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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
120,003 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Mazda Tribute suspension problems

suspension problem

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2005 Mazda Tribute Owner Comments (Page 4 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #28

Oct 062014

Tribute 4WD 4-cyl

  • 102,000 miles


Right rear wheelhouse has rust and corrosion at 102,000 miles, and the strut mounting is completely rusted away from the frame making the car undrivable. The Mazda dealership will not fix as it affects the frame and they do not want the liability. There are many complaints of this very issue on the NHTSA website and others for the 2005. In addition, Mazda issued a recall in 2014 for the 2001-2004 Tributes.

- Perrysburg, OH, USA

problem #27

Oct 142014

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • 146,000 miles
Right rear wheelhouse has completely rusted out at 146,000 miles, and the strut is disconnected from the frame. Mazda has denied any responsibility for this issue and offered no assistance despite the fact that there are hundreds of complaints of this very issue on the NHTSA website, and despite the fact that the 2001-2004 Tributes were recalled and repaired for corrosion issues. The mechanic and collision repair center said they have never seen rust this bad in the same area of makes of vehicles. The collision repair center also stated that this is a $4,000-$6,000 repair that the owner should not be stuck with as it is a manufacture defect. They manufactured the 2005 Ford escape frame in the same plant and they share the same problem. This occurred while I was traveling down the highway at 70mph and the shock broke free right behind my sons carseat, the shock was touching the inner plastic. Luckily I pulled over to find out what the noise was. Mazda seems to have no concern for their customers safety. Customer beware.... and if you have a child at least put them on the drivers side for some safety. Lets all hope Mazda will stand up for their defective product........

- Bridgman, MI, USA

problem #26

Sep 232014

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • 106,780 miles
Entire right (passenger) rear wheel well rusted away, including the shock mount.

- North Haledon, NJ, USA

problem #25

Sep 102014

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 156,000 miles


The framework underneath and around the vehicle's rear passenger tire has rotted away, and the shock has penetrated the wheel well. The entire rear of the vehicle "rattles" loudly because of this. It appears that this deficiency was fixed, temporarily, before the sale of the vehicle was pursued.

- Auburn, NY, USA

problem #24

Sep 142014


  • 133,000 miles
The passenger side rear wheel well strut mount is only hanging on by a small amount of steel. You can see the interior trim plastic on 3 sides of the upper strut mount bracket. Pieces of rusted steel peel away with 2 fingers. There is no upper strut support and the top threading of the strut is hitting the plastic interior piece in the trunk area. This is a serious safety concern; if the lower strut mount is loose, then there is a potential for further damage to the area and potential the upper bracket gets into the tire. My family's safety is my #1 priority. After researching the problem, I cannot understand why this is not a recall. Both the 2005 Mazda Tribute and the 2005 Ford escape have a high volume of this defect. Basing my experience as a quality engineer in a sheet steel fabrication facility, this type of defect can be related to either poor material quality or choice of materials, poor engineering practices, poor manufacturing processes, and/or poor protection of the wheel well area (more durable coatings). Either way, based on my engineering knowledge and opinion, this defect repair should be covered by the manufacturer. I have had older vehicles that never seen this type of defect. I will never purchase a similar type of vehicle by this manufacturer again due to the nature of this problem and the no recall condition of this problem. Apparently the manufacturer is turning a blind eye to quality and safety related issues on the Tribute and escape. I do understand that this is an older vehicle, but some quality issues do not show up until years later and the manufacturer is still responsible for these types of safety concerns the public is obviously having with these vehicles.

- Appleton, WI, USA

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problem #23

Aug 222014

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • 128,182 miles
Right rear wheelhouse has rust and corrosion at 128,000 miles, and the strut is disconnected from the frame. Mazda has denied any responsibility for this issue and offered no assistance despite the fact that there are hundreds of complaints of this very issue on the NHTSA website, and despite the fact that the 2001-2004 Tributes were recalled and repaired for this very issue. The mechanic and collision repair center said they have never seen rust this bad in a vehicle housed and driven in the southeast where there is little to no snow/salted roads, and no history of flood damage.

- Lynchburg, VA, USA

problem #22

Apr 072014


  • 132,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated that while driving 55 mph, a loud noise emitted from the rear passenger's side. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that the shock detached from vehicle because they were installed incorrectly. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 132,000.

- Wixom, MI, USA

problem #21

Aug 062014


  • 60 miles
While driving on the highway I began to notice a loud banging coming from the back of the car. After inspecting the rear door to verify the sound was not an open door, I found that the underside of the car, specifically the rear right axle, was rusted and deteriorating. Upon further inspection I found that the shock mount had rusted, a problem that will soon cause problems for the wheel mount. There are a multitude of complaints online, all pointing out that this is a factory issue, and all Mazda Tributes and Ford escapes in this year range have this exact problem. This is an issue that must be fixed in the next week or else I will not be able to drive my car- a car I have owned for less than a year.

- Cuyahoga Falls, OH, USA

problem #20

Apr 012014

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
The right rear wheel housing area rusted so bad that the top of shock bracket rusted away and shock started banging against floor. Took it to my Mazda dealer and service manager said it was not right that this should happen. He knows that I garage and take car of my vehicles.he gave me the number to call Mazda for help. Mazda said they would not help! I can't drive this vehicle because it is dangerous and unsafe. Because of family medical issues I can't afford to have it fixed and I will not trade it off to an unsuspecting buyer. Don't know what I will do. Looked on internet and found many of the same problems with the Tribute and Ford escape (both, which I been told by car dealers' service personal, are the same vehicle). You would think a auto company would stand behind their product. I'm no longer proud of the fact that I have owned about 10 Mazda vehicles.

