Beware of Plastic Parts and Oil Filters!
By George Bennett on
2004 Mazda 3 s 4dr Sedan (2.3L 4cyl 5M)
After driving a Protege for 10 years and 250,000 miles, the 3 S seemed like a great car until I used a Jiffy Lube and cracked the poorly designed oil cartridge housing on the car. Mazda says tough luck, but has issued a service bulletin, and I believe reverted back to the cannister versus the cartridge oil filter. It is sad to say that such a nice car can be ruined by poor design - but in my case (and from what I hear) the case of several other Mazda 3 s owners, that you will have to pay $60.00 at the dealership to make sure that your engine does not suffer major damages. I believe the 2005 model also has this type of filter so be prepared!
Change the materials usage and design of the oil filter cartridge housing. It should be a more sturdy and robust design. It is the most commonly "touched" part of a car outside of the gas cap - one would think that they would have thought about that.