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Looking to getting a new car soon and Im seriously looking into getting a mazda 6s or a Mazdaspeed 6. But I really want a reliable car that won't give me any major problems. So from people who own the cars how reliable is a Mazda 6s and a Mazdaspeed 6 as compared to a Honda or Toyota? Thanks in advance.
 

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Compared to Toyota today or 5 years ago?

Because Toyota today has ten times the number of recalls they had just 5 years ago, in Japan (where they are under criminal investigation for hiding significant safety issues they knew about that led to deaths and not issuing recalls that would blemish their reputation) their recalls are up a whopping forty-one times what they were 5 years ago, and most recently their venerable Camry was overtaken by the Ford Fusion (yes, a Ford) as the most reliable mid-sedan available according to both JD Power and Consumer Reports.

So they're not exactly the greatest measuring stick to use thesedays.

But, seriously, the difference thesedays between the #1 and Dead Last in Reliabiltity isn't that great. We're talking a difference of just a couple trips to the shop over the life of the car between buying whatever Manufacturer happens to be at the top of the list today and whatever Manufacturer happens to be at the bottom. Everybody makes a reliable car, the difference is how much you enjoy it when it's not broken (and it WILL break at some point, they all do) and how well you're taken care of when something does break.

And, frankly, Mazda is exceptional at both of those. It might not be at the top of the reliability list, it's usually hanging around the middle and often below even that, (again, the difference between "Average" and "Exceptional" thesedays is less than 1 trip to the shop over the average ownership time), but the car is a hell of alot of more fun than anything you'll find at a Toyota or Honda dealership, and on those very rare occassions I do have to take it in (which, actually, has never been aside from normal service periods where I might have them take a look at something else, never any unscheduled repairs in the past 3 years) I have a much better experience with the dealer and service than I tend to hear about most car owners' experiences.

Is buying a Honda or Toyota gonna keep you out of the shop an extra 1 or 2 times over the next 3-5 years? Chances are, yeah, it will. Is that worth driving a neutered car for the next 5 years? Well, that's up to you.
 

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And don't forget that the Ford Fusion is a close cousin of the Mazda 6. They share the same drivetrain and platform. Now keep in mind that the Fusion won based on initial quality. It may or may not be as reliable down the road. My Hyundai got marked pretty highly on initial quality from everyone but down the road it had issues that led to me purchasing this vehicle.

Instead of relying on the rather nebulous general "reliability" moniker, I would try and find specific issues for each of the cars you're considering. I'm a rather new 6 owner (bought my 2007 6i in Nov 06) but from what I've seen, the clutch may have a judder issue, the clutch goes out earlier than most cars (maybe REALLY early), and the brakes wear down comparatively fast. Also, since I have a recliner made out of the same material as the cloth seats, I am highly suspicious that the interior cloth will look like poo in a few years (just like the recliner does now).

And from my experience, reliability is not nearly as big an issue as how the dealer handles the reliability issues. Make sure you're buying from (or at least servicing through) a dealer who doesn't stop trying to help you right after the sale. It's good to have a car that on average doesn't run into a lot of issues but if you're unlucky enough to get that one built at 4:30PM on Friday and the engine craps out, those Consumer Reports ranking won't mean all that much to you.
 

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This is how I honestly look at any car today, you are always taking a chance on whatever you buy. From a GM Product to a BMW, every car maker sometimes will have issues with their vechicles. In my instance, I originaly got a bad one. But I trusted Mazda to correct the issue, and after months of fighting, mine was solved. But that can happen with any car manufacture. Your best bet is to look at it this way: make sure that you like the car, and ask people here on the Forum about their experience with their cars. I love my new mazda, and have really enjoyed it for the past few weeks.
 

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Reliability is extremely subjective to the individual. That said I see any major auto manufacturer (GM, Ford, Daimler-Chrysler, Toyota, Honda, Subaru, Mazda, VW, BMW, etc..) as producing reliable automobiles. To maximize reliability you have to do preventative maintenance and you can't expect a car thats been driven hard not to have more problems in the future. Still, you can expect to have a problem, or a few that are unexpected. Other things like tires, brakes, and clutches; wearing 'early' is mostly up to the individual driver. I tend to think that since Mazda is a sporty brand, it attracts drivers that would wear these items out earlier. This means you're better off choosing a car you like to drive, than trying to figure out reliability statistics when selecting a car. Picking a good dealer would do you much better.
 

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I have only had my MazdaSpeed 6 for just over two months but I love it! It has had some major repairs but all were covered by the warranty. It is really fun to drive and comfortable. Even with the repairs and possibly more on the way, I am still glad I chose it. The dealer I have dealt with is wonderful and really listens when I tell them what is going on. I had a Jetta and chose not to buy another VW because of my experiences with their service departments and how they treated me. I would definitely buy another Mazda because of my positive experiences with the dealer and how much fun they are to drive. Good luck and I hope you enjoy whichever car you choose!
 

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I have an 04, have not had any issues outside of maintenance with the sole exception of early failure of a small spring in the front brakes. this was not a safety issue, simply made alot of noise when takign slow corners and eventually dug a groove in my rotors (which I subesquently replaced when my pads needed to be replaced).

My mother owns a 2000 626. Never had an issue with it. Her previous car was a 1989 626, no issues beyond general wear and tear for the car's 12 year life. I have also owned a 1992 323, which had no unsual isses for hte year adn a half I owned it.

The only two Mazdas my family has ever had issues with where a 1974 Mazda R-100 and a 2002 Protoge, both of which were tought to play 'roll over and play dead' by their owners (My dad and my sister).

While only the first paragraph actually answeres your question, you can see we've had good luck with our Mazdas.
 

