fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
17,064 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.

2012 Mazda MAZDA3 brakes problems

brakes problem

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2012 Mazda MAZDA3 Owner Comments

problem #14

Jun 202014

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles


Driving at 70mph, lost acceleration and multiple engine lights came on. Had to move over to emergency lane on interstate and driving to nearest exit at approx 40mph. Car towed to dealer for repair.

- Temple Terrace, FL, USA

problem #13

Jul 292014


  • 30,000 miles
I was driving on a city street, stopped for a red light, then when I tried to accelerate it was really slow. I looked at the dash and saw the tcs/dsc light was illuminated. As I continued driving the acceleration continued to be really slow and wouldn't go above 2000 rpms, top speed was 40mph. I limped home like this with my hazards on, parked for an hour or so, then started the car again to see if the light was still on it had gone off so I drove around the block and it ran perfectly fine. I called the local dealership to see if I should bring it in and was told it would be a waste of time if the light is not currently on and it's running fine. When I asked if he had heard of this happening with the 2012 Mazda 3 skyactiv he said a few times. That along with reading on this site that there are several other similar complaints tells me this is not an isolated issue. I'm just glad I wasn't on the freeway with my baby in the car. That would have been very dangerous. I'm sure Mazda doesn't want to wait until someone is injured or killed before they do something about this, right?

- Marysville, WA, USA

problem #12

May 102014

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 16,490 miles
I was driving along a city street on the way to a mall when I noticed the traction control warning light come on. My car then started to decelerate. I pressed on the gas and noticed that the needle on my tachometer was running high indicating high rate of RPM. I could not drive faster than 35 mph for fear of redlining and possibly damaging the engine. I went back home and parked my car. Later when I started my car the traction control warning light had turned off and I was able to drive the car normally again. This is a very serious matter that could result in serious accident if it had happened on a freeway or on a mountain road. I no longer feel safe driving this car, not knowing when this might occur again. I will be having the car inspected at the dealership since it is still under warranty.

- Daly City, CA, USA

problem #11

Feb 132014

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 25,000 miles


Driving on the freeway and car lost power, even when pushing on the gas pedal I could not get the speed to go past 40, very dangerous on a freeway. Had to get all the way over to get off the freeway, going 40, with people going 80 miles per hour around me! lucky I was not hit! traction control light was on and stayed on the entire time. Pulled off freeway and called the dealer they had me come in and said they reset the computer because they could not find an error code. Then it just happened again on the freeway, I was changing lanes and the traction control light came on and again I had no power even with the gas pedal pushed all the way down. It was a sunny 75 degree day so no reason for it to come on. This happens randomly and is very dangerous!! I took into the dealer and again they said no error code so if it happens again bring it in. I tried to tell them when this happens it is not safe to drive it. This needs to be investigated before some one gets injured or killed because of this malfunction!

- Livermore, CA, USA

problem #10

Dec 052013


  • 26,900 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Mazda Mazda 3. the contact stated that while driving approximately 65 mph, the traction skid warning light illuminated. The vehicle independently shifted into a low gear and would not accelerate. The failure was recurring. The vehicle was towed to the dealer for diagnosis however, the technician was unable to diagnose the failure. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 26,900.

- Granada Hills, CA, USA

problem #9

Sep 012013

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 13,200 miles
While driving at approx. 45 mph with cruise control engaged; the headlights turned off for about 2 seconds then came back on. When the headlights came back on the traction control light illuminated. The whole issue gave the appearance of part of the electrical system losing power and the power then being restored. During the incident the engine did not appear to lose power, nor did the cruise control disengage.

- Francis Creek, WI, USA

problem #8

Aug 082013


  • 24,000 miles


After taking a left hand turn onto a local road, I noticed that my car was decelerating despite the fact I was pressing on the gas. The traction control light on the dash came on and the car appeared to be stuck in 1st or 2nd gear; I could not go faster than 40 mph without the rpms going too high. This car has automatic transmission. I tried turning off the traction control by pressing its button, but this did not work. I also tried switching to manual mode but couldn't get the car to shift or the traction control light to shutoff. I finally had to pull over and restart the car to get the light to turn off and the transmission to act normally. I have seen others post a similar problem, though they were in much more serious environments - on the highway going 70 and all of a sudden having to pull across traffic and restart the car because of this weird transmission-traction control issue. This creates for an incredibly dangerous situation and I am petrified of this happening again in a similar scenario. This is something Mazda needs to address immediately.

- Reminderville, OH, USA

problem #7

Sep 192012

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 8,000 miles
I was driving in city in the evening temp. About 65-70 F, dry and smooth road(my daily route to work) in steady speed of I would say 45 mph, trying to change lane my car traction light went on and engine light and at light below my gear screen, my car locked my transmission, car was in drive mode so I put on manual to try change gear manually but did not change gear, I was stuck on one gear and I could not slow down because I would loose my RPM middle of the road, I drove about 2 mile till I had safe place to stop, pulled over turn off the car and wait for few minutes, then turn engine back on, traction light was off so as the at light but engine light was still on, car was behaving normal and I could drive it home, next day I took it to dealer I turned it off for waiting to check-in my car when the dealer service personal turned it on as she said the engine light was off too, be she said we keep it to make sure its fine, I got a rental car from them, they told me if something is wrong Mazda will pay for rental, they kept the car overnight, mechanic drove it with him home, did not find anything wrong with it, they contact Mazda and remotely checked the skyactiv computer, did not find anything either, they update the computer software as they told me and they were guessing it was a computer glitch but they waved the rental car for day and half!! since then it never happened again, I even tested the traction function in slippery road and works fine.

