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Hello all,

I know there is scattered information everywhere about installing paddle shifters on Sport and Touring Mazda 6s. After reading as much information as I was able to find online, and going to a dealership to get part numbers from a 2016 Grand Touring (got a vin number from autotrader lol), I bit the bullet and ordered the parts.

Disclaimer: I am not responsible if anything breaks on your car. This is a pretty simple upgrade, so don't worry, nothing should break (Except those little black tabs :mad:) if you follow the steps.

PARTS:
Wiring: (BNK8-66-4M2) https://www.mazdaswag.com/oem-parts/mazda-wire-bnk8664m2/?c=aT01NDE5MzM1NSZyPTEw
Rear cover: (GJS2-32-049) https://www.mazdaswag.com/oem-parts/mazda-rear-cover-gjs232049/?c=aT01NDQyNDA1NSZyPTM=
Paddle Shifters: (BHT1-66-3P0) https://www.mazdaswag.com/oem-parts/mazda-paddle-switch-bht1663p0/?c=aT01NDE5MzM1NSZyPTY=
Bolts: Two options, local harware store, or Mazda ones. You need 4 bolts total.
-A: (GJS2-32-750) https://www.mazdaswag.com/oem-parts/mazda-paddle-switch-screw-gjs232750/?c=aT01NDQyNDA1NSZyPTg=
-B: #10-32 x 1/2 in. Round-Head Combo from your local hardware store. Mine: (http://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-10-32-x-1-2-in-Round-Head-Combo-Drive-Stainless-Steel-Machine-Screw-3-Piece-814391/204274805)

I decided to order everything at the same place to keep things simple. You may or may not find those part cheaper in other websites. My total cost was $180.44 before shipping.
The bolts I ended up buying at the local hardware store. Paid $1.18 for the pack of 4
NOTE I can only confirm this parts work perfectly for the 2016 Mazda 6 Touring, and most likely work on the 2016 Sport. Do your research if you do not have a 2016!


TOOLS:
21mm socket - To remove the steering wheel nut
10mm socket - To remove battery negative terminal
Flathead screwdriver
Phillips head screwdriver
Cutting Pliers
Blue Threadlocker




1. Loosen the airbag. At this point my car is on, so I can easily turn the steering wheel.
--- A: Use the Phillips screwdriver to push the tabs in the back of the steering wheel. There are 3, two on the sides, and one in the bottom. Picture below is for one of the side ones.
--- B: There is no need to use excessive force, as just pushing the screwdriver in will push the tab, and you will see the airbag come out a little.
--- C: Once the airbag is loose, DO NOT REMOVE IT YET, make sure the wheels are pointing straight, and turn off the car.




2. Remove negative battery terminal. SUPER IMPORTANT as we are messing with the airbag. You do not want it to go off while you are working on this.
DO NOT plug the battery back in without the airbag in place, this will most likely cause a check engine light that cannot be easily erased. Read about this on my online research


3. Once battery is unplugged, time to remove the airbag.
--- A: There are 3 plugs to remove, the highlighted green one is a ground, which pulls straight out.
--- B: The 2 red highlighted ones are the important ones. You can see a back tab on top of each one, you will need to use a small flathead screwdriver to pull it up slightly, as pictured.
--- C: Once the black tabs are extended, both entire plugs will pull off with you hands. They will take a little bit of force, but they come off. I DO NOT suggest you use anything other than your hands
--- D: Pull the airbag off, and set it aside, don't throw it around or put it on the floor to step on it lol. Back seat for me.




4. Take out the steering wheel
--- A: Unplug the white connector, highlighted in red
--- B: Take the 21mm socket and remove the main bolt. You will need to hold the steering wheel so it doesn't turn when you start putting pressure on the bolt.
--- C: Pull off the steering wheel. Note the airbag plug stays on the car




5. Remove the back cover of the steering wheel by pinching the 4 plastic tabs in red below. I did it as you see in the picture, putting pressure in the back with one hand, and used a screwdriver in the other hand to push down each side of each tab. (Thinking about it now, you can probably just use some pliers)




6. Remove the Steeering wheel controls to change the wiring
--- A: Pull off the plastic connector highlighted in pink
--- B: Lightly pull the tall plastic tab highlighted in green, and push the control out a little so it is not locked. (This is the tab the a lot of people break. Don't worry if it does)
--- C: Use a flathead screwdriver to put pressure on the two red plastic tabs and pull them out. This ones are really tight in there, so you will use a little bit of force. Put the tip of the screwdriver right on the base of the tab, so you don't break anything else.
--- D: Once those 3 are out, the control comes off.
--- E: Do the same to remove the other side




7. Switch the wiring
--- A: Cut the two zip ties highlighted in green with the cutting pliers
--- B: Unplug the blue connector and plug in the new one. Then unplug the gray connector and plug in the new one. (One at a time to make sure we don't plug the wrong cables)
--- C: The new wires come with 2 new zip ties to replace the ones you just cut out. Put them in.




