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blog large image - Is the Mazda 3 a Reliable Car?

Is the Mazda 3 a Reliable Car?

Table of Contents

  1. Mazda 3 Reliability
  2. Owner satisfaction
  3. Easy to Maintain
  4. Fuel efficiency
  5. Safety Features
  6. Performance
  7. Sleek Design (Interior and Exterior)
  8. Longevity and Value
  9. So, can you rely on the Mazda 3?

Considering the Mazda 3 for your next car? Our guide to Mazda 3 reliability will walk you through everything you need to know. Find out how the Mazda 3 stacks up when it comes to durability, owner satisfaction, fuel economy and more.

Mazda 3 Reliability

Is the Mazda 3 reliable? The short answer: absolutely.

In Australia, no car ever becomes a bestseller for more than a decade, let alone two, if it didn’t meet the market’s extreme demands for durability and dependability. The Mazda 3 has rarely been left off the top 10 most popular cars in Australia since its introduction in the early 2000s. Its stablemate, the Mazda CX-5, has also consistently made the “most popular” lists as well.

Compared to similar sized hatch and sedans, the Mazda 3 has consistently received high marks across the board when it comes to reliability, performance and fuel efficiency. In fact, for four years in a row, Consumer Reports gave the Mazda 3 a perfect 5/5 for reliability.

But what makes the Mazda 3 reliable? And why does it continue to be a favourite compact car for Australians? Below we look at 7 reasons why Mazda 3 reliability ranks so high.

1. Owner satisfaction

The Mazda 3 is internationally recognised as a reliable and high value-for-money car. It even won World Car Design of the Year 2020. But it's not just car enthusiasts and professional reviewers that celebrate the Mazda 3. Everyday car owners are also satisfied, with average reviews consistently over 4 out of 5 stars on popular review sites such as Car Sales, and Product Review.

Mazda 3 owners cite safety, versatility, a modern infotainment system and a fun driving experience as reasons they love the car. Others describe the Mazda 3 as "extremely reliable" and report having few problems with their Mazda 3, even after many years of ownership. Mazda has a good history with owner satisfaction, across the board. In a survey conducted by Roy Morgan, over 95% of Mazda owners said they were 'very' or 'fairly' satisfied with their car.

2. Easy to Maintain

Mazda 3s, like the rest of the Mazda product lines, are relatively easy and affordable to maintain. Easy maintenance means more than just having less of a headache every time you need your oil changed or air-conditioner serviced. It can mean the difference between actually maintaining your vehicle and keeping costs lower over the years.

The simplicity and elegance of the Mazda 3 design means servicing is often quick, efficient and effective. The average annual repair cost ranges from $320 to $370, with maintenance costs averaging $5,409 over the first 10 years of ownership. In addition, Mazda offers a 5 year unlimited km warranty and 5 year premium roadside assistance to Mazda owners, giving them extra peace of mind.

easy to maintain

3. Fuel efficiency

A reliable car will get you where you need to go, without guzzling through your bank account. When it comes to fuel efficiency, the Mazda 3 offers some pretty impressive numbers. Depending on the engine, transmission and model you go for, you could be looking at 5.5L per 100km. Even the thirstiest variant offers decent efficiency at 6.6L per 100km on combined transmission. The Mazda 3 is available with ULP and hybrid/ULP fuel types– choose the hybrid Mazda 3 and you could save even more time and money filling up.

4. Safety Features

The Mazda 3 not only meets Australian safety standards, but handily exceeds them with a range of different advanced safety features. The 2022 Mazda 3 comes equipped with the following features:

  • Mazda i-ACTIVSENSE®

  • Smart Brake Support

  • Blind Spot Monitoring

  • Rear Cross-Traffic Alert

  • Lane Departure Warning

  • Lane Keep Assist 

  • Mazda Radar Cruise Control with Stop & Go

  • Automatic LED Headlights with High Beam Control

  • Rain-sensing Windshield Wipers 

  • Driver Attention Alert

Even earlier Mazda 3 models sport a formidable set of safety features, including highly rated crash crumple zones. In fact, the Mazda 3 has received a “Very Safe” rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for several years running, which means even older models can be safer compared to newer ones from other manufacturers.

5. Performance

The Mazda 3 is aimed at drivers that appreciate the finer things in life but also need a reliable, fuel-efficient car that can keep up with the demands of everyday driving. The Mazda 3 delivers excellent performance and formidable specs across the board, especially for a vehicle in its price range. 

Its 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine puts out 186 horsepower, which is more than sufficient for the tasks this utilitarian car is expected to perform. Its suspension is also spot-on, allowing a better than reasonable level of comfort even on rough, unprepared roads. The power steering feels natural and sporty. In contrast, clunky power steering systems are a common issue with other compact cars. But the Mazda 3 maintains the intuitive kodo design that the Mazda brand is known for, making the driving experience second to none.


6. Sleek Design (Interior and Exterior)

The interior and exterior of the Mazda 3 have often been described as similar to that of luxury vehicles belonging to a completely different price bracket from where the value-oriented Mazda 3 belongs.

In contrast to many other value-oriented vehicles on the Australian market, the Mazda 3 features sleek styling reminiscent of European luxury cars that are priced well above the Mazda 3’s category. The proportions and general aesthetics of the Mazda 3 also manage to hit that sweet spot of “timeless” and “contemporary” that will likely keep a new car from looking dated in 10 years. Indeed, many well-maintained Mazda 3 model years from the early 2000s are still on the road and could hardly be thought of as “dated-looking” in contrast to many other crossover models from that era.

7. Longevity and Value

The Mazda 3 is a durable car that holds its value over time, better than most vehicles in the compact car class. Motor Trend scored the Mazda 3 a 9/10 for value, indicating that the car continues to perform well and retains its value over time. Starting from $26,340, the new Mazda 3 is priced competitively while offering excellent value. Its extra capacity, power, safety features, affordable luxury, and fun driving experience all add up to a package that’s simply irresistible to many Australian drivers.

So, can you rely on the Mazda 3?

Since Australians use their cars day in, day out, it makes sense that reliability is such an important factor when purchasing a new car. Whether you need a good car that can take you to and from work everyday, or a compact hatch that sidesteps common problems faced by other small cars, the Mazda 3 is a reliable choice.

Got more questions about Mazda 3 reliability? Ask our friendly team at Melville Mazda, or book a test drive with us to see if the Mazda 3 is a good fit for your needs.