really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
59,723 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.

2001 Mazda Tribute brakes problems

brakes problem

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2001 Mazda Tribute Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #21

Dec 262012

Tribute 6-cyl

  • miles


2001 Mazda Tribute. Consumer writes in regards to the vehicle subframe corrosion recall notice. The consumer received a recall notice in early June. However, she had already paid for the repairs. So, she submitted a request for reimbursement, along with a synopsis of the trouble she experienced. The consumer received a letter of denial from Mazda, stating the parts that were replaced or service completed, were not considered covered items under the subframe corrosion recall. On December 26, 2012 while driving on the highway, the consumer noticed a decreased control over the steering. The vehicle fish-tailed multiple times in light snow, which had never occurred before. Due to her steering difficulties, she drove at 30 mph, yet still spun out for no apparent reason. No one was injured and she only hit a median which caused damage to the rear passenger side tail light and body damage. At the time, she attributed the incident to winter weather conditions. However, it made far more sense in the context of the recall. In January 2013, she continued to experience steering problems. She attempted to get an alignment, but ran into problems due to the subframe; which was the first time, she heard of trouble with the subframe. According to invoice, the caster was not adjustable without the subframe adjustment and possibly more. It was 0.3 degrees from acceptable range, may demonstrate a slight lead or pull. The consumer experienced problems for the next two years. The ball joint and right control arm were replaced. The mechanic informed the consumer the control arm looked as if it was ready to break off, due to corrosion. Also, the left front control arm, along with the struts, rotors and brake hoses, were all replaced.

- Aurora, IL, USA

problem #20

Dec 122012

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 155,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, a burning smell was coming from the front end of the vehicle. The contact merged to the should of the road and noticed that the brake master cylinder reservoir cap was leaking brake fluid. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnosis. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 12V016000 (service brakes, hydraulic). The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 155,000 and the current mileage was 161,000.

- Waterbury, CT, USA

problem #19

Apr 022011

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • miles
Email referral from center for auto safety on behalf of consumer re: NHTSA recall 12V357 / PE12-09. Referral associated an April 2011 incident with the recall and included a police accident report and two photos according to the narrative from the police report, the driver of the vehicle stated she was traveling North on route 35, when the brakes on the vehicle stopped working, which caused her to lose control of the vehicle at an intersection. She attempted to make a right run from route 35 onto a bridge, but the vehicle crossed all three lanes of traffic and crashed through a guardrail and landed against a tree. The vehicle then became engulfed in flames.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #18

Apr 022011

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • miles


2001 Mazda Tribute. Consumer states brake failure while driving, causing a crash and vehicle fire recall # 12V357000 was referenced.

- London, OH, USA

problem #17

Dec 012011


  • 12,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Mazda Tribute. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign id number: 12V016000 service brakes, hydraulic: Antilock: Control unit/module in December 2012. The dealer advised the contact that the recall could not be performed because the part needed for repairs was not available. The dealer was unable to provide a date in which the part was expected to become available. The manufacturer also advised that the part was not available. The failure mileage was 12,000 and the current mileage was 115,000.

- Alexandria , VA, USA

problem #16

May 122010

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 139,533 miles
During drive home from work indicator for brake problem came on. Found brake fluid level low again. Brake fluid seems to be lost through reservoir breather/ fill cap. Alot of brake fluid has accumulated on and around the master cylinder and is dripping on the exhaust(smells bad too). Found that a recall has been issued for this but Mazda says my VIN is not in the recall range. What should I do?

- Port Orchard, WA, USA

problem #15

Jan 232012


  • 130,000 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated that the vehicle was included in the recall associated with NHTSA campaign id number 12V016000 (service brakes, hydraulic:antilock:control unit/module). An authorized dealer was notified and stated that the parts were unavailable. The manufacturer was then notified and the contact was advised to take the vehicle to a dealer and have the failure diagnosed at his expense. The manufacturer stated that if the test results were not related to the failure, they would not repair the vehicle. The failure mileage was 130,000.

