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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 is 1 recall 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.
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Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
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.
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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
  • 5-speed Automatic
  • 4-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 2-liter 4 (150 hp)
  • 2.3-liter 4 (160 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2006 Mazda 3 owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

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

“I believe the alignment problem, or the inability to align the car properly, is related to a recurring steering wheel vibration that nobody can cure”

Anonymous, NJ (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“I had my sway bar links, and axle replaced and am not sure under which category this goes. I also had to have an alignment but that could have been due in part to all of the pot holes around”

SUSn N., PA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Had to get complete realignment done as recommended by tire maintenance -- loosing too many tires. Turns out our "sports" model cannot carry much capacity without impacting alignment”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring Unsure)

“cracked ball joints”

Anonymous, QC (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Had to replace no. 4 engine mount and right control arm because bushings were leaking fluid”

Anonymous, GA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“FRONT/REAR CONTROL ARM BUSHINGS FAILED WITH UNDER 100,000 KM ON THE CAR. aS DID THE TRAILING ARM BUSHINGS”

C C., BC (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Front lower control arm rear bushing is "fluid-filled" design. Like many have experienced with this car (Internet forums), one of mine deteriorated and lost the internal fluid, resulting in excessive play. By design this isn't a life-threatening failure, but was manifest by noise, deteriorated handling, and uneven tire wear due to misalignment (camber and to some extent toe). While the other side was still functioning, it was apparent that it would suffer a similar fate in the not-too-distan”

Anonymous, WI (2006 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Shocks or struts

“Rear shocks replaced”

Anonymous, NC (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Both struts were replaced due to one of them leaking”

Anonymous, WA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Car was jittery when going over bumps or uneven roads. Dealer said struts need to be repaired”

Anonymous, MA (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“I had to have third set of rear struts and second set of front struts put on this car. I do only unremarkable city and some highway driving which should does not include any rough off road demands on the car”

Anonymous, RI (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The car is ten years old. Normal wear and tear”

Andrea K., IL (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“tires were wearing unevenly, rear swing arms and struts were replaced”

Anonymous, NY (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“they were just wore out - replaced all 4”

Danny B., FL (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“replaced due to wear”

Andrew S., MA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Strut leakage”

Anonymous, AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Went through a construction zone and was forced (due to traffic) to drive into a pit. Broke rear shock”

David B., NY (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Had to replace twice within 6 months because the shocks broke. First from a pothole, then from who knows what”

Chris M., NS (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Front shocks failed causing "roller coaster" bouncing”

Anonymous, BC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Strut came loose when driving over pothole”

Ryan S., NS (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“LEAKED OUT THEIR INTERNAL OIL WHICH CAUSED THEM NOT TO DAMPEN BUMPS IN THE ROAD. THE NEW STRUTS CORRECTED ALL THE GOOD HANDLING CHARACTERICS THAT THE CAR POSSESSED WHEN NEW”

Anonymous, MO (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Due mainly to an excessively rough winter with innumerable potholes, ruts and ice blocks many vehicles in Halifax suffered suspension problems. Mine were caused by a collection of unavoidable potholes complicated by a rapidly narrowing street due to”

Anonymous, NS (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“They are going bad”

John Q., TX (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Major rumbling and bounce from front end suspension”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“premature wear”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“2 front seals burst. Rear left upper mount broke”

Anonymous, IN (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“cracked or worn shocks”

Anonymous, QC (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Springs or torsion bars

“rear spring became detached from frame”

Andrew S., MA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“replaced both lower front suspension control arms with ball joint, as well as trailing link bushing on rear suspension”

Stephen W., WV (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Steering wheel vibration

“This car has a slight steering vibration problem that nobody can cure. I've tried alignments, wheel rotation, new tires, but it's been a recurring problem since the car was new. It's slight, and it comes and goes, but never goes away entirely”

Anonymous, NJ (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Premature bushing failure”

C C., BC (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Actually a control arm. Caught before failure during a routine inspection”

Edward C., NY (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The whole frontend caused bad tire wear that made an already noisy rooad noise condition, become a constanr "roar"”

Gary J., NM (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“tires on this car are difficult to maintain. constantly replacing them because of damage - every mechanic has noted uneven wear as being a contributor. this is despite having alignments and rotations”

Anonymous, MA (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Wheel bearing failed. Very expensive to replace at about $500. Really dumb design as a wheel bearing should not cost anything near that much to replace”

Anonymous, AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Intermittent noise. Dealer unable to replicate. Not repaired”

Anonymous, MI (2006 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Power steering leaks

“There was a minor leak of a power steering hose that required replacement”

