Notes: The 2008 Mazda CX-7 has numerous reports filed with the NHTSA about engine & A/C problems, continuing these defect trends from the 2007 model year.

Owners report problems with the 2008 CX-7's Variable Valve Timing (VVT) & timing chain failing, causing major damage to the engine — Mazda uses an interference design so typically the valves are bent & the entire engine needs to be replaced. Mazda dealers typically quote $9,000 for an engine replacement.

There is also a trend of the turbo failing at low mileage.

Finally for the 2008 CX-7 there is a clear pattern of A/C compressor failure at relatively low mileage. Owners report smoke & occasionally the serpentine belt catches fire when the A/C compressor clutch seizes while driving. Mazda extended the A/C warranty to 60,000 miles, however many owners report their A/C compressor failed very soon after the 60k mark.

In 2011, Mazda began a "Special Service Program" that extended the warranty to 7 years/70,000 miles covering turbocharger oil leaks & excessive timing chain noise — an early sign of timing chain failure. However coverage under the program requires perfect documentation of all required maintenance with other stipulations. Buyer beware.


fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
14,000 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.

2008 Mazda CX-7 exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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2008 Mazda CX-7 Owner Comments

problem #2

Apr 152011


  • 28,000 miles


I have a 2008 Cx-7 with a failed egr valve. They refuse to cover this part under my power-train warranty even though this is clearly an emissions failure. I have been doing some research on the environmental protection Agency's website and it is my understanding that the vehicle manufacturers are required to design and build their vehicles to meet emission standards for the useful life of the vehicle specified by law. Under section 207 of the clean air act, if epa determines that a substantial number of vehicles in a class or category do not meet emission standards in actual use even though they are properly maintained and used, epa can require the manufacturer to recall and fix the affected vehicles. My car has less then 30,000 mile on it and the erg valve should not have gone out already. I should not have to pay $712 to replace a part that does not meet emission standards set forth by California. It is not just my vehicle having this problem, the more research I do the more I realize that this an on going problem with multiple Mazda consumers.

- Long Beach, CA, USA

problem #1

Mar 112009


  • miles
We purchased the vehicle new from a Mazda dealer. From the time we purchased the vehicle I have noticed excessive carbon buildup around the exhaust openings at the rear of the vehicle. It is progressively getting worse to the point where the catalytic converters are getting red hot. The chrome exhaust tips are now discolored due to the heat. This vehicle was checked several days after purchase, where according to the Mazda dealer, there were no issues. We moved, and a new Mazda dealer is servicing the vehicle. Today, 03-18-09 it was again checked diagnosticians with no issues. When this vehicle is driven for approximately 100 miles or more the exhaust system gets extremely hot. It is this "layman's opinion" that this engine is running very rich, "starving for air". I am concerned that this will eventually catch fire from the excessive heat generated at the catalytic converters and transmitted through the remainder of the exhaust system. (last trip back from phila area was 03-11-09...I was concerned about parking it in the garage until it cooled down).

- Hanover, PA, USA

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