2004 to 2020 Mazda 3 Forum and Mazdaspeed 3 Forums banner

1 - 20 of 35 Posts

·
Gearhead
Joined
·
1,841 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Our new Mazda 3 was produced in Japan in February. What you are looking below at is a screen print taken from the "order status" computer by the Sales Manager at my Power Mazda dealership on March 9th. As you can see, it says Actual Departure March 5th. It takes 14 or 15 days to cross the Pacific to the Mazda port closest to me (Tacoma). Was going to track our Mazda 3's ship across the Pacific to Tacoma.



Here's where however, it starts to get real ugly, and I am now far from pleased.

Ten days ago, I emailed a Mazda Customer Experience rep Brittney, who was friendly and helpful six weeks ago. She had earlier given me her email, her personal email and her work desk phone, and she said if she could ever help, to recontact her. This time no response for five days, so I called and left her a voice mail. No response for a couple more. So last Thursday, when I thought maybe Britney was on vacation, I re-called Mazda Customer Experience (MCE), this time talking with Lyndsey who said, "I will by tomorrow, Saturday at the latest, email you with the name of the ship your car is on." No email response since last Thursday, so I called MCE yesterday and they said, "Your car is still in Japan." While I was firm, I was also very polite, and I said, based on the above Mazda screen print, "that is not true," and we agreed I would immediately sent them a copy of the above Mazda computer screen print showing my car had been on the transport ship as far back as 15 days ago. Which I did, but still no response yet from MCE.

Thankfully my dealership's wonderful Sales Manager, and I mean that totally, with no sarcasm, and I had talked yesterday at 10:00 AM and he committed to "calling everyone I know who can help find your car, including my friend at the Tacoma port." He is a man of his word, and called me very early this morning to say, your car is still in Japan, not yet on a ship, and it is scheduled to now arrive in Tacoma on mid next month. He says he can not explain the major discrepancy between this and the above screen print showing it left port on March 5th. Good thing that someone on the Mazda team (my Sales Manager) cared enough to find out the real story about our car. He predicts it will now arrive at his dealership roughly early May.

When it arrives, I will more than closely inspect it, for why was it once loaded onto a ship, departed the port, yet now still in Japan?

Only two options I can think of?

1) Was it Mazda' original plan to load it on a smaller transport ship, take it to Hiroshima, unload it, then when Hiroshima-produced Mazdas reached a certain amount, load them and the Hofu produced 3's together into a 4,600 vehicle carrying RO-RO? (That is unlikely, an expensive, risky method of transporting brand new vehicles, but possible.)

OR???

2) Did it get damaged in the loading process inside the ship? Was it then unloaded and is now being repaired?

I hope not, for if that were to have happened, if the paint is not perfectly matching every single panel (notwithstanding and understanding why the front fascia is sometimes off a fraction in color), I will not be buying this car. [My friend who has owned his body shop for 40 years will be joining me at that inspection.] Hope it does not come to having to walk away from this our 3, for this will be my wife's driver, and a Mazda 3 hatch is what she really wants. It is going to not only be inspected on the ground for whatever length of time it takes, but then they will be putting it onto a service rack so I and their best Tech and my body-shop friend can also inspect it from below.

Lots more to this story. Right now I am less than a happy camper, but willing to see how this unfolds for we really do want a Mazda 3 in our garage.

If however the arrival inspection shows a single sign of having been damaged/repaired, that will be the end of our Mazda love affair, for while it will cost $7,000 more, guess what that same first week of May brings (???), the projected "2018 WRX ordering-opening window" (and we both LOVE our '17 WRX).

If not for the great help today from my Mazda Sales Manager, I would already have, sadly, already moved on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
198 Posts
Having personally ordered and waited for cars to be built, the eager anticipation can be very stressful. My advice would be to put your mind on other things, as much as possible, and try not to over-project about what may have happened. I've never heard a case of Mazda shipping an imperfect new vehicle, and doubt that yours would arrive defective. As hard as it may seem, try to detach your mind a little, and not cheat yourself of a good – although delayed – experience. Deep breath, my friend! This too shall pass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
I order vehicles as part of my job every day. The lack of proper tracking by the manufacturers is astounding. FedEx can track a $5 package all the way around the world, down to the hour, if not minutes. Yet a $25,000 (or more) vehicle can't. I've always said their should be a barcode under (or above) the VIN plate and the vehicle should be scanned in everytime it departs and arrives during each phase of production...

