really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
123,642 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.

2003 Mazda Tribute engine problems

engine problem

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2003 Mazda Tribute Owner Comments

problem #6

Jul 082014

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 147,302 miles


Coil failure, replaced and same coil failures reoccur. PCM failure causing coil failure.

- Cape Coral, FL, USA

problem #5

Sep 072013


  • 139,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Mazda Tribute. The contact stated that while the vehicle was parked, smoke was seen coming for under the hood. The contact opened the hood to allow the smoke to exit and called a tow trunk. The tow truck driver stated that the vehicle was safe to drive however, when the contact started the vehicle, the check engine and the ABS warning lights were illuminated. The contact drove the vehicle and parked the vehicle again. The vehicle was on fire and destroyed the vehicle. The fire department was called to extinguish the fire. The fire department did not state what caused the fire. The contact called the manufacturer to file a report. The manufacturer stated they would not take a report until there was a fire report issued that stated what caused the fire. The contact did not have a report of what caused the fire. The failure mileage was 139,000.

- Seffner , FL, USA

problem #4

Jun 102013

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 261,552 miles
On June 25, 2013 @ 11:00am I called Mazda corporation (reference call number: [xxx]) about recalls associated with my Mazda Tribute 2003 and was told that the recalls were not assigned to the VIN number of my vehicle. The Mazda representative stated that only the seat beat adjustment has been assigned to my vehicle and that I do not qualify for the recall. Mazda will not honor the recall. I bought the Tribute in 2010 from a dealership; thus, was not aware of the recalls. I have been having a lot of problems with the vehicle and have spent a lot of money trying to fix it. I have a 13 and 14 year old girls and am a single parent. According to the recall, the vehicle is not safe. I cannot afford right now to purchase another vehicle. I am only asking Mazda to honor the recalls. Please see the recall notice below from Mazda. Item affected: Engine and engine cooling date announced: 7/27/2012 description of recall: Mazda is recalling certain model year 2001 through 2006, and 2008, Tribute vehicles equipped with 3.0L V6 engines and speed control. Inadequate clearance between the engine cover and the speed control cable connector could result in a stuck throttle when the accelerator pedal is fully or almost-fully depressed. This risk exists regardless of whether or not speed control (cruise control) is used. Action needed to fix it: Mazda will notify owners, and dealers will repair the vehicles by increasing the engine cover clearance, free of charge. Remedy parts are now available. The safety recall began on September 13, 2012. Owners may contact Mazda customer assistance center at 1-800-222-5500, option #6. information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Stockbridge, GA, USA

problem #3

Dec 162012

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 112,000 miles


My wife was in the parking lot at church waiting for a car to pull away so she could park. The car started to roll forward so she stepped harder on the brake. The car lurched ahead crashing into the car in front of her. My wife is quite sure she had her foot on the brake. As she told me about this I started remembering an event. This car had belonged to my father who has since passed away. He purchased it new. I'm not exactly sure of the date, but I believe it was in the first year of ownership. He was parking at a hospital when all of a sudden the vehicle was taking off and pushing the car in front of him. I figured he was having a senior moment and had his foot on the wrong pedal. I did some quick research today and found that others have had this problem. Maybe my father was doing all the right things and it really was the cars fault. I also see that there have been recalls on this matter. I'm not sure if any of these issues were addressed when my father had the car, but I will be checking it out. I hope you will be continuing to follow up on this. This is a scary and dangerous issue that deserves your attention. When things start effecting your driving record, insurance costs, and make you pay deductibles when it is not your fault something needs to change!

- Bettendorf, IA, USA

problem #2

Feb 012011

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
The first 2 to 4 times the accelerator is used (not pushed hard), the cable sticks. We have to push harder on the pedal, then it suddenly releases. This causes the vehicle to jump in the direction chosen. It is very difficult to smoothly back our of the garage or parking space. Then the accelerator is slow to return to idle. It appears to be the same issue as recall NHTSA campaign #04V583000 for 2004 Tributes, but our vehicle was built at the end of 2003.

- Portage, MI, USA

problem #1

Jan 142004

Tribute 6-cyl

  • 7,000 miles
The RPM on this vehicle jumps even if I am at a full stop sometimes it races even if the car is in park took the car to several shops had severely parts replaced.

- Mcdonough, GA, USA

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