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2005 Mazda Mazda3

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$1,612 — $6,536 USED
20
Photos
Sedan
5 Seats
28-31 MPG
(Combined)
Key specs of the base trim
 — 
Compare 3 trims

Overview

Is this the car for you?

The Good

  • Stylish appearance (especially the hatchback)
  • Steering and handling
  • Driving ease
  • Front occupant space

The Bad

  • Instrument readability
  • Backseat space
  • Engine noise on hard acceleration
  • Seat comfort

What to Know

about the 2005 Mazda Mazda3
  • 2.0- or 2.3-liter four-cylinder
  • Manual or automatic
  • Sedan or hatchback
  • Sporty Mazda styling and personality

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2005 Mazda Mazda3 Review

from the Cars.com expert editorial team

Vehicle Overview
Mazda’s larger, more powerful replacements for the departed Proteg� sedan and Proteg�5 hatchback went on sale in the 2004 model year. Built on the same platform as the Volvo S40 and the European version of the Ford Focus, the compact, front-wheel-drive Mazda3 has entirely different styling. A 2.0-liter four-cylinder goes into the Mazda3 i sedan, while the Mazda3 s sedan and hatchback use a more powerful 2.3-liter four-cylinder.

For 2005, Sirius Satellite Radio is available and new 15-inch wheel covers are installed. At the 2005 Los Angeles Auto Show, a Special Edition Mazda3 debuted. It featured a leather interior, premium audio, high-gloss 17-inch alloy wheels, rain-sensing wipers and Carbon Gray Mica paint.

Exterior
Comparatively upright in profile, the Mazda3 is built with a wide track and a relatively long (103.9-inch) wheelbase for its size. A Sports Package that includes sport bumpers, side skirts, 17-inch wheels and fog lamps is available on s models.

Steel wheels hold 15-inch tires on the Mazda3 i sedan; the Mazda3 s sedan gets 16-inch alloy wheels, while the Mazda3 s hatchback rolls on 17-inch rubber. The wagonlike hatchback has small triangular rear quarter windows. Sedans get a short but high rear deck.

Interior
Up to five people can fit inside the Mazda3. The steering column tilts and telescopes. Instruments sit in a trio of round recessed nacelles. A ratchet-type mechanism permits seat adjustment allowing the cushion and seatback to move up an...

Vehicle Overview
Mazda’s larger, more powerful replacements for the departed Proteg� sedan and Proteg�5 hatchback went on sale in the 2004 model year. Built on the same platform as the Volvo S40 and the European version of the Ford Focus, the compact, front-wheel-drive Mazda3 has entirely different styling. A 2.0-liter four-cylinder goes into the Mazda3 i sedan, while the Mazda3 s sedan and hatchback use a more powerful 2.3-liter four-cylinder.

For 2005, Sirius Satellite Radio is available and new 15-inch wheel covers are installed. At the 2005 Los Angeles Auto Show, a Special Edition Mazda3 debuted. It featured a leather interior, premium audio, high-gloss 17-inch alloy wheels, rain-sensing wipers and Carbon Gray Mica paint.

Exterior
Comparatively upright in profile, the Mazda3 is built with a wide track and a relatively long (103.9-inch) wheelbase for its size. A Sports Package that includes sport bumpers, side skirts, 17-inch wheels and fog lamps is available on s models.

Steel wheels hold 15-inch tires on the Mazda3 i sedan; the Mazda3 s sedan gets 16-inch alloy wheels, while the Mazda3 s hatchback rolls on 17-inch rubber. The wagonlike hatchback has small triangular rear quarter windows. Sedans get a short but high rear deck.

Interior
Up to five people can fit inside the Mazda3. The steering column tilts and telescopes. Instruments sit in a trio of round recessed nacelles. A ratchet-type mechanism permits seat adjustment allowing the cushion and seatback to move up and down together. Placing the rear-suspension coil springs beneath the floor increases the hatchback’s rear storage space.

Under the Hood
The 2.0-liter four-cylinder in the Mazda3 i develops 148 horsepower (144 hp in Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle form). The Mazda3 s uses a 2.3-liter four-cylinder that pumps out 160 hp. A five-speed-manual gearbox is standard, and a four-speed-automatic transmission with a manual-shift provision is optional.

Safety
All-disc antilock brakes, side-impact airbags and side curtain-type airbags are included in an option package.

Driving Impressions
The easy-to-drive Mazda3 handles more adeptly than most rivals. Performance with the larger engine falls short of some sporty compacts, but it will satisfy most drivers. The automatic transmission delivers quick, smooth responses. The engine is generally quiet, but it emits a fair amount of blare when pushed. With an easy-shifting manual gearbox and well-behaved clutch, even the Mazda3 i with the smaller engine feels more spirited than an upper-level model with the automatic.

The front seats are nicely shaped, but the seatbacks are on the hard side. Rear legroom is limited, but foot space is good. Headroom is average in the rear but meager in the center position. Visibility is good. The instruments are difficult to see on dark days but lit nicely at night.

Consumer Reviews

What drivers are saying

4.6
53 reviews — Read All reviews
Exterior Styling
(4.6)
Performance
(4.6)
Interior Design
(4.5)
Comfort
(4.4)
Reliability
(4.7)
Value For The Money
(4.7)

Read reviews that mention:

(5.0)

It’s a fine little car(hatchback)

by Jooker52 from Omaha Nebraska on August 13, 2019

I thought this car was just a little hatchback with not a lot of power. But it’s really fun to drive and it has a lot of power for a little car. Read full review

(5.0)

Impressed

by Brian from RI on July 6, 2019

Just picked one up used for kids. Seems well put together. Was garaged and kept in good repair. I really like the performance and handling. Read full review

Safety

Recalls and crash tests

Recalls

The 2005 Mazda Mazda3 currently has 2 recalls


Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2005 Mazda Mazda3 has not been tested.

Latest 2005 Mazda3 Stories

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Mazda3 received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker

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