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.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
37,297 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 steering problems

steering problem

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2008 Mazda CX-7 Owner Comments

problem #4

Feb 102015


  • miles


The contact owns a 2008 Mazda Cx-7. the contact stated that the steering wheel was extremely tight and was difficult to maneuver left and right. The dealer indicated that there was a premature failure with the ball links associated with the lower ball joints. The driver side ball joints. Months later, the steering wheel was difficult to turn left and right again. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and they replaced the ball joints on both sides of the vehicle. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign number: 16V593000 (suspension) months ago, but the remedy and parts had not yet been supplied to the dealer. The dealer indicated that the two repairs were separate from the steering recall. The VIN was also included in NHTSA campaign number: 16V356000 (air bags). The failure mileage was not available. Parts distribution disconnect. VIN tool confirms parts not available.

- Sicklerville, NJ, USA

problem #3

Jan 052011

CX-7 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
There was a knocking almost as if the car was a diesel, brought the car to milford Mazda in milford ct after purchasing the vehicle a month earlier at bobs in milford ct. The Mazda dealer replaced the vvt December 2012 the service engine light goes on and I take it to the local garage and they get a code for camshaft, I bring the car to Mazda who tells me upon arrival with out even looking at the vehicle that I need a new engine and it wouldn't be covered under my extended warranty because they are sure there is sludge in the engine, yea same story everyone else gets. I faithfully had my oil changed every 5,0000 miles max as this was drilled in my head growing up from my dad. Approximately some time in March I was driving to work I get this loud whining sound coming from the engine and the car loses all power the turbo went. I have a new turbo installed and still supposedly need another vvt just 2 years after they replaced this part and now there is a humming/whining noise coming from the rear of the car not to mention (2) tie rods are bad. This car is no doubt a piece of crap that I still owe 13K on and Mazda corporate will not even return my call. There has to be something that can be done with all the same complaints.

- Trumbull, CT, USA

problem #2

Dec 102012

CX-7 4-cyl

  • 62,000 miles
The power steering failed. Almost impossible to steer car to safe stop on side of road. The power steering hose was cut by the end of the crankshaft at the end of the engine and all the fluid leaked out causing the pump to stop and burn up. The hose was cut by long-term rubbing by the end of the crankshaft that spins outside the engine cover. The hose is located next to the shaft that spins. It sliced into it causing a leak.

- Napa, CA, USA

problem #1

Sep 302009


  • 47,189 miles
Without warning the cabin of my Mazda Cx-7 filled with smoke and the powersteering went out. Apparently faulty ac compressor burned belts and knocked out powersteering. Mazda replaced compressor with new revised compressor.

- Wrentham, MA, USA

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