, took a lot of tests to figure out, smelled gasoline near the back, then spent $850 to replace the fuel pump which resolved the problem. Fuel pump was cracked at the top"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

"o2 senser went bad causeing engine to run poorly"

Jack G., IL (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Thermometer for the thermostat malfunctioned"

Haim B., NJ (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Previously had a check-engine light that was corrected by replacing "leak detection sensor". However, check-engine light came on a couple of weeks later so we took the car in within the last 12 months. This time problem was broken wiring connector"

John H., BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"my engine light came on after an oil change at the dealership.. told was an P0446 evap emission control vent control malfunction and would cost me $1500 to fix that was 9000 KM ago. Still running with engine light on."

Anonymous, AB (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Accessory belts or pulleys

"Cracked pulley causing belt slip"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Engine computer

"Occasional check engine light - no other symptoms"

Anonymous, HI (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Engine mounts

"all engine mounts needed be replaced. One has been replaced a second time"

Anonymous, VA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Mechanic said they were the worst broken mounts he ever saw"

Anonymous, PA (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"I had to replace the front (there is only 1) engine mount for a second time, but the first time was not a Mazda mount"

Anonymous, KS (2005 Mazda 3 I)

"I've replace three engine mounts. Passenger side top mount twice. They leak and spew fluid all over the hot engine and it smelled of rotten fish when it happened"

Todd G., TX (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"2nd time replaced in the last 6 years. dealership said they were designed poorly, have to be replaced all the time"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"This is the third time I've had to replace engine mount for this vehicle. This one took three days and stumped three technicians before we finally stumbled on to which mount it was."

Anonymous, TX (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Oil leaks

"Not actually leaking but consumes a huge amount of oil."

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Clutch replacement

"Clutch pedal wouldn't come back. Something was broken and had to be replaced"

Anonymous, ME (2005 Mazda 3)

"Original clutch lasted 10 years and 197,000 miles. I think that is pretty good"

Peter L., CA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"clutch needed to be replaced at about 85000 miles"

Anonymous, MA (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"I had the clutch replaced because i noticed how difficult it had become to accelerate when using the highway"

John J., VA (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Clutch replacement, at about 160000 km, cost about $1500 even after "loyal customer" discount from dealer"

Peter C., ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Clutch needed replacing, not suprised on a 10 year old car"

Jonathan A., WA (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"clutch had been failing; and eventually I had it replaced"

Bob A., TX (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"clutch failed and was replaced"

Robert A., TX (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Transmission rebuild or replacement

"Upshift slippage between 2nd & 3rd gear. Reverse engages only with random attempts of shifting between Drive and Reverse. Will sell vehicle instead of repair."

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Doors or sliding doors

"error - no such problems"

Anonymous, WI (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Locks and latches

"The locking mechanism on the driver side door failed and had to be replaced at the dealership"

Patrick G., KS (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Mirrors

"The rear view mirror fell off of the windshield"

Anonymous, FL (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Seat belts

"Don't slide all the way back to normal position"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Windows

"About 11 months ago, driver's window would not go down. Shop replaced switch which seemed to fix problem. About 1 month ago, happened again. This lasted for a few days, then started working again. Discussed with shop but no action taken"

John H., BC (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Cannot open the left side windows from the driver door button"

Anonymous, ON (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Sometime the driver's side window doesn't respond to the operation of the switch"

Anonymous, QC (2005 Mazda 3 SP23 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Driveline vibration

"All 3 motor mounts went bad"

Carlos E., AZ (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Driveshaft or axle

"Steering wheel began vibrating. There was a thumping sound on the passenger front side that I though might be a flat tire. I slowed down and pulled off the road onto an exit ramp. I made a left hand turn off the exit and the car made the turn but"

Barbara C., NS (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Electrical failure

"The control knob to turn on the air conditioner intermittently cuts out and the compressor stops. This happens every ten to fifteen minutes . I just push the knob in an hold it thereto restart the compressor. It is a nuisance but the compressor cools the interior well when it is running"

Anonymous, DC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Car stopped working - power steering not possible, dash electronics cut out. This happened several times, not able to steer. Scary!"

Anonymous, WI (2005 Mazda 3)

"The switch that controls the air conditioner intermittently fails and the compressor goes off. It needs constant pressure by hand on the switch knob to keep the compressor on."

Gerald R., DC (2005 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Alternator

"Car would not hold a charge. However, at 12 years old, this was not an unexpected repair"

Miguel V., KY (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Electronic ignition

"Problem unknown. On 2 separate occasions. In cold temps, slowing down to a stop from a slow speed with my foot on the break the car has red lined on its own. Each time I immediately put the car in park and it continued at max RPM. I shut the car of"

Anonymous, ME (2005 Mazda 3)

"Car ran rough - Needed to replace oxygen sensor"

Anonymous, HI (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"Leak in the water pump\thermostat housing"

Donald B., ID (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

"On the rear doors the rubber seal between the window frame and the glass leaks when there is heavy rain. Water collects in the door and sloshes when driving the car. There are several flap valves at the bottom of the door but they don't open by themselves. .. I Have to open them with a tooth pick to let the water flow out after each heavy rain"

Gerald R., DC (2005 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Squeaks or rattles

"The car squeeks when you back up and sometimes when you drive forward"

Anonymous, FL (2005 Mazda 3 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Thermostat

"The thermostat malfunctioned and I needed to replace it"

Anonymous, TX (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Sticking thermostat-expensive for dealer replacement"

Anonymous, MO (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"stuck in the open position"

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Exhaust leaks

"Not so much leaking, though there was some. Fixing the exhaust is not easy since the structure is integrated. Needed welding"

Evelyn P., NB (2005 Mazda 3 S)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

What Owners Say

Engine rebuild or replacement

"Well, The used Mazda 3 had to get a new engine put in due to insufficient compression 2 weeks after we bought it. Luckily the dealership payed for most of it"

Anonymous, ND (2005 Mazda 3 I)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Gear selector or linkage

"Manual Transmission cables snapped. $700 repair."

Anonymous, NY (2005 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Radio

"Control Buttons Not Functioning"

Anonymous, OR (2005 Mazda 3 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
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