Good luck getting your car. It will obviously happen, but as Steven said above, try to focus on other things.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
266 Posts
Having personally ordered and waited for cars to be built, the eager anticipation can be very stressful. My advice would be to put your mind on other things, as much as possible, and try not to over-project about what may have happened. I've never heard a case of Mazda shipping an imperfect new vehicle, and doubt that yours would arrive defective. As hard as it may seem, try to detach your mind a little, and not cheat yourself of a good – although delayed – experience. Deep breath, my friend! This too shall pass.
Good advice.

I once took factory delivery of a Volvo in Sweden, and many weeks after arriving back in the States I got a call from my U.S. salesman asking me how I liked my Volvo now that I was driving it at home. I still didn't have the car (it was a few weeks late, which I hadn't really noticed) - when he found out I didn't have the car, he went into action and discovered it was sitting in a back lot in the port at Baltimore. No reason was given, some goof-off had just forgotten about it. With the salesman's prompting, the car was released the next day, and I went to my local dealer to pick it up a few days later. Now, I didn't need the car so it didn't really matter, but if I'd needed it, I would have been following it just as closely as the OP is following his car.
 

·
Gearhead
Joined
·
1,841 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
You all make really good points, at the same time, I had not planned dates, projected backwards until Mazda's own document said, "Actual Port Departure: March 5th".

Having worked for FedEx Freight, I sure understand the point you made @MySynpai, that millions of small packages are tracked very accurately every day by FedEx, UPS, etc., yet all of the major manufacturers have no clue as to where a hugely-expensive (in comparison), hugely-large item such as a vehicle, is located from the second it leaves the assembly plant grounds. That is screwed up. Oh well, it will get here when it gets here, and I will drive it, thoroughly enjoy it!

I just hope it has not been damaged in transit, for having worked for car companies and/or been involved in the "vehicle business" since 1964, I know that not every vehicle arrives at its destination dealer/location in the same condition it left the factory (understatement). I hope mine is "factory pristine" upon its arrival!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
510 Posts
as someone who tracked his vehicle without the help of the dealership, i understand how you feel. mainly because the model i wanted had to be built from scratch. i tracked my car by finding the ship and tracked it's gps on my own cause these datas are available online. and i was constantly pestering the dealership to check if they've got control of them when the ship docked.

though with that mentioned, how much of the shipping yard is under mazda's control. granted that they may/ may not have staff onsite, i strongly believe anyone at the docks are not under mazda payroll. but with the options you're thinking off, i feel that 1 maybe the slightly correct hunch. because iirc, most mazdas out of japan come from the hiroshima docks.
 

·
2018 Mazda6 Signature
Joined
·
503 Posts
@Road Trip

My friend, never fear. I had a hell of a time when I ordered my Mazda. First of all, I had been diligently saving all my pennies for a matter of 2 years before ordering my '16 sGT. So my love affair was deeply cemented at the time of ordering and I knew patience was going to be difficult.

When I went into the dealership, I had never met the Sales Manager - he ended up being integral to the whole process. I had originally been quoted 4 - 6 weeks from order to delivery; though I went into this whole thing expecting at least 8 weeks. So at the end of November '15, he put the order in and said he would send me the screenshot showing it being built the following week. Well I got nothing. So I reached out to him and he says, "hmm, that's weird. Doesn't look like anything has happened with it for now." However, the very next day he sent me the screen shot showing Mazda has it and it's entered the manufacturing process. He said from there, it doesn't take long to build and get it onto the ship. So that was at the very beginning of Dec '15. So I'm thinking, "great! Maybe I really will have this thing by mid-Jan '16..." Boy was I wrong...

