Mazda is a multinational auto manufacturer of Japanese origin headquartered in Hiroshima, Japan. Founded in 1920 by Jujiro Matsuda, the Mazda Motor Corporation has become one of the most successful automobile companies in the world.
Back in 2015, Mazda was recognized as the fifteenth largest automaker in the world based on its production capacity. The bulk of Mazda’s customers and its revenue are from the North American continent, especially Canada and the United States.
Mazda boasts a line of different vehicles ranging from full-size SUVs to subcompact cars. A number of its vehicles have been rated #1 in their class by respected agencies such as US News and Car and Driver.
It has also partnered with giant auto companies in the past, including Ford and Toyota, to help produce exciting rides with their creative input.
The Mazda Motor Corporation began issuing recalls in 1977 and has issued 604 of them since then, according to NHTSA. This represents no less than 1.7% of all recalls recorded by the NHTSA since 1966.
Below are the Mazda models with the most recalls:
1. Mazda 6
Mazda began production of the Mazda 6 in 2002, and it soon became one of the fastest-selling cars in the brand’s history. Classified as a mid-size sedan, the Mazda 6 is currently in its third generation and has multiple hundreds of thousands of sales to show for it.
It is also very popular amongst consumers and has won several awards, including “The Best Family Sedan” in Motorweek’s Driver’s Choice Awards, 2009.
Number of Recalls
With 81 recalls on record, the Mazda 6 is the most-recalled Mazda model in history. Might we mention it is not even the oldest car in Mazda’s lineup? ARFC.org estimated this figure equates to about 13.4% of all Mazda recalls since 1977.
The 2009 and 2010 model years of the Mazda 6 have the joint most-recalls among all models, with 11 each. Behind these models is the 2012 Mazda 6 with 7 recalls, and the 2003 model seizes the third spot with 6 recalls.
If you are looking to cop a Mazda 6, the abovementioned models, especially the first two, are those you might want to push to the bottom of your list.
1 recall each makes the 2002 and 2017 model years of the Mazda 6 the least-recalled models. The 2018 and 2019 Mazda 6 models are the second least-recalled models with just 2.
Below are common issues with the Mazda 6 as drawn from recall statements over the years:
- Airbag faults (possible damage of occupant classification system due to debris from the welding process of the front passenger seat frame, likely explosion of inflator due to propellant degradation)
- Fuel system issues (fuel tank appears to be fillable beyond its rated capacity, possible intrusion of spiders in the evaporative canister vent hose and resultant blockade and extreme level of negative pressure in the fuel tank)
- Parking brake problems (possible water entry into the brake caliper and potential corrosion of parking brake actuator shaft)
- Structural problems (possible corrosion of front cross member due to exposure to salted roads, stickiness of outer door handles, and resultant prevention of latching)
2. Mazda MPV
The Mazda MPV was a minivan offering of the Mazda Motor Corporation, produced and marketed between 1988 and 2016. During its run, the Mazda MPV provided customers with a decent level of satisfaction and lived up to its MPV “multi-purpose vehicle” tag.
Number of Recalls
Through 20+ years, three generations, and millions of units produced, Mazda recalled the MPV 53 times. This figure represents 8.8% of all Mazda recalls since 1977, making it the second most-recalled Mazda model on record.
The 1989, 2000, and 2004 models of the Mazda MVP have the joint most recalls, with 5 apiece. Sitting in second place are the 1990, 1991, and 2002 models, with 4 recalls each.
For the fewest recalls, we have the 1992-1998 Mazda MVP models and the 2006 models with 2 recalls each.
These figures largely show that the MVP’s recall figure is spread across its model years, and no one model has a particularly threatening figure.
Below are some of the most common issues with the Mazda MPV as gotten from recall statements:
- Electrical system issues (possible overheating of contact points in the ignition switch due to grease application)
- Airbag defects (potential explosion of inflator during crash due to propellant deterioration, improperly wired front passenger seat airbag)
- Equipment faults (failure to meet label measurement standards with airbag labels, incorrect tire inflation pressure on the certification label, incorrect gross axle weight rating on the label)
3. Mazda Tribute
The Mazda Tribute is a compact SUV produced and marketed by Mazda between 2000 and 2011. The Tribute was developed with help from the Ford Motor Company and was known as the less expensive version of the Ford Escape.
