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.
There are 2 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Consumer Reports’ Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey can improve the chances of finding a compatible car match. How? Our survey data reveals whether, all things considered, owners would buy the same car again. The answer to that question is what determines our owner-satisfaction rating, which is a powerful piece of intel because it predicts how well a particular model will satisfy other owners.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Owner Satisfaction with:

Driving Experience

Includes acceleration and handling

What Owners Say

"Car has nice "zip," and little play in steering for quick and easy handling."

RONALD G., OH (2005 Mazda 3)

"Although this car is now 11 years old, it still provides an excellent driving experience; fun to drive. At the time of purchase, this car was noticeably superior in driving/performance feel vs. the numerous competitors I test drove. Specs of new cars in this segment are superior to this old car's but compared to a couple of recent cars in this class that I have driven as rentals, including new Mazda 3s, the old car has a more connected feel. On the negative side, I have had problems with the LE"

GLENN T., CA (2005 Mazda 3)

"I have never tired of driving this car The ability to downshift which started as a winter driving necessity, ultimately caused me to not replace the front brake pads for ten years, at which time I opted on the side of sanity."

Anonymous, IL (2005 Mazda 3)

"Style and performance"

WILLIAM S., MT (2005 Mazda 3)

"This car is fun to drive. Good acceleration and the hatchback acts as a small truck."

Anonymous, NC (2005 Mazda 3)

"Easy to drive, feels very connected to the road"

Anonymous, CA (2005 Mazda 3)

"handling, driving fun."

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3)

"Like manual transmission"

D M., VA (2005 Mazda 3)

"It handles very well, and when floored in 3rd, gives a real kick in the pants."

STEPHEN F., WA (2005 Mazda 3)

"The acceleration and handling were what led me to purchase the vehicle, even at almost 12 years old it's still quick and responsive."

DANIEL W., NC (2005 Mazda 3)

"It has very good acceleration; very peppy."

JOHN H., MA (2005 Mazda 3)

"Good handling, reasonable acceleration but weak motor mounts require gentle use of the throttle when in low gears."

PAUL H., OR (2005 Mazda 3)

"Even with the smaller, 2.0L engine it still performs. The handling is even better--it really makes this car fun on country roads."

JUSTIN P., TN (2005 Mazda 3)


Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

What Owners Say

"Plenty of room for my very long legs! AC is only fair. A noisy car. Ride ise firm--I like it!"

Anonymous, PA (2005 Mazda 3)

"Several negatives: lots of road noise on most road surfaces; auto lights and rain sensing wipers are erratic and annoyingly worse than simple manual control. Also the AC cycles all the time in heat mode, a waste of fuel and unnecessary wear and tear."

PAUL H., OR (2005 Mazda 3)

"Being a short person, the ease of adjust ability of the seat was most important. It adjusts forward, up, down and tilts. The steering wheel adjusts down and in and out. It was the only car that would fit me."

Anonymous, OR (2005 Mazda 3)


Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?

What Owners Say

"over the 11 years of ownership it seems to have been more reliable than some of my previous cars"

GERALD R., DC (2005 Mazda 3)

"I bought it for $9000 with 48K miles on it, and have added 100,000 with only minor problems."

STEPHEN F., WA (2005 Mazda 3)

"I love this car. 226,000 miles with virtually no problems and fun to drive!!"

VALERIE M., OR (2005 Mazda 3)


WILLIAM S., MT (2005 Mazda 3)

"good styling and mpg"

Anonymous, NJ (2005 Mazda 3)

"For the purchase price, this car is an excellent value! The car is over 10 years old and we expect it to last another 5 without serious intervention. We do take care of the car via oil changes etc. But it's been very reliable and overall low cost of ownership!"

DAVID B., OH (2005 Mazda 3)

"This car is just plain fun to drive--and might be the best balance of cost, performance, and utility available in a car."

JUSTIN P., TN (2005 Mazda 3)

"I purchased the car used (5 years) and it has been very reliable and required few repairs. It has had issues that are typical for this model, such as rust in the right-rear quadrant and brakes needing a little more frequent repair than I would consider average, but still overall very acceptable."

LARRY D., AB (2005 Mazda 3)


How it looks inside and out

What Owners Say

"looks very stylish but there is wind noise"

Anonymous, BC (2005 Mazda 3)


Anonymous, NJ (2005 Mazda 3)

"Compact hatchback in unique style"

CHANG J., CA (2005 Mazda 3)

"Love the orange dash display (no longer available)"

MARY E., IA (2005 Mazda 3)

"Though the car is now 10 years old the styling is still up to date. If I were to purchase a new car it may have some additional features, but the styling would be very similar considering what is on the market these days."

WILLIAM S., CA (2005 Mazda 3)

"The red from this model year is awesome! Did I mention the red is awesome?"

Anonymous, PA (2005 Mazda 3)

"It looks sporty. They don't use spoilers anymore on most cars but I feel this car still looks sharp and not out dated even after 16 years. The rear look good not like the cat's eye type the newer cars have. It looks sleek and well proportioned."

Anonymous, OR (2005 Mazda 3)

Would you buy this car again?

2005 vehicles
Ford Focus
Honda Civic
Hyundai Elantra
Mazda 3
Mini Cooper
Toyota Corolla
Toyota Prius
Volkswagen Jetta
Percentage of owners who would definitely purchase that same vehicle again. Owner-satisfaction Ratings are determined by the percentage of those who answered "definitely yes" to the question asked by the Consumer Reports Annual Auto Survey "Considering all factors (price, performance, reliability, comfort, enjoyment, etc.), would you get this car if you had to do it all over again?". If we don’t have sufficient data, a similar model might be used to form the owner-satisfaction score.
Change Vehicle