- Campbell, CA, USA

problem #6

Mar 222013

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 8,500 miles
Date & mileage approximate. I was driving 35mph and sped up to merge 1 lane to my right so I wouldn't miss my turn. I sped up, maybe to 40 and the traction control light went on and there was no acceleration at that point. I am glad I didn't get rear ended but did get flipped off for cutting someone off and slowing down. I made my turn and hit the traction control button but it stayed lit. I have an automatic with the manual option, I tried driving manually, the light didn't go off. I then pulled over tried the traction button again, it stayed lit. The weather condition was warm and nice out. I turned the car off for a few minutes, started it, light was off and it drove fine. If this happened and the driver behind me hadn't paid attention I would have been hit! I don't want to think about having to cross a street where the oncoming car had right of way and my car didn't accelerate. On another note I have had my car unlock itself 3 times, when I know it was locked with the fob. The fob is not damaged in any way. Twice in same location weeks apart. It was locked, beeped the lights flashed.my keys were set down untouched after that, not in my pocket moving around but on the counter. First time I thought I must have forgotten; my car got ransacked. Second time I knew I locked it, I told myself maybe the cat stepped perfectly on the key fob, on just the unlock button that night. My car got ransacked again but to their surprise nothing was in the car as everything was stolen the first #@#& time! the third time I had a witness watch me lock the car with the fob and I even checked all the handles-locked. We left the restaurant, again unlocked. I cant leave anything in my car because I fear it may happen again.. I wonder if someone's key fob is on the same frequency and strangers are unlocking it? im going to the dealership in a few days. Im afraid to drive and park my car.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #5

Jun 062013

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 14,000 miles
My car is an automatic transmission. I was driving in traffic on the highway (about 20 mph) and noticed that when I pressed the accelerator, the car did not accelerate or shift normally. Instead, the car stayed in low gear, and the RPM reached over 4000. At this point, I noticed. The stability control light on the dashboard was staying on, indicating a problem with the car's stability control. Once I reached a place I could stop, I turned off the car and restarted - the problem appeared to have gone away - no more light on the dashboard and no more weird engine speeds/failure to shift gears. I am concerned about this because it seems to be a common complaint both on the NHTSA site and on Mazda forum websites. I believe an investigation into this problem is warranted, as it represents a definite safety risk, affecting the car's ability to accelerate appropriately.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #4

Mar 292013

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 12,000 miles


I have an automatic skyactiv 2012 5dr hatchback. I was pulling out on a back road that was 60mph and as soon as I pressed the gas to speed up with traffic it was as if the car lost all power. The traction control light came on and the car slowly accelerated as I had the gas pressed to the floor. It very slowly sped up to 60mph and would not go any faster. I tried pressing the traction control button to turn it off and nothing happened. My wife and I got lunch and afterwards it worked fine. Last time I was at the dealership they told me there was a recall for the stalling issue and that they had fixed it. This was about a month or so before I experienced the stall. Before then I had not had any issues with stalling, just with pulling out onto roads. That leads me to mention that this car does not do well when pulling out onto roads. The car does not respond well. It lags and then when it realizes you have your foot pressed on the gas it throws you back into your seat. It's as if the car is in 3rd gear when you pull out and then throws itself into 1st gear. The car feels very unsafe. I wish I wouldn't have bought Mazda's 2012 Mazda3 since, afterall, it was their first attempt at their new skyactiv engine.

- Frisco, TX, USA

problem #3

Feb 152013

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 17,758 miles
While driving down the highway the vehicle all of a sudden lost power and began to slow down. The traction control light turned on at this time. Pushing the accelerator did nothing. When I switched the manual mode for the transmission the gear was not displayed on the dashboard and trying to up or downshift did nothing. After pulling off to the side of the road I was able to place the transmission in park. I lifted the hood and checked for fluid leaks or spills of which there were none. After turning off the car and waiting a couple of minutes I turned it back on and now had the traction control, at, and check engine lights lit. After putting the transmission in drive and pushing the accelerator the vehicle was extremely sluggish in acceleration and would shift through the first four gears but at rpms much higher than normal. I was able to limp the vehicle home as the dealership was already closed. After letting the vehicle sit for 15 minutes or so I turned it back on and now only the check engine light is lit. Will be taking to the dealer in the morning.

- Lockhart, TX, USA

problem #2

Oct 162012

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 350 miles
I was driving home on a busy highway but luckily crossing at an intersection with lights. I turned left and it was as if my car went in neutral. I hit the gas and I didn't go anywhere. I had to glide to the side of the road as cars were beeping at me. I noticed that the stability control light came on. I regularly turn left at other sections of this highway where there are no lights and you just have to go when you can make it through quick. What if this happened then? I would have been hit my multiple cars going very fast. The dealership said the computer needed to be reset and it should be fine. "should be fine"! I have a family and bought a new car so we are safe then this happens and I hear "should be fine".

- Clearwater, FL, USA

problem #1

Apr 222012

MAZDA3 4-cyl

  • 2,700 miles
I was driving a steady 55 mph on the freeway on a dry sunny day with my wife and kids. The roads were smooth and dry, and the gas tank was 1/2 full. The car was 3 months old with 2700 miles on it. The car suddenly lost power and started to decelerate. The engine was still running, but pressing the gas pedal had no effect on engine RPM or vehicle speed. I looked down and the stability control light was on (steady lit, not blinking). I thought that maybe the stability control was confused, so I tried hitting the stability control switch to turn it off. No luck, the light was still on and the car continued to slow. I then moved the shift lever over to manually select gears since I though maybe the tranny was stuck in 6th gear - no luck as the display didn't even show what gear it was in. There was no freeway exit in sight and I was not able to coast to the next exit. I finally pulled over the car at less than 30 mph dodging cars zooming by at 60 mph. I turned off the car and restarted. The stability control light was now finally off and I was able to drive off.

- Fremont, CA, USA

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