- Steubenville, OH, USA

problem #14

Feb 152012


  • miles
Keys come out of the ignition when my Mazda Tribute is not in park. I forgot today that the front rotors are real bad and need replaced and I only have 41140 miles on my 2001 Tribute which I bought brand new from the Mazda dealer in town. I have to replace the front door handle twice now since it would not open from the inside.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #13

Feb 132012


  • miles
The contact owns a 2001 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated that there was a recall associated with NHTSA campaign id number 12V016000 (service brakes, hydraulic: Antilock: Control unit/module). The dealer was notified and stated that the recall part would not be available until the second quarter of 2012. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the problem. The contact did not experience failure; however expressed concern of the potential safety hazard. The failure mileage was unavailable.

- Youngstown, OH, USA

problem #12

Mar 072011


  • 149,126 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated that the vehicle was taken for inspection when he was advised that the ball joints were defective and all of the brake lines were fractured and split. The dealer was not contacted. The manufacturer was contacted but offered no assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and the current mileage was 149,126.

- Clarkson Valley , MO, USA

problem #11

Oct 212010


  • 124,000 miles


I own a 2001 Mazda Tribute, which I purchased used in 2007. The vehicle went through six master cylinders within the first few months we owned it. It has been an ok car, but frequently and I mean frequently visits the mechanic to get fixed, whereas my other (foreign-made) vehicle rarely has problems - I will never buy american again! Wednesday evening I picked up my 2001 Tribute up at the mechanic from getting four new engine coils which had just been replaced two years previously, which my mechanic says should not have gone bad. Thursday morning I had my two children in the car when I reversed out of my parking spot at a local church when the brake pedal went straight to the floor! the car kept going back and I had to use the emergency break to stop!!!! luckily I did not hit anything and no one was hurt. I had the truck towed back to the mechanic, which I had just picked it up from (this was the car's 4th visit in two weeks for broken parts). The mechanic said that the front left brake line had ruptured and the right one was cracked, so both were replaced. I am so thankful the brakes hadn't failed minutes later when my family would have been on the interstate!!! no recall has been made by Mazda for this problem, but I have seen many similar stories from this vehicle. It is a disgrace and threat to not only the driver and passengers of these vehicles, but to everyone on the road!!! I'm scared to drive my car, not knowing if it will get me home safely or even go. I would never have purchased the car if I could go back and only wish I could purchase something different now.

- Mars, PA, USA

problem #10

May 152010

Tribute 4WD 6-cyl

  • 117,075 miles
On Saturday, May 15, my daughter and I were traveling in our 2001 Mazda SE LX. In St. Paul, mn. My 22-year old daughter was driving. We were sitting at a stop-light when the brake pedal slowly dropped to the floor. There was minimal braking power left, but enough to get home. On mon, May 15, vehicle was towed to our repair garage and diagnosed with two front brake hoses (adjacent to wheels) that had "exploded " after investigation, we learned that brake-hose failures of Ford escapes and Mazda Tributes of that era were extremely common. In a 2 - 3 weeks, we're replacing the rear hoses for safety. I do not know why Mazda has failed to issue a recall with respect to this issue.. while the vehicle has had more repair issues than any other I've owned, this issue is potentially lethal, particularly if one is traveling on a highway. A recall should be required immediately on these hoses. I have asked for Mazda's assistance in addressing a complimentary rear-hose repair. They expressed doubt about trying to help because of vehicles age and mileage -- 9 years, 117,000 miles, however vehicle has been well-maintained. Mazda cs indicated they would contact regional personal to provide me with a response but were not optimistic about their response. Remember: This failure probably common. Our brake hose ruptured at a stop light. Had it occurred roughly five minutes later, we might have risked our own lives as well as those around us. Tributes are no longer manufactured by Mazda. My model had at least 6 recalls and 30+ in-warranty repairs.

- Minnetonka, MN, USA

problem #9

Mar 072009


  • 130,000 miles
Was stopped at light when all of a sudden the brakes went down to the floor. Tested brakes when light changed and no brakes at all. Had just recently been driving about 50 miles per hour. Drove very slow into parking space and found out brake hose had broke.

- Gahanna, OH, USA

problem #8

Jan 292009


  • 122,000 miles
I was driving my 2001 Mazda Tribute to work on the freeway at 60 mph. Traffic was slowing ahead and I applied the brakes. A second after the brakes were applied the pedal went to the floor and I lost all brake operation. I was able to avoid an accident because I was in the left lane and was able to pull over to the shoulder and downshift the vehicle until it came to a stop. If I was not in the far left or far right I would have rear ended another vehicle at speeds above 50 mph because I would not have been able to safely veer off the road. I got the vehicle repaired and the front right brake hose burst, causing a total loss of hydraulic pressure. I saved the parts if a review is required.