8. Put the controls back on the steering wheel, and plug back in the white plastic tabs highlighted in red in place. Note I had not put mine back on the picture below.




9. Put the back cover on
--- A: First put the paddles on the back cover, and route the cable along the path, highlighted in red.
--- B: Put the complete back cover on the steering wheel with pressure, the 4 plastic tabs will click
--- C: Use the 4 screws you purchased, put a little bit of threadlock in each one and tighten the paddles with 2 bots on each side





10. Put steering wheel back on the car
--- A: Connect the white connector highlighted in red, this is the new one for the paddle shifters
--- B: Put the steering wheel back on the car, use some threadlock on the bolt and tighten.
--- C: Connect the white connector highlighted in green back on the car, and make sure the ground and two wires for the airbag are outside, like the picture
--- D: Make sure the steering wheel bolt is reeeeaaallly tight. I did not find the torque number needed, so I just made sure that bolt is tight in there, use those muscles.




11. Put the airbag back on the steering wheel
--- A: Connect the ground cable
--- B: Connect the two airbag connectors back on, and press the black tabs back down. The connectors are color coordinated, so plug the right ones in.
--- C: Push the airbag back in place with pressure. No battery means the horn is not going to go off lol

12. Plug the battery back in and go enjoy those paddles!
 

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Thanks for the awesome write-up, this will be my spring project!
 

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During all of your research, did you happen to come upon the part # for the trim pieces that cover around the buttons on the wheel? I had a 2014 Mazda3 GT and liked the look of the faux carbon fiber trim on the steering wheel and the 6 has that ugly plain black plastic. Great write-up by the way, I can't wait to do this to my car and your post will definitely help.


Also, I saw in other how-to's on the internet for this that people were buying a new steering wheel bolt because they said you should not re-use the existing one. Have you seen this? Do you have any concerns about re-using the existing bolt?
 

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Very nice write up, can't believe I just saw this! I also have done this mod and can confirm instructions are exactly the same for earlier gen3s, I have a 2014. One thing to watch for is changing part numbers, I noticed that the wiring harness and paddles seem to change part numbers every year/2 or so.

also for future reference all the important torque numbers can be found here, courtesy of @Byakuya

http://forum.mazda6club.com/3rd-gen/305890-2014-full-interactive-workshop-manual.html

torque is 31-39ft-lbs. this is for a new bolt with thread locker. I used a new steering wheel bolt to be on the safe side.

During all of your research, did you happen to come upon the part # for the trim pieces that cover around the buttons on the wheel? I had a 2014 Mazda3 GT and liked the look of the faux carbon fiber trim on the steering wheel and the 6 has that ugly plain black plastic. Great write-up by the way, I can't wait to do this to my car and your post will definitely help.
from doing this mod it looks like you need to replace the whole button unit, the cover looks to be integrated/ replaced as whole assembly.
 

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from doing this mod it looks like you need to replace the whole button unit, the cover looks to be integrated/ replaced as whole assembly.

That's kinda what I was thinking based on a quick parts search but thought it was worth asking. Not sure it is worth the money for the whole part just to get the trim piece. Maybe a decal of some sort would work the same.
 

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I added paddles to my 2014 Touring about 2 years ago. While I don't use them a lot, I do like having them for the occasional run through the twisties or a quick downshift. The nice thing is that you don't need to be in manual mode to manually select gears.

Whether it's installing the nav system, the Homelink mirror, or the paddle shifters, Mazda is great about making it easy to add accessories only found on the higher trim levels and packages.
 

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Finally did mine today. Didn't break any clips, used a hair dryer to help free up the steering wheel controls.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

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Just did mine today. Thank you so much for the great instructions! Everything worked perfectly. Was a bit nervous trying to get the airbag off (getting the bottom peg off was the hardest) but it ended up not being a problem. Of course I broke one of the plastic tabs that secures the control modules to the wheel, but like you said there is no way those guys are coming loose.
 

