Sorry for resurrecting a dead thread, but I'm new to the board and can't just PM.I have:
2014 Mazda3 S Touring Hatchback (2.5L Engine)
350lb sailboat + 400lb trailer
Torklift Ecohitch custom hitch for Mazda3
I have towed my boat across Phoenix without any problems. Honestly, you almost forget it's there.
The Ecohitch is worth the extra money. If you have an S (or probably any model with LED taillights), you will need to do a little extra work to install the hitch. Specifically, before taking the bumper off, there are more screws to undo. Then, you need to run a 12V line from the battery directly to the box. It wasn't too bad. I'm not the handiest guy and I was scared as hell to mess with my new fancy car, but it came out great.
I think I've seen your car around AVL. You got the same user on mtbr?I did not take any pics during the install, but if you look up "torklift ecohitch mazda 3", there is a video they posted on YouTube of the install. They have the car on a lift, but I did mine without the car on a lift...it's not necessary.
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