I am a commuter but also a father with 2 smaller children and a wife. Therefore, I needed something reliable that would handle the challenges of our lives. With all the hoopla about this car, I expected to get almost 200,000 miles or 12 years of this vehicle, which I had purchased used at 30,000 miles for $12,000 almost 7 years ago (2008). While the first four years were non eventful, the following three were very painful. Specifically, the car would unexplainably turn off or, more commonly, just not start. I changed the battery, everything. I brought it to my mechanic; nothing. I needed reliability and this car was unreliable.
I thought for a while that maybe this was a one shot experience. Perhaps. However, I found on the web similar stories of Mazda 3s from 2005 which suddenly don't start. This makes me wonder. At 143,000, I chose to give up. I am selling the car via a trade in to a dealer and getting a 2005 Prius with 112K miles.
I owned my 2005 Mazda3i for just over a year before it was totaled. I'm still mourning the loss of this car & with any luck will purchase another soon. I bought my mazdda3 used with 100,000 miles and drove it for 22,000 more. This car is extremely reliable, never had any problems with it (which is great since it had been in 2 minor accidents before I got it). Gas mileage was excellent -mostly highway driving usually got around 30 mpg which is great for a college student's budget! My only complaint (aside from the lack of any real space needed when I was moving) was that around 110,000 miles it began to shake when it idled, before that it was smooth sailing. You can't go wrong buying this car
My mazda3 was a shiftable automatic, which is a fun feature I havn't seen in other cars that I looked at.
This car could use more back seat leg room, or more room in general. Definitely not a car for anyone who has frequent backseat riders.
2005 Mazda 3 Sedan SP23 Special Edition 4dr Sedan (2.3L 4cyl 5M)
I bought my car in 2005 new with 33 miles on it. I love my car!! Today it has 191,000 and not a single problem with it! I have kept up with the oil changes and have done some work, changed belts, plugs, ect. just as a preventative. I put gas in it, change the oil, change the tires and drive the crap out of it! I'm not easy on cars, as you can tell from the 191,000 miles on it in 6 years! I recently have been thinking about trading it in for an SUV, but just can't part with my awesome car yet!
heated leather seats, bose system, the power for a 4 cyl. gas mileage
windows whistle just a little when you go faster than 95 mph... haha!