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Discussion Starter #1
Hello from Melb, Australia!

My background; 2.5 years ago I was deciding between a 2013 Mazda 3 and a 2009 Audi A4 B8. Both around AU$20k and similar km. I didn't like the Mazda, it felt cheap and just horrid compared to the Audi. The gf preferred the Mazda (it was bright blue), but since I was paying, it was no surprise I ended up with the Audi.

I knew Europeans were expensive to maintain, but really, they're better off being scrapped at 8 years old. Your transmission playing up a little? Oh, that's the transmission control module, it can't be repaired, only replaced. $5000 thanks. Oh, your engine mount is getting old and has a minor crack, and has a sensor that puts the engine in limp mode? Yeah, that needs replacing, $3500 thanks. Oh, your PCV has a small crack and fuel consumption has gone up 5%? Limp mode, or pay $1800 thanks.

So after 2.5 years and $20k in repairs later, I finally sold the Audi for $12k yesterday ... SO much money gone. If I run the numbers it makes me cry.

I am bringing home a 2016 (BN) Mazda3 SP25 Astina in Soul Red tomorrow. 40,000km, and some minor paint issues I might rectify, but I am seriously impressed with the improvement from 2013 to 2016 in Mazda. 2013 felt cheap, was so noisy inside, and just felt like a second-rate car to me. 2016 is leaps ahead. Coming from an Audi A4, the only thing I'm going to miss about the Audi is the badge.

$300 capped price servicing? Oh yes, please. Readily available parts? Talk dirty to me. Can work on the car yourself without a computer telling you you're stupid and you need to go to a dealership to clear it? I'm sold.
 

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G'day and welcome.

Better late than never, to learn that a badge is a badge, nothing more.

Still don't understand why city people are concerned about appearance over function.

Anyway, enjoy the 3

What's wrong with the paint?
 

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My wife really wanted an Audi as well, until I gave her a lesson on price differences on maintenance. We're sticking with Asian cars. Last two cars were a Toyota and Honda. Great reliable cars and cheap maintenance. We now drive a Mazda and a Hyundai. Really happy with both. Screw European cars.

Sincerely,
An European.
 

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Welcome! Sorry about your Audi, my brother has an s4 and has been lucky so far but its still early for him. Myself I stick to Japanese cars since my first 3-4 american cars nickle and dimed me to death.

My mazda 3 2.5 has 37k miles and has been flawless, even slightly modded and tuned. I browse these forums almost daily and dont see any real "common issues". Even my subarus which ive loved have had those. So far this car has been 100% trouble free. Ive only been to the dealer for my first free oil change.

Oh yeah, the oil is easy as dirt to change on these.
 

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@oscargamer thanks mate! Comparing the earlier M3 and the Audi, the Audi was definitely built better, felt more solid, and impressed me more. Saying that, the BN surprised the hell out of me. I'm glad I've made the switch. RE: the paint, the last owner left some bird poo on there a bit long and it looks like it's eaten some of the clear coat. Going to give it a going over with the orbital buffer over the weekend and see if I can smooth it out. If not, a good wax will hide the worst of it.
@Matagonka yeah I'll happily attest to the cost. If anyone wants a real life example of someone burned by Audi repair costs, send them my way. I'll beat them straight.
@ElNino77 hope it stays that way for your brother! Tell him that the first time something serious goes wrong, get rid of it straight away. It's only the tip of the iceberg ... Glad to hear it's easy to service with no real issues. Will be good to get wrenching again!
 

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Go real easy on the paint. It is notoriously thin. If the clear coat is damaged, might need some professional help.

Enjoy your new ride.
 

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Try Meguiar's Scratch X 2.0...stuff is amazing and just requires a pad and some elbow grease.

It's clear coat safe and won't damage the paint. No swirl marks either.

Meguiar's Scratch X 2.0
CK
 
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For the record, count me in as someone who likes to have a sexy looking car. If i can glance back on the way into work and think to myself "oh yeah baby" thats worth something to me!

But yeah the function has to be there first and foremost. But the styling on the gen3 3's and 6's really caught my attention from day one. Then they made good on the promise to offer a manual with the 2.5 and i was sold.

Yeah the paint is nothing special quality wise but does look pretty darn good. Certainly some orange peel up close but i never was bothered too much by that. Mine is 3 years old and showing some battle scars but still a stunner from 5 feet.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
@CerealKiller thanks for that, I'll give it a go. If it doesn't work, I'll give it a go with the random orbital.
@ElNino77 yeah I hate to admit it, but when I parked the Audi next to the Mazda I still preferred the look of the Audi. It sits low, looks mean with the DRLs, and just packs the business. Not to say the M3 isn't a pretty car, particularly in red, but the Audi just has something about it.

It reminds me of one of my first girlfriends. Blonde smokeshow, great to be around, excellent arm candy, but drove me nuts. Was much happier when it was out of my life. I believe I'll feel the same about the Audi when it's new owner picks it up tomorrow :)
 

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Welcome aboard.


Be really careful with that paint. A detailer friend of mine was astonished at how soft soul red is.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G891A using Tapatalk
 

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yeah I hate to admit it, but when I parked the Audi next to the Mazda I still preferred the look of the Audi. It sits low, looks mean with the DRLs, and just packs the business. Not to say the M3 isn't a pretty car, particularly in red, but the Audi just has something about it.
Mazda 3s can get pretty low and mean with a little tinkering... >:)


CK
 

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Yup no doubt the Audis look great. Mazda has really stood out from its lower end competitors in recent years in my opinion, inching towards those higher end brands as far as styling and to some extent interiors.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The evil looking daytime run lights and the interior won me over on the 3. Coming from the Audi, the 6 felt very similar to the A4, but I'm an inner city dweller now. I like that the hatch is such a short car, but still plenty of room inside.

