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Mazdaspeed owners?

My daughter and sil are looking to buy something in the 25k range. I've read good reviews of the Mazdaspeed and am wondering if anyone out there has any experience with them? It looks like a good buy for what you get.

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Old 02-07-2008, 03:12 PM
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I've had my 2007 MazdaSpeed3 since 2/21/07 and have 15k on the odometer and have loved every minute driving this car! Very fun and practical, too. I run AMSOIL 5/30 in the engine and AMSOIL 75/90 in the gearbox and I'm getting 28-32mpg! The car requires premium (93 octane) because of the turbo, but it's well worth it. No torque steer and very comfortable for 4 adults. This is my favorite new car I've ever purchased!
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Old 02-07-2008, 04:09 PM
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My daughter and sil are closet speed freaks and since he is in med school for the next 3 years and she is a teacher, their budget is somewhat limited. They have a 2001 Xterra now and the mileage is killing them so that mileage is sure to look good for them.
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Old 02-07-2008, 04:34 PM
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If they like fast cars that handle well and are also practical (can carry a lot!), they will love the car. I bought a set of 16" steel rims and Bridgestone Revo 1's for the crummy MI winters and the car goes through anything! The interior is nice and comfortable and the seats provide good support. I put a bra on the front for highway driving since I read that the paint tends to chip and I don't have any chips. The car looks nice and I'm very, very happy with it! It's as much fun to drive as my 911, and that says quite a bit!
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Old 02-07-2008, 05:10 PM
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No Mazda speed but a Protege5 with 211,000km and a Mazda3. Both are very good cars. the Protege5 has frustratingly developed a bit of rust but other wise has been extremely reliable and very cheap to maintain.
Old 02-07-2008, 05:17 PM
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BTW, the car is well built and doesn't squeak, rattle or shake and I've put 15,000 miles on it and am on my 2nd MI winter in the car.
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Old 02-07-2008, 05:19 PM
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I called them and told them to watch the video clip from roadandtrack.com. They already had and are going to check one out next week. My daughter was 3 when we got the 930 and 9 when we got the 356 so she knows cars. At least modded Porsches.
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Old 02-07-2008, 05:53 PM
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great choice, fun, fast enough and is huge in there with the seat folded down.

My bro has one with the pseudo sportomatic, or whatever the auto you can shift for yourself is called
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:34 PM
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I think it is called a sportomatic, and it's what i have. Although i "think" mazdaspeeds only come in manuals. But either way it's a fantastic car. I know most people are shocked to get a ride in my car and find out it's a sub 20k car. I've got 3.5k on the clock, it's averaging 30-31 mpg (keep the tires inflated properly or that figure drops fast), and it's a very solid handling car. I assume the MS version is all of that and then some, other than the obvious extra 100hp.
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Old 02-07-2008, 08:02 PM
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I've been looking at any and everything new out there for $60K and less.

The sad thing? Nothing I can get even remotely excited about....

Buy any "washing machine" you or your daughter like...they are all about the same.
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Old 02-07-2008, 08:18 PM
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The MazdaSpeed3 only comes in a manual 6spd. The shifting was a little too sloppy for my taste so I replaced the rubber bushings with billet aluminum shift bushings and it shifts much better now. I can't imagine another car near the same price that's as much fun to drive and the MazdaSpeed. My wife and I had our CX-7 smashed last summer when a guy ran a red light and hit us and the dealership gave my wife a "regular" Mazda3 until hers was repaired and we both liked that car, too.
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Old 02-08-2008, 03:42 AM
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Mazda zooms to success
Quirky Japanese carmaker becomes fastest growing U.S. brand
Bryce G. Hoffman / The Detroit News

The bosses at Mazda Motor Corp.'s U.S. headquarters could only chuckle when they learned the automaker's CX-9 crossover was a finalist for the North American Truck of the Year award.

It was the third time in five years a Mazda had made the top-vehicle list but they had yet to take home the prize. And their sleek new crossover was not very truck-like.

Always a bridesmaid, they joked, never a bride.

Advertisement

"If we win it this time," vowed Mazda product development chief Robert Davis, "I'll wear a wedding dress."

Davis made good on his promise this week when he brought the trophy home to his troops in Irvine, Calif., along with the Sport/Utility of the Year award from Motor Trend magazine and another month of record sales.

