We use cookies on whatcar.com to improve your browsing experience and to provide you with relevant content and advertising, by continuing to use our site you agree to this. Please see our privacy policy for more details. Continue

What Car? says

4 out of 5 stars

For It's roomy, well made, affordable, and sweet to drive. It looks good, too

Against It has a firm-ish ride around town, and some road noise on the motorway

Verdict It's not as cheap as a Mondeo or Vectra, but it is a notch classier in most respects

Go for… 2.0 D 140bhp TS

Avoid… 2.0 S

Mazda 6 Estate
  • 1. A few owners have reported clutch failure on both diesels and petrols with fewer than 30,000 miles on the clock
  • 2. The load area is easy to get at and the seats drop easily and quickly, with no need to remove the headrests
  • 3. S trim is at the bottom of the range, but still has plenty of kit, including air-con and a CD player
  • 4. The rear seats are comfortable enough for three people
  • 5. The 2.0-litre petrol is a decent engine, but the 140bhp diesel is better still
advertisement

Mazda 6 Estate full review with expert trade views

The Mazda is a good-looking family estate that delivers on all fronts. But, perhaps most imoprtantly, the load area is usefully shaped, easy to get at, and, when you need more room, the rear seats drop easily and quickly, with no need to remove the headrests first. To cap it all, the cabin is roomy enough for five, and the driver’s seat suits all shapes and sizes, with a good view out.

Then, of course, because it’s a Mazda, it promises to stay super-reliable provided you service it properly. And, where older Mazdas hid their talents beneath dull bodies and yawn-some cabins, this one is handsome. The quality of the materials is good, too, and the workmanship looks top-notch.

Best of all, its quality goes more than skin-deep. The range gained four stars out of five from Euro NCAP for occupant crash protection, but only one star out of four for protecting pedestrians.

It's every bit as good to drive, too - the estate has direct steering and handles tidily. The ride’s generally comfortable, too - although it's definitely on the firm side at low speeds, it settles nicely once you reach out-of-town speeds. Even on the motorway, the cabin is refined, although, whatever engine you choose, you will hear some engine noise if you work it hard.

Trade view

John Owen

All models desirable. Plenty of load & passenger space. Diesels best choice

John Owen
Buyer,
Fords of Winsford

The smallest petrol engine in the estate is a 128bhp 2.0, and it's capable enough, but not the best choice. Instead, try to find one of the two 2.0 diesels, with either 119bhp or 140bhp, which have just the kind of strong low-rev pull that you need in a hard-working estate. Preferably, go for the 140bhp version because, besides its extra power, it also covers a few more miles per gallon.

Whatever engine you go for, you'll find plenty of equipment. Even the cheapest S models have standard air-con and a CD player.

TS trim is the top-seller, which is handy, as it's the best trim to go for. It's got everything you’d want, including alloy wheels and climate control. There’s also the dearer TS2, which adds an electric sunroof, traction control and a CD multichanger, but the TS suits us just fine.

Trade view

Duncan McLure-Fisher

Electrical problems have brought down the usual Mazda reliability

Duncan McLure-Fisher
Managing Director,
Warranty Direct

Mazda dealers charge plenty for servicing and repairs, although most, at least, will treat you politely and fairly. During the car’s early years, it is probably worth staying with them to get a set of Mazda stamps on the service records.

Because Mazdas are so dependable, you shouldn’t see many unexpected bills until well into the 6’s life. Switching to an independent garage should cut your costs, but it may not be as easy to find a specialist as if you owned a Ford or Vauxhall. On the other hand, it keeps a bigger chunk of its value over time than a Mondeo or Vectra.

Insurance groups are low for a big estate: group 7 for 119bhp 2.0 diesel, and group 9 for the 2.0 petrol and 140bhp 2.0 diesel.

As you’d guess, the diesels travel furthest per gallon, the 140bhp returning up to 46mpg overall and the 119bhp 43mpg. The 2.0 petrol manages 35mpg.

Trade view

John Owen

All models desirable. Plenty of load & passenger space. Diesels best choice

John Owen
Buyer,
Fords of Winsford

Although Mazdas are renowned as reliable pieces of engineering, clutches can be a problem on the 6.

Some diesel cars suffer from a vibrating clutch, but this can easily be cured by dealers, who will fit a modified part, and usually free of charge. Worse still, a few owners (of petrols and diesels) have reported total clutch failure with fewer than 30,000 miles on the clock, which is premature. However, when this does happen, the dealers have picked up the bill for a replacement.

There have been several recalls for the estate, most affecting cars built during 2003 and 2004. The most serious is to fix possible fuel leaks, but others cover a stalling glitch, a duff brake warning light, an oil seal and a loose foglamp. So, if you're looking at an affected car, check the logbook to make sure the work was done.

Otherwise, Mazdas always rate well in the What Car? Reliability Index and the JD Power customer satisfaction surveys, so you shouldn’t experience many problems provided that you keep that service book stamped and up to date - and the previous owner did the same.

Trade view

Duncan McLure-Fisher

Electrical problems have brought down the usual Mazda reliability

Duncan McLure-Fisher
Managing Director,
Warranty Direct
Haymarket Logo What Car? is brought to you by Haymarket Consumer Media
What Car? is part of Haymarket Motoring
© Haymarket Media Group 2014