Dennis R., CA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Paint/Trim

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

What Owners Say

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

“A Lot of the paint on the front bumper has chipped off”

Andrea K., IL (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Car has peeling paint om every flat horizintal service”

Anonymous, SC (2006 Mazda 3)

“The cars paint on the back bumper started chipping almost immediately”

Gary J., NM (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Paint peeling everywhere on the car”

William B., QC (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Paint is easily chipped and leads to rust”

Gary H., AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Paint was peeling of the hood and left front quarter panel. $1500 to do bodywork and repaint”

John K., FL (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“The paint on the outside mirrors has wrinkled, apparently from temperature changes when the car was being used by my son in Virginia rather than its usual home in southern California”

Anonymous, CA (2006 Mazda 3 i Unsure)
Rust

“I had rust repaired on the window frame by Mazda and the problem reoccurred in the same area plus other parts of the door, which were not covered by Mazda. Very poor!”

Zaf C., ON (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“rust around all wheel wells, side door panels, trunk”

Ross R., ON (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Car was recalled for rear wheel well rust, but I was not notified in time to have repair done for free. Very upsetting to miss by 3 weeks!”

Bob S., AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rusting more than similar (foreign) cars of same age. User forums confirm paint fauilure. Rocker panels rusted the length, w/paint peeling in sheets. Fender wells, rear light in trunk lid, spare tire well, undercarriage. Also, clearcoat is very thin”

Ernest J., WI (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“paint around the rear third brake light was starting to discolor and rust, and streak onto trunk”

Peter G., RI (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Myterious rust in one wheelwell and fading paint on doors”

James F., PA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure Unsure)

“Rust on the right rear door and right rear wheel are both known issues with this car”

Anonymous, CT (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rust so bad hood requires replacement. I bought extended rust warranty (10 yrs) but dealer balked at covering cost”

William B., QC (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rust gradually becoming worse around wheel wells, windows, trunk”

Ryan S., NS (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Rusted in areas where no parking lot type damage. Requested earlier than other cars I have owned”

Gayle L., ON (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Several areas have experienced paint failure and/or rust break through. Wheel wells, hood and rear hatch in particular”

Anonymous, NS (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“ROTTEN ROCKER PANELS, WON'T PASS INSPECTION fRAME ROT. sUSPENSION MOUNTING BRACKETS RUSTED OFF”

Pierre B., NS (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Rusting started at 4 years old, by centre brake light.Repaired under warranty but still rusting”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rust is mostly around the wheel wells which is apparently a common problem with Mazda's”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 S Unsure)

“Premature rust in the rear quarter panels and on the rear hatch despite regular washes. There was a recall for the condition but Mazda did not send letters out informing owners”

Dave R., AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The 2 C-pillars are almost rusted through. They require annual attention. It seems that Mazda didn't rust-proof this model year appropriately as I read a lot of people complaining about excessive rust on 2006 Mazda 3. I contacted Mazda about this too”

Marcin J., IL (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Surface rust, mainly around rear wheelwells”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“hatch door rust . rust between windows between front and back doors”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The car rusts very quickly. C-pillars and wheel wells rust faster than expected. The quality of the steel and rust proofing is very poor”

Anonymous, IL (2006 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“The trunk and seams of the car are covered in rust”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rusted around the wheel wels and trunk lock”

Anonymous, QC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rusty in several spots on the car”

Gary H., AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Window frame of rear door Body panel in front of rear tire”

Anonymous, WI (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“extensive rust all over. Even if I've paid for an anti corrosion treatment made by the dealer before the new car left the garage”

Alain N., QC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Both sides rear wheel areas are rusting heavily. This car did spend a lot of time in Wisconsin, so maybe a salt issue, but it is unusually bad on Mazda vs other vehicles I've owned”

Anonymous, NC (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The window columns between the driver and passenger side rusted. These were previously fixed by Mazda under warranty but it rusted again. This 2006 Mazda 3 is very bad for rusting. There is also rust near the rear bottom panels and the rear stop light”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“After rust proofing , rust still bad especialy under wheel wells”

Eileen A., ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 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)

“wiring connection at a wheel sensor failed. Replaced wiring at a cost of $250”

Charles S., NY (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“In the winter, ABS light would come on and off randomly. No codes when plugged for diagnostic. Problem disappeared since”

Abdelhalim B., QC (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Left rear caliper froze unexpectedly. Had to replace rear brakes and rotors as a result as well as the caliper and left parking brake cable. Brakes got so hot after just 2 miles driving I could smell them "burning" which is how I discovered issue”

