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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all, I finally joined this forum. I've had my Mazda3 hatchback since new in 2004, first year of the 3 (in the US) and only year for yellow. Only OEM package is the moonroof/CD changer. It's my first stick shift car, and it's amazing to power through turns in second gear. Accelerating through turns, it balances and pulls through so smoothly. I actually enjoy that there is no touchscreen, ABS, or other fancy tech - just pure driving. And even though there are rock chips everywhere, the metallic paint still looks fantastic and I think the car's design still holds up.
It has been perfect in what a car should do, get you from A to B, and it's never left me stranded. I enjoy that I haven't had a payment since 2008 and my insurance is minimal since I dropped full coverage.
At about 208,000 miles, it's basically stock. I'm still on the original engine, transmission, clutch, and front brake pads (yes, really). Things I've done myself or with my dad:
Most oil changes every 7,500 mi
Spark plugs twice
Motor mount twice
Front shocks and struts
Rear brake pads
Coolant flush
Belts
Multiple filter changes
Added an aftermarket board for the stock radio to connect an aux cable

Things I've had done:
Air intake manifold (the only repair that stung)
1 CV axle at about 190k
2 alignments
3 sets of tires
A couple oil changes
Thermostat replacement
Gear oil changes

These photos are from when I hit 200,000 miles earlier this year.











 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks @MrBen . Always hand washed and sprayed with a wax-as-you-dry type product. Inside is great too, other than the drivers floor mat.

I have not touched the timing chain and don't plan on it. I haven't heard that it's an issue. I would think it should last as long as the engine, especially considering I'm on the original clutch.
 

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Mazda "E" Division
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1,290 Posts
Thanks @MrBen . Always hand washed and sprayed with a wax-as-you-dry type product. Inside is great too, other than the drivers floor mat.

I have not touched the timing chain and don't plan on it. I haven't heard that it's an issue. I would think it should last as long as the engine, especially considering I'm on the original clutch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks @MrBen . I'm taking my car to the dealership in mid December for a steering wheel cover recall, so I'll have them do an inspection and ask about this. My car hasn't been to a dealer since 2013! I don't currently hear any chain noise.
 
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