Australia was the Mazda Tribute’s major market before its discontinuation in 2011, where it was eventually replaced with the elegant Mazda CX-5.
Number of Recalls
The Mazda Tribute shares the second spot with the MPV on the list of most-recalled Mazda models with 53 recalls. An estimation by ARFC.org reveals it holds 8.8% of all Mazda recalls since 1977.
With 14 recalls on record, the 2001 Mazda Tribute is by far the most-recalled Tribute model on record. Right next to it is the 2002 Mazda Tribute with 8 recalls, the 2003 model with 7 recalls, and the 2004 and 2008 models with 6 recalls.
There is no gainsaying that the models listed directly above have recall figures that are indicative of a plethora of issues. So, if you are looking out on the market for a classic Tribute, you may want to avoid the models at the very top of that list.
The title of the least-recalled Mazda Tribute model goes to the 2009 Tribute, with just 1 recall on record. The 2010 and 2011 Mazda Tribute models also have 2 recalls each. Now, these low figures definitely add some points to the reliability score of these Tribute models.
Below is a compilation of predominant problems with the Mazda Tribute that have triggered recalls:
- Vehicle speed control issues (improper clearance between engine cover and speed control cable connector, resulting in a struck throttle when pedal is depressed)
- Steering faults (steering torque sensor unable to sense driver steering input and potential removal of electric power steering assist)
- Fuel system issues (possible crack of fuel delivery module and resultant leak, possible fuel odor, or fuel dripping from fuel line connector)
- Service brake problems (dislodged wire seals in ABS module connector and possible contamination of module connector and resultant electrical short)
4. Mazda CX-9
The Mazda CX-9 is an elegant crossover SUV manufactured by Mazda since 2006. It entered its second generation in 2016 and has sold hundreds of thousands of units so far. Besides this, the Mazda CX-9 is also rated by critics as one of the best vehicles in its class.
It was named the best mid-size SUV by Car and Driver in 2017 and was also MotorTrend’s SUV of the year in 2008.
Number of Recalls
Of the 604 recalls issued by Mazda since its inception, 48 of those have been for the Mazda CX-9. This earns it the #4 spot on our list while holding 7.9% of all Mazda recalls, according to ARFC.org.
The 2009 and 2010 models of the Mazda CX-9 have the joint most-recalls with 7 recalls apiece. The 2008 Mazda CX-9 is 2nd on the list with 6 recalls, and the 2007, 2012 and 2013 models have 5 recalls each.
With 1 recall each, the 2018 and 2019 models of the Mazda CX-9 are the least-recalled models. The 2015 Mazda CX-9 comes in at a 2nd place on this list with 2 recalls.
Below is a list of some issues that have necessitated recalls for the Mazda CX-9 over the years:
- Airbag faults (possible explosion of airbag inflator during crash due to propellant deterioration after excessive exposure to high humidity)
- Suspension issues (potential corrosion of front suspension ball joints due to water leak into the fittings)
- Steering problems (possible dismantling of steering knuckle due to loosening of lower mounting nuts and bolts that attach the knuckle to the front strut assembly)
- Electrical system issues (improperly installed wiring harness and possible disruption of electrical transmission and communications)
5. Mazda B-Series Truck
The Mazda B-Series is a vintage line of pickup trucks produced and sold by Mazda between 1961 and 2006. Production spanned five relatively successful generations until it was discontinued in 2006 (2009 in the U.S.) and replaced by the Mazda BT-50.
Number of Recalls
Mazda has recalled the classic workhorse known as the Mazda B-Series 46 times. According to ARFC.org, it takes up 7.6% of all Mazda recalls since 1977 and closes out our list of most-recalled Mazda models.
The 1994 and 2006 model years are the most-recalled models amongst B-Series models with 5 recalls. The 1998 and 2009 model years hold the second spot on the list with 4 recalls.
With 1 recall apiece, the 1991, 1992, and 2003 models are the least-recalled B-Series model years. Several B-Series models, including the 1995, 1996, and 2004 models of the Mazda B-Series, have 2 recalls each.
Below is a compilation of common problems with the Mazda B-Series:
- Airbag defects (possible explosion of inflator due to propellant degradation)
- Vehicle speed control issues (possible deterioration of cruise control deactivation switch and resultant smoke, burn or overheating)
- Tire problems (possible separation of tire tread during operation of the tires at low inflation pressure and high speed)