Edward C., NY (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“rear calipers's pistons could not be retracted, so the calipers, rotors had to be replaced”

Anonymous, NY (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Caliper sliding bolts rust and seize, rear brakes. Needs to be replaced and greased at last once a year”

Luc G., QC (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Car needed new brakes and rotor”

Kathleen N., OR (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rear, passenger side caliper piston began leaking. Had it replaced with high quality part. No further problems”

Samuel T., AL (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Right rear caliper sticking and causing excessive heat - caught before total failure. Left rear previously failed 2 years ago so knew what to look for. This is an emergency cannot drive more than a few miles issue if it happens”

Edward C., NY (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rear passenger side calliper ceased. I ended up having to replace the rear brakes as well as replace the caliper”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Master cylinder

“Leaking”

Dan T., AZ (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“normal wear on pads”

Anonymous, MB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Because of the caliper failure I had no parking brake at all. Tough in a manual transmission car in a hilly part of the country”

Anonymous, NY (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Parking brake started to work on only one rear wheel. Brake pads, cables were all replaced, but the problem remains”

Dave R., AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Cable failure caused brakes to lock on damaging rotors and pads that had already been replaced and caliper on one side was rendered unserviceable. @ 55000 miles this and other failures - A/C compressor and thermostat added to over $4k of repairs!!!!”

Brian O., MA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Broken cable and rust”

Jean D., QC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Premature brake wear

“brakes don't last long”

Ross R., ON (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Rear brakes wore out faster than front on a front drivecar. Very strange. Dealer unable to explain”

Bob S., AB (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Needed to replace brake pads after only 5,000 miles”

Anonymous, GA (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“I have had issues with the brakes on this car ever since I bought it new in 2005. The always make excessive noise and I have replaced them more than average”

Anonymous, OH (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The brake jam on the rotor scrachting it badly”

Jean D., QC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Shop advised that I change rotors with brake pads”

Kathleen N., OR (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Needed new rotors”

Anonymous, FL (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-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

“The A/C has frozen up and it would be greater than $800 to repair”

Mary A., CA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“A/C compressor failure @ ~90k miles. User forums (Mazda3 and auto A/C specialist forums) confirm this is a common failure on this car at this mileage (many reports @ ~70k-90k). Unclear whether bad compressor design (Panasonic) or lubrication failure”

Ernest J., WI (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Rotor in compressor fused to be immobile--smoke came out. Belt rubbed against immobile spindle”

Anonymous, CA (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“$2000 to repair the compressor and evaporator is more than the car is worth”

Anonymous, CT (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“A/C does not come on all the time”

Anonymous, TX (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Disappointed to have my compressor fail. The cost was over $1,200 for repairs”

Marjorie B., VA (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“ThoUSnds to repair. My daughter drives this car and cannot afford it. Repair shop said completely rusted out. Need an entirely new A/C unit. Entire A/C system taken out. A/C died several years ago but off warranty”

Gayle L., ON (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“A/C stopped working w/o warning, no sign of decline before cessation of A/C”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“at 55000 miles an A/C compressor bearings should not fail - a $1000+ repair ...mazda sux! It is apparently a common failure mode with Mazda 3 & 6 cars from this era 2004-2009”

Brian O., MA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“A/C compressor seized and failed at approx. 100,000 miles while driving in stop and go traffic in Atlanta in July”

Marcin J., IL (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“The compressor needs to be replaced which is a very expensive repair”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Tried everything, took 3 visits to different repair facilities, compressor was replaced, then coolant was overfilled, still suspect I'm going to be hot on the hottest summer days. Not ice cold”

Pamela R., MO (2006 Mazda 3 Touring Unsure)

“Replaced”

Anonymous, BC (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Compressor petered out; caught it before bearing shattered & spread though-out system. Had to replace compressor and refrigerant. ~$1K”

Anonymous, IL (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Automatic climate control

“Had issues on interstate trips, where power was diverted away from a/c to help engine go 7080 mph. Made for a very uncomfortable trip in the summer heat”

Anonymous, SC (2006 Mazda 3)
Electrical failure

“would shut off, have to fiddle with switches to get it back on”

Anonymous, TN (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“leaked out over the winter”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Leaking refrigerant lines”

Clarenc H., TX (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Lost cooling capacity”

Anonymous, BC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The cooler line leaked where it connects to condenser. The line was replaced”

Heikki M., NS (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Clutch replacement

“The clutch wore out faster than I expected”

Dan T., AZ (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Clutch suddenly began slipping. Saw evidence that clutch material was present in clutch housing. Had clutch replaced and now is performing correctly”