- Northville, MI, USA

problem #7

Jul 282008


  • 77,900 miles
Brakes failed to stop vehicle within 200ft, started as a regular braking but only slowed, applied full force and held foot pressure. No pulsating and slowed to approximately 5 mph. Turned car right to avoid car and bumped his right back bumper with my left front bumper. Minimal damage to other vehicle. My bumper has a 3 inch rip in bumper. Road was dry but it acted like the brakes where wet, Mazda recalled ABS in March 2007 by NHTSA records, I did not receive a recall on this ! can you help, brake pads replaced approximately 12,000 miles ago.

- Riverview, FL, USA

problem #6

Nov 032003


  • miles
November 2, 2006 Mazda North America operations attn: Customer assistance center po box 19734 irvine, ca 92623-9734 to whom it may concern: Our service advisors tony and brian, again at el cajon Mazda, did a little research and found that the only factory rotors for the Mazda Tribute are throw-away. Other than buying aftermarket parts, which we prefer not to do, we would have this throw-away dilemma. My husband called Mazda North America and spoke with todd in customer service. He took the information and immediately called us back. (I had already tried doing what my husband did, spoke with bruce, and was told to go to another Mazda dealership for a second opinion, there was nothing Mazda could do.) todd seemed to understand our frustration with this whole situation and called tony at el cajon Mazda and authorized for our rotors to be replaced at no charge, we would be responsible for the pads and labor again. So our brakes are now replaced, but we are still feeling a little funny about the whole situation. We were told that if the pads are changed with 50% life left on them, then the rotors may be able to be turned. Well, that seems pretty crazy to us to have to get new pads when they are still half there! we really want to stick with genuine Mazda parts, but in the future feel that financially we may be better off just buying aftermarket so we don't have to replace the rotors every 3 years! needless to say, we are somewhat frustrated with the apparent design flaw of the braking system on our 2001 Mazda Tribute, and certainly hope we don't have to go through this with our 2005. Hopefully this system has been improved upon.

- El Cajon, CA, USA

problem #5

Nov 102004

Tribute 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,000 miles
Front disk rotors are completely worn out, although the pads are in great shape (not worn out). Mileage is under 50,000 miles.

- Fort Collins, CO, USA

problem #4

Apr 152003


  • Automatic transmission
  • 34,343 miles
1.the first problem I had with my Tribute was all the power steering fluid had leaked out, so they replaced the rack and pinion. 2.the second, when going for my first brake job I'm informed that the front rotors are too thin and under specs. And need to be replaced (a $700 job) so, I went to Mazda and they said the brake pads are too hard for the rotors are are unusually wearing so, they replaced my rotors. 3.the third, a week later I'm strained, because the starter stuck and burned itself out, they towed the car and replaced the starter. 4.the fourth, they told me that the master cylinder had leakage so, I had to have them fix that. 5.the fifth, now I am currently dealing with a sputtering or cluncking noise that occurs upon slow acceleration of 40 mph with pedal vibration and also occurs sometimes at 60 mph now. They haven't been able to figure out and fix this problem yet. But, thought they fixed the problem because they found a bushing near the engine compartment that was completely cracked so, they replaced that. Until next time.....

- Lakewood, CA, USA

problem #3

Jul 152003


  • Manual transmission
  • 9,000 miles
Brake rotors keep warping.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #2

Oct 202003

Tribute 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 19,200 miles
The madza Tribute 2001 stalls without warning, at varying speeds. Both the brakes and the steering system are inoperable. The car starts again after this occurs. This has happened 5 times! luckily, my son who drives this car hasn't been injured. But what about the next time" what if he is driving on the expressway at 55 or 65 miles an hour? can Mazda assure me that he won't be seriously injured or killed? the service department has offered several explanations after verifying that this is a on going problem with this vehicle. We have been told that the air intake valve sticks when carbon builds up on it. Now we are told it is a flaw in the computer. Clearly there is a serious design flaw which the service departments have been unable to repair. This car is a disaster waiting to happen! how can I possibly allow my son to drive this vehicle"!!

- Smyrna, GA, USA

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