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really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
89,750 miles
Total Complaints:
3 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. dealer says i need a new transmission 3000 + (2 reports)
  2. not sure (1 reports)
2004 Mazda MAZDA3 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2004 Mazda MAZDA3 Owner Comments

problem #3

Feb 222012


  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,000 miles


Well I'm driving to work as usual, then I notice my engine sounds a little loud. I look at tachometer and notice I'm pulling 4500 RPMs at 30 MPH, seems odd. Switch to sequential shifting, my gear indicator goes blank, then flashes a number 3. So I pull over manually downshifting, then i wait a few moments. Begin again manually shifting through the gears, no issues. About an hour later it happens again but now 4th gear isn't even acknowledged as existing. Next day I get the similar problem but now it's a blinking 2, and 3rd gear is apparently erased from memory (and I thought we had such fond memories together) which is an issue because, heck, top speed in second is 45 MPH, (at high RPMs)

So I finally get an AT light meaning I have an error code for my OBD port. I drop by O'reillys to get my free OBD reading, get a little code calling out my shifting forks, odd, but hey whatever right. Go to a transmission shop who runs some diagnostics for me (free of charge), they say it's calling out two components in the transmission, parts are cheap, however the labor is about 2500 dollars do to the task of disassembling and reassembling the whole transmission. I ask how much for a whole new transmission, he replies $1500. Hmph I say, but what if there is something else wrong and it doesn't need anything we discussed here, which he replies, then that would be a big waste of money.

I agree with him, we part ways and I go on an internet search for solutions because hey, 1st and 2nd work, maybe there is a cheaper more correct solution online. I find out apparently if your lucky and find a junk yard with your car and model year with a transmission it's only 100$. So I search but apparently many others have the same plan but beat me to it. So I resort to the internet again for maybe a more practical solution. I found several articles saying that they swapped out their AT speed sensor and Voila! Transmission shifted perfectly again, parts only 25 dollars. I've swapped it out and am waiting on my new optima red top battery for my car (because it has burnt out 2 batteries already, so i figure ill get the one with best performance and a warranty this time) should be here Thursday, then I can test out the theory of the sensor replacement. Hopefully a better answer than "yerp, needs a new one of those high class fancy transmission that cost 1500$".

I will make an update once I try it out (fingers crossed).

- Rafferty V., killeen, TX, USA

problem #2

Aug 102010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,195 miles

Mazda has truly let me down with their recent transmission problems on their vehicles. No way should a transmission die on you after 84000km!! To make matters worse, Mazda Canada didn't want to hear anything about it and treated me like a piece of dirt when I complained about the durability of their cars. For an automatic transmission to lose the ability to go into 3rd and 4th gear is ludicrous with such few mileage! As if this wasn't bad enough, the darn thing rusts like you wouldn't believe on both sides of the car. Apparently, Mazda is aware of this problem yet even new models have a rust issue.

Suffice to say that this is the first and last Mazda car I will ever own. Their attractive physical appearance is definitely not worth the excessive maintenance costs associated with it. Shame on Mazda for gauging the hard working consumer.!

- Richard J., St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada

problem #1

Dec 042008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles

I took care of this car and I drive carefully, I'm very upset about this my first transmission problem on any car I have owned dealer says this never happens but it did to me

- Michael C., Greenville, NC, US

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