Anonymous, IL (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Normal wear and tear. Clutch lasted 150,000 miles”

Nathan M., CA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Mechanic fixed problem”

Anonymous, FL (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Clutch was producing burning smell...needed to be replaced”

Anonymous, NY (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Clutch was slipping. Had it replaced”

Anonymous, MD (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Clutch started slipping badly, replaced”

Todd H., NH (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“CLUTCH FAILED”

Anonymous, OR (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“I got 100,000 miles on the original clutch. Wish the transmission were as reliable”

Charles E., CO (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“clutch was slipping and required replacement”

Anonymous, IL (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Clutch slipping. Replaced”

Anonymous, NM (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Needed a new clutch. Clutch was slipping”

Richard T., CA (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Torque converter

“The Torque Converter feels very old and used now. It makes it feel like the clutch is slipping when it works over time between gears. This is VERY apparent between 1st and 2nd, or rather going into 2nd gear”

Jens N., CA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure Unsure)
Transmission rebuild or replacement

“The stick shift 3rd gear totally failed. It cost me $3500 for a new one. Rebuilt trans. are not available. After driving 1.5 million mile with stick shift cars, this is the first one I have replaced. I would never buy a Mazda again and warn those who”

Charles E., CO (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“the transmission failed at 97,000 KM and was replaced under warranty”

Neil S., ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Shifting sluggish, would not shift into 5th, lurched when shifting into reverse, occasional stall. Dealer replaced transmission control module (TCM) to no avail. Then they installed a used transmission. Still had problems. Then they replaced the speed sensor and that fixed everything”

Anonymous, NY (2006 Mazda 3 S 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)

“factory alarm system failed, and disabled car - making it impossible to start”

Anonymous, AB (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“clock ocassionally loses time. I reset at least once every two months”

Anonymous, DC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The head light are hard to reinstall when they need to be replace. There is no room in the headlight area to get a persons fingers to reclip the wire clips to the back of the bulbs”

Anonymous, TX (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“My left driver side headlight has had problems since I bought the car. Bulb burns out too quickly. Never addressed or recognized by dealer”

Anonymous, CA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure Unsure)

“bulb keep failing and are difficult to change, lens has deteriorated, difficult to aim”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The rear brake lights failed. It turned out that the entire wire harness needed replacement as the wires shorted, were fragile and broken. The wire harness passes through into the trunk- the design itself is poor and prone to problems”

Anonymous, IL (2006 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Right signal will not cancel itself after turning”

Pamela R., MO (2006 Mazda 3 Touring Unsure)
Keyless entry

“The keyless entry system went from working intermittently to not working at all. The problem is not in the remotes but in the car. Non-dealer mechanic cannot access the code; won't pay the dealer's labor rate”

Max S., IL (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Tire pressure monitor

“has always been an issue and always comes back after getting fixed”

Anonymous, GA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 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

CD player

“CD got stuck inside. Cannot be fixed and replacement for a refurbished unit is $600+”

Michael F., CT (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Jammed, ate the CDs. Very expensive to fix”

Anonymous, CA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“CDs are stuck in the disc changer”

Anonymous, DC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Display screen freezes up

“The clock on the display has never worked properly. Constantly looses time”

Anonymous, ON (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring Unsure)
Radio

“Sirius radio failed”

Anonymous, NC (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“AM Radio reception went out”

Gary H., CA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

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

“Pin failed; didn't allow me to get car out of PARK”

Anonymous, RI (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Car would not go into gear. Replaced a part of the clutch that allowed it to work. Cost about $950”

Anonymous, AZ (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Transmission computer

“Design flaw in the transmission places the computer near too much heat. It had to be replaced”

Anonymous, LA (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Shifting sluggish, would not shift into 5th, lurched when shifting into reverse, occasional stall. Dealer replaced transmission control module (TCM) to no avail. Then they installed a used transmission. Still had problems. Then they replaced the speed sensor and that fixed everything”

Anonymous, NY (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Transmission sensor or solenoid

“Transmission sensor caused an unexpected downshift at highway speed and abrupt upshift in city traffic. Each time the check engine light came on. One sensor was replaced without evidence of failure. A second sensor was replaced after indicating failure. No problems for 2 days to date”

Bill J., CA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“I had to replace the transmission turbine pump at around 130,000 miles. I have not had any problems with my 2006 Mazda3 S since replacing this item. This car has been very reliable. I have 164,000 miles on the car to date and it still purrs like a kitten”