- Ellisville, MO, USA

problem #19

Jun 302014

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 125,262 miles
The right rear wheel well is completely rusted out causing there to be no connection between the body and the rear shocks. Left rear wheel well is starting to rust. No other rust on the car other than the wheel wells. Estimate from the shop is over $4000. Only 9 years old and 125,000 miles on vehicle.

- Kaukauna, WI, USA

problem #18

Jun 272014

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 127,185 miles


While driving home, the rear wheel on the passenger side on my 2005 Mazda Tribute started to knock and bang. Once I arrived home, upon further investigation I noticed that the rear wheel well was severely rusted and rotted. I also noticed that and the shock mount was fully rusted away from the body. Further research showed me that this seems to be a common problem with the 2005 Ford escape and Mazda Tribute frames.

- Scranton, PA, USA

problem #17

Jun 202014


  • 101,000 miles
The passenger side rear wheel well has rusted out such that the suspension is now protruding into the interior of the vehicle. This was discovered when regular rattling from the area progressed into loud bangs with each bump. The mechanic who discovered stated that the rust was abnormal, even for the geographic area, and that none of the other wheel wells exhibited any signs of rusting. He stated it was no longer safe to drive the vehicle and that this condition was most likely the result of some sort of manufacturing defect (as opposed to regular and expected oxidation).

- Mishawaka, IN, USA

problem #16

Jun 042014


  • 98,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Mazda Tribute. The stated while driving approximately 50 mph over a bump, a rattling noise emitted from the rear of the vehicle. The contact inspected the vehicle and noticed that the rear passenger's side wheel well was completely rusted. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 98,000.

- North Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #15

Jun 162014

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 240,000 miles
The right rear wheel well rusted out causing the shock to come off on the top. I have contacted Mazda and NHTSA to submit claim cases. I was right away turned down by Mazda. I am now making a case with NHTSA to hopefully get this issue finally repaired as a recall. We live in a winter state so salt is bad.

- Hanna City, IL, USA

problem #14

Jun 182014

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • 200,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated while driving at various speeds, the vehicle made a loud clanking noise. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who noticed the right rear shock was rusted around the wheel well. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 200,000. Updated 09/09/14 updated 9/10/2014

- Hanna City, IL, USA

problem #13

Jun 042013

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 140,000 miles
The car is rusted through like so many others in the rear passenger wheel well. The suspension is twisting and poking through. I did not know there was a problem until I heard a knocking noise.

- Shorewood, IL, USA

problem #12

Jun 022014

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
I am the current owner of this vehicle I. bought it through North shore bank off lease... I take good care of the car and have it maintained regularly. Recently the rear passenger area has been making a loud banging noise, I thought it may be a broken shock or something to that affect. I took it into Goodyear in racine wi. Come to find the whole wheel well is rotted out on the passenger side.. the mechanic said he could not fix it and take it to racine auto body also in racine, wi. They also said they have never seen anything like that happen to a car or SUV ever before. He said it has to be due to a bad factory process or some flaw that had been when the car was manufactured. They want $1600 to fix the area and I don't feel I should have to fix the flaw from the Mazda manufacturer. I feel it isn't safe to drive on the highway without more damage being added. I really would appreciate some sort of help or replacement of the factory flaw. The car is in fairly decent shape and at this point I can not afford a new car.. I don't know if there had been any other similar issues on any of your other vehicles.

- Racine, WI, USA

problem #11

May 312014

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated while driving approximately 25 mph, the front passenger side wheel broke off of the vehicle. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic who stated that the cross member frame was completely covered with rust. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 80,000. Updated 06/25/14 updated 07/1/2014 updated 8/11/14 the front cross member under the engine that suspension was attached to rusted away and broke causing the right front wheel to move into the right front inner fender, breaking the axle shaft which caused loss of steering. Updated 09/23/14

- Kittanning, PA, USA

problem #10

May 092014

Tribute 4-cyl

  • 130,000 miles
2005 Mazda Tribute. My 17 year old daughter was driving the vehicle down the freeway and she heard a loud thud. She pulled over but did not see any apparent damage. She drove home and the sound became louder. When she returned home I looked at the Tribute. The entire shock body was disengaged from the frame. The right rear shock assemble was no longer attached. The rear passenger side shock was separating from the vehicle. It had rusted completely through. The vehicle does not have rust anywhere else. This could have been a disaster. I am the original owner and have I have had the vehicle for in for most normal maintenance and tires and they never mentioned any concerned with this becoming detached. This is obviously a safety issues. I am very thankful that my daughter was not hurt. Research on this issues suggest that this is a known problem with the Tribute and escape vehicles. It is especially true for the right rear section. Why is there no recall?

- Farmington , MN, USA

problem #9

Mar 142014

Tribute 4-cyl

  • 108,000 miles
The right rear panel is rusting out and made the shock broke lose from the body and I had to take the rear underneath panel off and remove the shock. This has happen to two other Tributes that in my area that I know of.

- Aurora, WV, USA

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