That kind of quirkiness has long defined Mazda and helped make it the fastest-growing full-line automotive brand in the United States last year, when everything seemed to go right for Japan's most idiosyncratic marque.

Mazda racked up record sales in the United States and worldwide in 2007. On Wednesday, it reported another profitable quarter and is expected to post record earnings for a seventh straight year when full-year results are released in April.

Mazda's success has come from charting its own course, offering polarizing products that people either love or hate, focusing on performance more than fuel economy and maintaining a commitment to the Wankel engine -- which uses a rotor instead of pistons -- long after the rest of the industry turned its back on the design.

Mazda's net profit increased to $627 million in the year ended March 31, 2007, from $568 million in 2006 and $427 million in 2005. The black ink puts it in stark contrast to Ford Motor Co., which owns a controlling stake in Mazda. Ford continues to lose U.S. market share and reported a $2.7 billion loss for 2007. That makes Mazda's contribution to Ford's coffers -- $204 million last year, up from $168 million in 2006 -- all the more welcome.

But Mazda provides Ford with something more valuable than cash. Mazda-designed architecture underlies most of Ford's new vehicles. The company has become a major part of Ford's research and development efforts, as well as the model for its new, global product development system.

"Mazda has been a very important ingredient," Ford CEO Alan Mulally told The Detroit News in a recent interview. "Clearly, their experience in design and manufacturing and driving customer acceptance of smaller vehicles is a real asset."

Ford's relationship with Mazda is not a one-way street. Mazda executives say their success has only been possible because of the economies of scale its relationship with Ford yields.

"We could never have done a car like the CX-9 without Ford," Davis said. "We wouldn't even have a V-6 engine."

Most important of all, analysts say, Ford let Mazda be Mazda again.

"Ford integrated them, but let them be what they had been -- and not just another brand," said Michael Robinet, vice president of global vehicle forecasts for CSM Worldwide in Northville. "They have rediscovered what their role in the market is, and that is building strong entries that offer aggressive design and affordable performance."
The other car company

At its best, Mazda has always marched to the hum of its own rotary engine.

The company began as a cork manufacturer in Hiroshima, entering the automotive business with a unique three-wheeled truck in 1931. Its first passenger cars were just as quirky, as was its decision in the 1960s to embrace the Wankel rotary engine.

By the 1990s, however, Mazda had lost its way. It was trying to out-Toyota Toyota Motor Corp. with a series of blandly conventional me-too cars in a bid to increase volumes at home and abroad. Ford, which had already allied itself with Mazda, intervened to save the company from bankruptcy in 1996.

The decision was controversial in Japan, where many resented the idea of an American manufacturer taking over a Japanese company. But Ford allowed Mazda to once again produce the kind of sporty, distinctive cars that have long been its strength.

Having the right products is only part of Mazda's success story.

"It's also been the confidence of the management in Japan in North America, their investment in the North American market," said James O'Sullivan, president and CEO of Mazda North America. "It's getting the dealership network aligned, too. It's been significant changes in the culture. It's the product lineup. And it's getting on the consideration list of consumers over an extended period of time."

According to many insiders, O'Sullivan is one of Ford's unsung heroes -- a former Lincoln brand manager who, along with Mazda President and CEO Hisakazu Imaki, deserves much of the credit for the brand's recent success.

"They were the guys," said Mike Rocchi, former chair of the Mazda dealer council and president of Faulkner Mazda in Philadelphia. When Imaki took over in 2003, one of his first actions was to announce a radical reorientation of the brand, shifting its focus from Japan to North America. It was a well-timed move, considering that the Japanese car market was collapsing.

O'Sullivan was tapped to lead the effort. He inherited a dealership network that was on the verge of revolt and made fixing it his top priority.

"We had one of the weakest distribution networks in the United States," he said, noting that close to 70 percent of Mazda's dealers were also pedaling other brands out of the same lot.

O'Sullivan offered long-term rent assistance to dealers who agreed to make Mazda their exclusive brand. Backed by Imaki, he also promised them that the needs of U.S. consumers would factor heavily in future product plans.

Today, over 50 percent of Mazda's dealers in the United States are exclusive to the brand.
Staying on message

Analysts say Ford could learn a lot more from Mazda than just how to build small cars.