Patiently awaiting a similar screenshot to what you've posted above, a couple weeks went by, and I got nothing. Not wanting the badger the guy, I held off, but finally closing in on Christmas '15, I sent him an email saying "hey, what's up? Where are we?" Expecting he just forgot and I'd get the information I wanted, he replied with, "hmmm, that's strange I still see it in the manufacturing process with no update since we last spoke at the beginning of Dec '15". So I'm thinking, awesome...here we go...

I sent him another email the following week after Christmas -- still no changes. An email around New Years -- still no changes. And then on Jan 7th, 2016, he sent me an email and said, "it's finally on the ship!" So in looking at the original screen, the thing sat in MFG for the entire month. Build date began on Jan 3rd, and completed on Jan 5th (or so the dates said). So now I'm thinking, "awesome, it's on the ship -- one month or so to go." It was coming directly to the Port of Baltimore. Obviously the ship had a long way to travel. Well around Feb 10th, I sent him an email and got an email that it arrived at Port on Feb 9th and I should see it within the week. So excited!

So a week went by...and nothing. With patience wearing ridiculously thin, I email the guy again. He said, "I'm sorry, but I still see it at port. I'll see if I can get more information." No information came. Another week went by. Feeling disenchanted now, it was the end of February and still nothing. The thing as been "at Port" for 3 weeks. Beginning to think the worst, I too assumed the vehicle had been damaged in transport and whatever work was occurring was taking a long time. Hell, at this point I wasn't gonna be surprised if I got an email saying it had accidentally fallen into the ocean. So I emailed my guy and he said he was going to start turning over stones, as it was not normal for a vehicle to be at Port for so long. He ended up getting in touch with the "District Manager" and he was able to get to the bottom of it -- "This is a customer order, been at Port for 3 weeks, wtf? blah blah blah." He was able to confirm that there was no damage to the vehicle and that Port was just severely backed up. They said they were going to "bump my car to the front" and get it on a transport that week.

Well at the end of that week (Beginning of Mar '16) my Sales guy finally called and let me know it was on a transport! Thank God! It came the following week.

So it was a grueling 3 1/2 month process. One filled with its highs and lows, but the car did finally arrive. I had a checklist a mile long that made a 120-point inspection look like a joke. I went over it top to bottom. Finally seeing the car was completely worth it though. Mind you, I had my heart set on this car since it came out in 2014.

My only educated guess is Mazda's tracking system is just wonky. They probably don't have "a lot" of people order cars, so it's not a process they have refined or worked out for consistency. But who knows.

In the end @Road Trip, Don't get disheartened -- I'm sure the vehicle is fine. Your wait will be well worth the frustration experienced. That Soul Red will bring a smile to your face on every sunny day and each mod you have picked out for it will make it more and more worth it. Hang tight - it will get here!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Road Trip

·
Registered
Joined
·
659 Posts
When my sales guy says "you don't want to order a car" i always thought he was just looking out for his bottom line...maybe i'll take him a bit more seriously next time i'm pondering it.

My brother ordered a 2016 WRX STI, ended up driving around a regular WRX for awhile from the dealer while it came because the severely underestimated the time frame.

Best of luck to you OP, sounds like a serious exercise in patience!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
As others have said, stop following along so closes d freaking yourself out. Dealers sell cars, they're terrible at knowing how long they take to get to you. Back when I ordered my 2014 STI I followed it religiously and it went about as well as your situation is going. I made up all sorts of stories in my head about what was happening to my car. In the end the car was late but everything was fine.
 

·
Gearhead
Joined
·
1,841 Posts
Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Thanks guys!

Patience has never been a virtue of mine. In fact, on one job reference a person writing my recommendation said, "he is the master of constructive impatience, always moving forward to accomplishing something new." In the thumbnail below, was something I was given fifty years ago, though in a slightly different form of a black light poster, with two buzzards circling over the desert below, a person you could barely see, struggling to take his last, dying steps...