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As it stands now, I plan on buying a 2017.5 6 Touring in the next week or so. Once I do, I would like to add paddle shifters. So, doing a little research on this and have some questions, if anyone can help.

The writeup here is great, and helps a lot. But, it looks like the steering wheel and associated cruise/switches and electronics changed in 2017. So, the list of parts will not be the same for my car.

It looks like the aforementioned wiring harness is now the same for all - w/wo heat/adapt cruise/paddles. But, the Cruise Control Switches are listed as different between those w/paddles and w/o paddles. So, at this point I'm assuming that some of the wiring which was included in the harness up to MY2016, is now associated with the switches - leaving the harness part number the same for all, while now there are different cruise/switches depending on with/or without paddles.

If anyone has any experience adding paddles to the 2017/2017.5 model, then I would be interested to know what you learned.

Otherwise, I will go ahead and order the parts based on my assumption above, and find out once it's all taken apart.
 

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Thread bump...

So I just did this mod to my 2014 Touring. It works great as has been reported and having the ability to quickly and intuitively make a couple downshifts in a hurry is worth the price imo.

The only thing that gave me fits was getting the airbag off. Looking at the how-to here and another YouTube video regarding a CX-5 (but with an identical steering wheel) it appeared you need to have the steering wheel rotated so that the service holes were at the top for access. You then insert a Philips head screwdriver and by simply pushing the airbag it would release itself. I tried this for about 15 minutes, but for the life of me couldn't figure out what I was supposed to be fishing around for. If you reference the factory service they show a different method. You actually go in at more of angle leaving the steering wheel straight and level. For anyone else tackling this, see the snippet below from the manual to get an idea of what you're fishing around for. I used a long 3/16" allen key to find and push the tensioners loose.

Once I got the airbag off everything went just like in the how-to. I was able to get the paddle shifters installed in no time. I did break one of the clips everyone talks about though. After reinstallation you would never be able to tell.
 

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How much did everything cost? ^^

I would like to do this, but the installation seems a little overwhelming for me. It may have to do with English being my second language, though, I can read and understand everything in that writeup, you don't see it in your mind as if it was in your native language, is not as clear as you guys see it I suppose.

I'm a much better visual learner, all I need is to see it done once, whether in person or video and I can repeat it many times. Pictures take still moments of the install, for me, is not enough.
 

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How much did everything cost? ^^

I would like to do this, but the installation seems a little overwhelming for me. It may have to do with English being my second language, though, I can read and understand everything in that writeup, you don't see it in your mind as if it was in your native language, is not as clear as you guys see it I suppose.

I'm a much better visual learner, all I need is to see it done once, whether in person or video and I can repeat it many times. Pictures take still moments of the install, for me, is not enough.
If you follow the links on the first page and get everything but the screws from Mazdaswag.com your total should be roughly $180. I would recommend getting the 10/32 x 1/2" screws from Lowes or your local hardware store along with some blue loctite (if you don't already have some). Do some searching here about paddle shifter retrofitting and you'll find a youtube video with a guy doing the same to his CX-5. It was a little more involved than ours once he got into the wheel, but it does show the overall process as a video.

It seems like there are quite a few steps, but similar to other factory options in this car, Mazda has made things very much plug and play. There's no splicing or cutting wires, the new wiring harness is the right length and everything buttons back like it should.

As I mentioned above, the only issue I had was figuring out how to get the airbag off. Once I understood the tensioner clips needed to move towards the center of the wheel it popped off easily. The rest of the installation went as it's written here - if you follow the steps on this walk-through it goes pretty quickly.

Only other thing I would add is to be sure you have all the right tools before you start. In addition to what this how-to lists I also had a 1/2" breaker bar (made removing the steering wheel nut much easier), electrician's scissors (any snips will work really), 3/16" allen key (to get to those tensioner clips) and a torque wrench (I set mine to 35ft-lbs).
 

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Hello.

The 2017 model has a different steering wheel, so we need other parts. I've attached a picture with the steering wheel that I am interested in.

Do you know the part number for the paddles/wheel cover and wire harness for the 2017 model?

Or, someone that has a 2017 model and factory installed paddles, can send me the VIN to try to identify the parts?

Thanks in advance.
 

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Maybe someone could do this modification in a Mazda 6 sport 2018?
I have seen some videos and some cases they need to change the clockspring and add 2 cables between the clockspring and the StarStop Unit.
Greetings
 
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