I had the dealer fit the Android Auto upgrade at their expense as well. That was a nice bonus!
 

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10 days now with the Mazda, and I'm infinitely happier with it than the Audi.

There were certain things the Audi did better. Thicker steel, more durable paint, more sound deadening, and the big one - all the buttons were backlit (windows, sunroof, etc). But that's all manageable. The one thing I'm really missing is the dynamic parking lines. Is there any way to get them on the Mazda?

What I love is the 2.5L engine in a light frame. The car has a heap more performance, and the soul red is just gorgeous. She polished and waxed up well.

The Android Auto integration is also flawless. I was disappointed in the lack of touch screen at first but now I find the commander module does the job perfectly. Great work by Mazda there.
 

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Wow thats good to hear coming from Audi you dig the performance. I have an 05 forester XT that is pretty quick (basically a WRX wagon) and the mazda also compares favorably in some ways, at least until I get the XT tuned on the dyno next month. Even then it wont match the chassis of the mazda.
 

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10 days now with the Mazda, and I'm infinitely happier with it than the Audi.

There were certain things the Audi did better. Thicker steel, more durable paint, more sound deadening, and the big one - all the buttons were backlit (windows, sunroof, etc). But that's all manageable. The one thing I'm really missing is the dynamic parking lines. Is there any way to get them on the Mazda?

What I love is the 2.5L engine in a light frame. The car has a heap more performance, and the soul red is just gorgeous. She polished and waxed up well.

The Android Auto integration is also flawless. I was disappointed in the lack of touch screen at first but now I find the commander module does the job perfectly. Great work by Mazda there.
I have to agree. When I travel, I typically rent higher end cars just to treat myself / do a comparison against my "economy" 2014 Mazda3 Touring. The last was a BMW 430i and while I wont deny that it is a plusher experience in the BMW, the price difference does not justify it.

The BMW feels more solid, there is certainly more car between you and the road. Mirrors that automatically adjusts to show you the curb when you park, power folding mirrors, fully lit switches, well bolstered thigh support, improved insulation are all things I miss (and the retractable roof but that's apples to oranges :nerd:). I liked fuel efficiency gained from start/stop in city traffic but its more like a necessary evil IMO.

The Mazda3 actually feels more 'chuckable' as I can come into a corner way too fast but the chassis will sort itself out. The 430i felt heavier and not as willing, but a dab of throttle to induce over-steer and it was just as capable. The auto climate control is simpler and cools faster in the Mazda than the BMW but I'll chalk that up to rental abuse. I hated BMW iDrive vs Mazda Connect and to add insult to injury it only supported Car Play, no Android Auto. In my car its the opposite, home brewed AA only. I will say, you have to keep the revs up high in the BMW engine before it feels sporty but the Mazda doesn't even have 3/4 the RPM range haha

$16K more + the increased maintenance costs for some switch lighting, sound deadening, and motorized mirrors? Hard pass.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Speaking of the BMW, the Audi had the same problem. The body roll around corners was a bit unreal compared to the Mazda. There's one tight bend on the way to the gym that if I take at the same speed in the Mazda, the Mazda sticks to it like glue. I was worried sometimes the Audi would flip!

I completely agree RE: the extra cash plus maintenance for that bit of plushness. It's just not worth it. Particularly given on the euro that everything is guaranteed to break, and it is guaranteed to cost a small fortune to repair.

As an example, when I bought the Audi the last owner had clearly spilled something over the interface controls. Probably coffee or soda or something. All the buttons were sticky, and some wouldn't pop up when you pressed them. I tried to pull apart the dash to fix them, but all the clips broke and the buttons were unrepairable. Total cost was $1250 to replace them, and had to get the dealer to code them to the car thanks to "component protection".

Same thing on the Mazda. The last owner had clearly spilt something on the buttons, and same problem, the buttons weren't popping up on the commander switch. One screw later, the centre dash was out. Two plugs and a bit of jigging, the commander switch was out. 6 screws later, I had the commander module apart. Two minutes later I had all the buttons and the housing in a soap bath and just wiped the modules down, all the brown gunk disappeared. Total 20 mins work, and the commander module was back up and running.

I won't ever be going back to the German marques ...
 

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Speaking of the BMW, the Audi had the same problem. The body roll around corners was a bit unreal compared to the Mazda. There's one tight bend on the way to the gym that if I take at the same speed in the Mazda, the Mazda sticks to it like glue. I was worried sometimes the Audi would flip!

I completely agree RE: the extra cash plus maintenance for that bit of plushness. It's just not worth it. Particularly given on the euro that everything is guaranteed to break, and it is guaranteed to cost a small fortune to repair.

As an example, when I bought the Audi the last owner had clearly spilled something over the interface controls. Probably coffee or soda or something. All the buttons were sticky, and some wouldn't pop up when you pressed them. I tried to pull apart the dash to fix them, but all the clips broke and the buttons were unrepairable. Total cost was $1250 to replace them, and had to get the dealer to code them to the car thanks to "component protection".

Same thing on the Mazda. The last owner had clearly spilt something on the buttons, and same problem, the buttons weren't popping up on the commander switch. One screw later, the centre dash was out. Two plugs and a bit of jigging, the commander switch was out. 6 screws later, I had the commander module apart. Two minutes later I had all the buttons and the housing in a soap bath and just wiped the modules down, all the brown gunk disappeared. Total 20 mins work, and the commander module was back up and running.

I won't ever be going back to the German marques ...
Hehe, I can relate.

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