Aside from BMW and its "ultimate driving machine" catchphrase, no other automaker has stuck with a marketing message the way Mazda has stuck to "Zoom-Zoom," according to Jim Hall of 2953 Analytics LLP in Birmingham.

"They have been consistent in their message and have consistently delivered products that back it up," he said. "It isn't just the product either. It's how they positioned it in people's minds."

Mazda does not just promise to put the soul of a sports car into everything it makes; it actually delivers on that promise, Hall said. It even did the improbable, bringing to market a sporty, cool minivan in the form of the Mazda5.

Even its older products like the entry-level Mazda3 remain fresh. This 5-year-old design accounted for much of Mazda's U.S. sales gains last year. Attracting younger buyers is a real challenge for most automakers, but Mazda is second only to Toyota's youth-oriented Scion brand in the median age of its customers -- 43.

Mazda's sales were also helped by the introduction of two new crossovers -- the CX-7 and CX-9 -- that have taken the brand into entirely new segments of the market.

The CX-9 was the first car that Mazda's North American team designed from scratch. This by-Americans-for-Americans approach has been a major success for Mazda, taking the brand into a new segment of the market and almost single-handedly lifting its average transaction price.

"It's allowed us to expand the brand," O'Sullivan said. "We were able to change where we play in the market. We're selling a tremendous amount of the Grand Touring edition, which is an over-$40,000 car."

The CX-9 is bringing new customers into Mazda's showrooms. More importantly, O'Sullivan said, it is bringing old customers back.

One of Mazda's biggest weaknesses was that it had nowhere to send customers who outgrew its mid-market vehicles like the Mazda5 and Mazda6. There was the edgy RX-8, but that has always been a niche vehicle with limited appeal.

"We haven't had a relevant product for them to go into," O'Sullivan said. "Now we have a full showroom."

That showroom will get a big boost later this year when Mazda introduces an all-new version of its Mazda6 sedan. Significantly, the U.S. version will be larger and offer more backseat legroom than the international version recently unveiled in Japan.

But even with that, O'Sullivan acknowledged that it will be a real challenge for Mazda to maintain its momentum through 2008.

"As we go forward this year, we're being very humble," he said. "We're pleased with the trends. But this year is going to be a very challenging year for everyone."

You can reach Bryce Hoffman at (313) 222-2443 or bhoffman@detnews.com.
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Old 02-08-2008, 04:05 AM
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When I replace my 9000 Aero, the Mazdaspeed 3 will be at the top of my list. Not only is it fast, but the hatchback design is amazingly practical. After owning a Saab 900, 9000, and Protege5, I don't know why anyone would drive a sedan. It's amazing the amount of stuff you can cram into a small hatchback car.

I've been very impressed in my in-law's Mazda 3. Despite being a base model automatic, it has a smooth and rev-happy motor, controlled but comfortable ride, great steering feel, and incredible build quality for the money. Not a single issue, except for an encounter with a deer.
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Old 02-08-2008, 08:08 AM
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Definately a nifty car - quick and practical without busting the wallet.

I've got a Mazda6 S wagon - the bigger cousin of that car. This is a surprisingly good handling car with decent brakes and a 220 hp engine. I've got 60K on it now, no rattles, no squeaks, interior looks like new. This is the 5speed auto with the sport shift (manual auto mode).

I sold our last Mazda (MX-6 V6) with 290,000 miles on the clock. I did have to put a clutch in around 275,000. Ran into the kid that bought it a couple of months ago, car has 310,000 still running strong. Little smoke on first start in the morning (valves have never been done) but still runs strong, drives great and passes emissions.

I'd buy another Mazda after my last two and the Mazdaspeed would DEFINATELY be one I'd consider!

angela
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Old 02-08-2008, 10:30 AM
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I have an '07 speed 3...real happy with mine too.

Here is another thread that was started a while back with some more info on the Mazda3 / Mazdaspeed3

Mazda 3 sport vs. Mazdaspeed3
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Old 02-08-2008, 10:33 AM
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If I were in the market for a car in that price range seems it would be a good choice. I hope they get one. When my sil gets out of med school they're going to buy both of my Porsches. They want to keep them in the family which I am all for it. I will then get to upgrade to possibly a 997 Turbo.

thanks for the link. Sounds like a great car.

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Last edited by Les Paul; 02-08-2008 at 10:41 AM..
Old 02-08-2008, 10:35 AM
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