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When buying my car, I had a lot of time before I pulled the trigger so I did a fair amount of research. It's true what others are saying about the difference in reliablility of the highest rated cars and the medium rated cars (where the 6 apparently lies) is less than 1 problem over several years. That being the case, I was free to find the best match based on what I wanted to spend. And the mazda6 provided the best/ most fun driving experience for me (braking, steering, suspension, handling). Plus it had styling that was much better than most. If you like how it drives and how it looks, don't let concerns about reliability hold you back.
 

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I've had my 2006 Mazda 6i Sport for about seven months now and 9100 miles. I purchased it brand new with 75 test miles on it and I've had no problems at all. All I did so far was have the oil changed twice so far at the dealership, and they rotated my tires a few thousand miles ago. In September, I had a Mazdaspeed cold-air intake installed and my car is completely amazing. My gas mileage is exceptional, I never had to have my car in the shop, my clutch is fine and I have experienced no problems with it, my shifting is smooth and easy, the four-wheel disc brakes with ABS are exceptional, the handling is excellent, and the amenities inside are more than sufficient. I hope my car stays highly reliable as it has been so far. I know damn well that I didn't get a car manufactured on a Friday.
 

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My previous car was a 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser. Within 63,000 miles, it blew its transmission, front and rear struts/shocks, ac compressor, wheel bearings. Some interior parts had broken on it as well, and it sometimes wouldn't start due to a problem with the anti-theft system.

I've had my 06 Mazda6i sedan since June 1, 06 and have a little over 16,300 miles on it. The only issue that sent it into the shop was the AC blowing on the windshield when the selector was on 'dash'. They fixed it, and broke a clip in my dash, causing a rattle. The 2nd repair, they fixed the clip. No other visits to the shop other than normal maintenance and modding since. :D
 

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my car is 2 years old and I haven't had any significant issues. So far, purge valve was replaced and i recently had to get a new battery. but even with the bad one, the car would still start, just took a bit longer. Now, i've gotta take it in for a squeak comming from the engine (which i think is the seatbelt tensioner) and the o-rings under the spoiler are starting to come out so they need replaced. Other than that, I've had no real issues.
 

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Now, i've gotta take it in for a squeak comming from the engine (which i think is the seatbelt tensioner)...[/b]
:laugh:
I knew exactly what you meant, but I just had to point this out. :nana:
 

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Like everyone else has said, reliability is not a really good measure to use these days. Back in the early '80s the reliability factor was huge, but not so much any more. I have had my 6s for just under 2 years (35000 miles) and have had very few problems.

To me the important things were that Mazda service treated me well and they gave me a loaner car while the warranty work was completed. The loaner car is part of the Mazda warranty. My previous cars (all Ford) included a shuttle trip to work, but I had to find my own way back to the dealership to pickup the car. Some manufacturers give you a loaner if the repair will take more than 1 day, but Mazda will give you one anytime you ask.

Problems to date:
1) AC blowing through defrost vents regardless of vent selection
2) Rear brake caliper not opening fully causing premature wear of 1 brake pad
3) Alignment (probably caused by a pothole)
 
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I have had my 6s mtx since Jan 3, 2003. It has 48,500 on it. People are amazed that it is as old as it is. It has held up great. My Honda scratched if you looked at it wrong, but my 6 has a great paint job. I may not be a good measure since i am still under warranty. I will usually drop a car as soon as it gets to the 75,000 mark (tired of it, potential problems). I am planning on driving this into the ground. I have had it for 4 yrs and still love to drive it every time i get in. Sure, it has had a couple of recalls and i can't stand how my dealer is reactive (not proactive) to squeeks, shudders and concerns... but, again my dealer sux. I drove more than 5 hours to get it because of how much my dealer sux.

I have not done a lot of mods to it, so it is basically stock. From what I hear, this car only reacts well to a few mods (keep that in mind if you lean that way). If you want something to mod, go get a civic or a mustang (some will disagree w/ me on this). I am considering trying to mod this thing after warranty is up, so I will see how it goes.

My problems (all fixed under warranty):
- brake squeel = brake job at 32k (replaced with factory original parts, so I will have to deal with it out of warranty next time)
- engine misfire (around 18k) = 3 hour appointment... don't know solution, but no repeat

Problems deflected & not covered >:-(
- tried to collect on the throttle body replacement TSB & they said it was the clutch "acting up"! BS! if was the clutch it would be constant. i have the symptoms described in the TSB, but to no avail...

I love my car. good luck in your search.
 

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The 6s is a fairly reliable car. The duratec engine has been around now for some time and has proven itself. The new Speed6 engine hasn't been out for that long so we don't know how reliable it will be. There have been problems from various owners. It seems that most problems are covered under warranty. I know one member had a lot of trouble with his Speed6 and had the dealer switch him to a 6s. He hasn't had any problems with the 3.0 as fas as I know.

But for the most part the Speed6 and 6s are trouble free cars.
 

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All these little things that irk us is what makes the 6 a 6. (Wish I wasn't bobbing my head when I accelerate from a standstill:) :drive:
 

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:laugh:
I knew exactly what you meant, but I just had to point this out. :nana:[/b]
Isn't the seatbelt tensioner in the engine compartment? I believe there is one on each side .... for each seatbelt obviously? So it would sound like the noise is coming from the engine. If its not under the hood ... then i got a different issue?
 

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Isn't the seatbelt tensioner in the engine compartment? I believe there is one on each side .... for each seatbelt obviously? So it would sound like the noise is coming from the engine. If its not under the hood ... then i got a different issue?[/b]
I thought you meant the fanbelt tensioner, which can tend to squeak/squeal when cold and damp. I'd think the seatbelt tensioner would be at the base of the B-pillar on the floorpan, where the seatbelts originate from.
 
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