Nick B., CA (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Body Integrity

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

What Owners Say

Squeaks or rattles

“Undiagnosed noises from the rear axle and front suspension. Gets worse when it get warm. Has not been fixed”

Anonymous, MI (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“There is a dashboard related rattle that I cannot find”

Greg O., TN (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rattling from rear end that we have been chasing for some time”

Tony R., NV (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Lower control arms, front struts, rear right strut replacements”

Anonymous, MA (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Engine mounts failed”

Anonymous, GA (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“A lot of wind noise from the windows”

Tony R., NV (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-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)

“The check engine light came on and I took the car to the dealership. They kept the car for three days and made various repairs but were unable to determine the cause. It went off by itself but it comes on and stays on. Don't know what the problem is”

Anonymous, MO (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Fuel pump

“It lost pressure? and the car wouldn't start readily so it had to be replaced at the cost of about $1000”

Anonymous, CA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure Unsure)
Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

“Warning light came on. Gas mileage went down a little. Mechanic friend diagnosed as O2 Sensor problem. Found one on Amazon at greatly reduced cost ($108) from dealer cost. Mechanic friend installed for fee of $75. Problem resolved. Gas mileage restor”

C R., TX (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Had difficulty passing inspection due to a faulty O2 sensor. Took 3 trips to mechanic to get light to go off”

Anonymous, NC (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“car ran fine, but "check engine" light led to sensor detection/replacement; big bill; hard to trust that it mattered”

Anonymous, OR (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Minor

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

What Owners Say

Engine computer

“Enigine light on since July, 2013. They have never found any problems and believe the light is the result of a computer glitch”

Craig L., KS (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Engine mounts

“Engine mounts were loose and had dealer tighten them”

Anonymous, MA (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“2 of 3 mounts failed at 85000 miles”

Bruce B., WA (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The passenger-side engine mount is fluid filled. Like many others have experienced with this car (Internet forums), mine deteriorated and failed (leaked the fluid out completely). By design the engine was still secure, but there was pronounced vibration at idle. wasn't inherently”

Anonymous, WI (2006 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“I had to replace the motor mounts on the car at approximately 130,000 miles. The motor mount pads were really soft and eroding away. The compromised original motor mounts were affecting the transmission shifting. Upon replacement, the car has been working great. I have not had any major problems with my 2006 Mazda3 S since”

Nick B., CA (2006 Mazda 3 S 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

Tailgate, hatch or trunk

“Rust around the back tail lights”

Anonymous, NS (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure Unsure)

“Trunk release from inside car no longer functions”

Anonymous, NC (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Driver's side motor for the power window broke”

Anonymous, PR (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“passenger side front window sticks”

Michael H., VA (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Cooling

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

What Owners Say

Thermostat

“The thermostat is much more expensive than American cars and placed at the bottom of the radiator requiring much more labor time to replace”

Bradley T., MO (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

“Engine check light came on for faulty engine temperature. Sensor in thermostat housing had failed”

Marjorie B., VA (2006 Mazda 3 Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Antifreeze leaks

“overheating”

Anonymous, CA (2006 Mazda 3 i 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Overheating

“engine stop working”

Anonymous, CA (2006 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

“My auto just stopped as I was driving. I was lucky it was on a small side street so I was able to push the car to the side and after about 10 minutes the car started again. I was near my mechanic and was able to drive the car there. The alternator and the oxygen sensor were replaced”

Anonymous, PA (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Dead !”

Eileen A., ON (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Car died out of town in heavy traffic and needed to be towed. Repair facility charged just over $1000 to replace 4 coils”

John K., FL (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Starter

“Needed replacement”

Anonymous, NJ (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.0-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

“Had to replace both trans axles. This is the second time. However, they are only about $80 each and usually need replacing at around 100K miles”

Greg M., AZ (2006 Mazda 3 Grand Touring 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
CV joint

“started knocking and cracking like they sometimes do - repaired and replaced at Midas (big mistake). Midas did their best but still not right - need to take it to Mazda Dealer once I can afford it”

Danny B., FL (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Electrical failure

“Control console went "DEAD", and dealership had no explanation except "ok when rebooted."”

Anonymous, OR (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

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

“Engine on this vehicle needed replacement due to cracked cylinder head”

Anonymous, NC (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“The motor threw a rod clear through the block while traveling at 65 mph”

William W., PA (2006 Mazda 3 I 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Exhaust

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

What Owners Say

“Muffler by tail pipe broke off at its connection to the pipe going to the main muffler”

Larry K., NY (2006 Mazda 3 S 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

“Rusted exhaust pipe”

Anonymous, QC (2006 Mazda 3 Unsure 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
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