Much calmer today. My wife and I spend two hours last night going over every vehicle under $30K that meets our requirements (hatch, stick, fun to drive, well made, reasonable or better interior with leather), and surprise, we enthusiastically came to a Mazda 3 GT hatch manual -- oh yes, that is what we ordered and is coming our way.

We just dialed back our expectations, now for a May delivery.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
294 Posts
I leased my 3 back in December 2014. It was supposed to arrive in a week. After said week, the dealership said the car "disappeared", so they graciously upgraded me to a Tech package model on the lot, albeit a different color. I think I was pretty fortunate. I'd say there's something wonky about the whole process haha
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
327 Posts
Wow, I now realize how lucky I was that my sales manager could find one to my spec already on the boat and secure it for me. At that point it was still 5 weeks away.

That was my second exterior color choice. My primary color choice did not exist with my interior and option packages so would've had to be ordered - which he promised would add 2 months to the time frame. In the end I took the one that was already on it's way and even waiting that amount of time was excruciating.

All I can say is that in the end the wait will be worth it and to hang in there :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Although you are naturally disappointed, there are just some things we can't control. Your new Mz3 GT will be a thing of beauty with the options/packages you've selected. Although, I'm sure, all you wanted was candid communication, that just didn't happen in this case. Don't let it get you down any longer. Anticipate the day you and your wife pick it up and , happily discuss who will be the first one behind the wheel.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
I missed the beginning of this whole story. I actually had no idea you even could get a built-to-order Mazda in the US. What are the advantages of doing it that way? Do you get an a-la-carte choice of options rather than whole trim levels/packages? Is there a thread about this perhaps that somebody could refer me to?

The pre-built car I found actually came pretty close to my "perfect" configuration. If I could pick-and-choose I would've gone with sand rather than black seats (I'm weird that way :laugh2:) which is a config that I couldn't find online at all, even after widening the search radius to 500 miles. Other than that it was pretty much it, although I had to go with a 2016 model because I wanted a 2.0 engine and a sunroof and that's an impossible combo with the 2017 refresh.
 

·
Gearhead
Joined
·
1,841 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Just visit this site, build your Mazda (all models), print it out, and head to your dealership, agree on a price and have them order it. Typically order times for the mazda 3 right now are 3-4 months, and that is going to be what mine ends up being.

https://www.mazdausa.com/vehicles/mazda3-hatchback

What I like is that we get exactly the colors and options we want, do not pay for any that are on the car "closest to we want" at that dealer -- or available by dealer trade". Or, conversely, we do not "miss out" on an option we want that is not at that dealer and not available for a dealer to dealer trade.

The downside is what this thread is about, that you wait and wait and wait, and sometimes impatience rears its head (e.g., me in this thread).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Thanks for the link. I understand your point, and I'd be all for buying cars that way, but I'm frankly severely underwhelmed by what Mazda offers there. Considering that the cars are built to order, they could've given the customers way more flexibility. Instead, they seem to offer the same trim levels and packages as for pre-built cars.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
327 Posts
Building to order isn't about additional flexibility or "a-la carte" options. It's about getting exactly what you want if what you're looking for isn't already on a lot accessible to you and you're not willing to compromise on something a little different that may already be built and on a lot somewhere.

I compromised, took one that was already en route. If I wasn't willing to compromise I could've got my primary choice, it just would've taken additional time. My last car was wrecked and I needed a car to replace it - I didn't have the time to wait for an order so I compromised (otherwise I would've waited). If the cars were around a little longer when I was shopping I probably would've picked one off of a lot to get into it sooner - but back then there wasn't even a 17 hatch GT with the options I wanted around yet. 4 weeks in a rental car then another week or two of borrowing a car from in-laws was as much waiting as I could handle.

Roadtrip has the luxury of planning his purchase and was not willing to compromise - thus the order was made exactly to his liking :) The downside is the patience required to wait a potentially substantial period of time between the decision to purchase and when you get to take delivery.

I can only imagine how sweet of a feeling it is though to take the keys to a car you know you ordered from the factory just for you. I imagine it adds to the experience.
 
1 - 20 of 35 Posts
Top