Saturday, March 7, 2020

New Jersey Giant: 2008 Mazda Mazdaspeed 3

I'm going to post this next car with a caveat that Brooklyn isn't a good place to buy a car...or probably much of anything.  The Big Apple is notorious for crappy roads, sketchy parking, bad weather, and well...New Yorkers.  Everybody who isn't trying to actually pick your pocket is probably trying to muscle something outta your bank account...not that there is anything wrong with that...but this next car seems to be a good deal and I have to admit that I would look past the zip code and consider this...wait...why does it have Jersey plates?  Is this the New York Giants of the car world? Find this 2008 Mazda Mazdaspeed 3 offered for $4995 in Brooklyn, NY via craigslist. Tip from ME.

From the seller:

2008 mazda mazdaspeed3
condition: excellent
cylinders: 4 cylinders
drive: fwd
fuel: gas
odometer: 69000
paint color: black
size: compact
title status: clean
transmission: manual
type: hatchback
You know why you're here. You like to be in control and row your own gears. You appreciate function and are not a fan of conspicuous peacockery. In the words of John Milton, you don't ever let them see you coming. But come you can and do, taking in the sweet sound of your (newly replaced) turbo spooling as it blows into a nearly 300HP 2.3L DISI engine mated to a 6-speed gearbox. But I digress.

This exceptionally maintained 2008 Mazdaspeed3 GT specimen with 169,9xx highway miles on its odo is being offered by its second owner. The interior sports factory BOSE radio and NAVI, comfortable bucket seats with Mazdaspeed embroidery, custom plastic weatherguard mats, front-facing smartly installed always-on dashcam, Bluetooth audio & phone connection, and a hardwire for Valentine One radar detector (not included). 40/60 foldable seats provide ample storage (easily fits a set of 4 wheels with room to spare). Currently dressed with a set of winter wheels (tires/rims), with an extra summer set included.

The car runs well and the list of parts replaced in the recent past is noted below. Most recently, a new (actual new OEM not a Chinese knock off) turbo has been replaced (over a thousand dollars between the turbo, labor, and gaskets). The old one felt less spunky and the oil consumption went up some so I did not want to risk it blowing up. The gearbox shifts like butter and the engine purs. The suspension has been continuously updated (see below), the rotors and brakes recently replaced, and spark plugs replaced in the fall. The battery is new and both sets of tires have plenty of tread left.

The car is used as a daily driver, averaging about 100 miles a day of highway driving (with MPG in the high 20s), hence none of the stop-and-go stress on the engine or brakes. There's a small dent on the lower rear quarter of the rear right door (as shown) but most people don't notice it unless pointed out.

Feel free to reach out and ask questions. I work in Jersey so can meet there as well. Serious offers will be entertained but please no low-balling.

Ran a compression test before replacing the turbo - all 4 cylinders were in the 185-190 psi range.
OEM cold air intake
New OEM K04 turbo (2/2020) - still have the old turbo, if you want it.
New AutoCraft Automotive Battery, Group Size 26R, 510 CCA (12/2019)
New AC compressor (warranty thru 11/20) and new serpentine belts (11/2019) - still have the old compressor, if you want it.
New KONI rear shocks (2/2019 and one replaced 2/2020) and springs sometime in 2017
New rotors and brakes (2/2019)
New spark plugs (9/2019)
New driver side Xenon HID Headlight Ballast (2/2020)
New xenon low beam headlight bulbs (both sides) (2/2020)
New rear sway bar bushings (10/2019)
New rear sway bar stabilizer links (3/2019)
New rear control arms (2/2019)
New rear lateral arms (2/2019)
New slave master cylinder (winter 2019)
New front stabilizer links (2/2019)
New trailing arm bushings (2/2019)
New engine mount (7/2018)
New front control arm and ball joint assembly (2/2017)
WeatherTech Custom Fit Front FloorLiner for Mazda 3 (Black)
New Bilstein (I think) front struts in 2017 if my memory serves me right
New air filter summer of 2018
Dedicated sets of summer tires (spring 2018) and winter tires (fall 2017)
2 Blackstone oil reports (9/2018 and 2/2019) - chemical analysis of used oil to monitor engine condition.

See a better way to drive something Mazdaspeedy?


  1. It says in the body that it's 169,000 mi. not the 69,000 at the top. Sketch, for sure.

  2. No sketchiness in the odo, likely an honest typo. I think 169k is the real number. I've looked at a lot of these, and while offering plenty of bang for the buck, they all seem to begin suffering huge problems at approximately this mileage. Plus, rust is a MAJOR issue on this generation of Mazda 3. Look very closely at the doglegs and the hatch. Plus the usual suspects: under the doors, underbody, sills, etc.
    Personally, I'd shy away. A Chevy HHR SS offers similar configuration and performance but without the established problems that we all know and love on both the MS3 and WRX wagon.

  3. Comes on guys!. Might this be paradise lost? A unicornia not in Californicornia? Given the literate and very unCraigslist like listing I'd take a look for sure...if it weren't in Dantes Infernoe...I mean New Brooklyn.

  4. I owned a brand new 2008.5 Mazdaspeed 3 in metropolitan Gray. I put 84000mi on that car hammering on it all the way. Clutchless upshifts, massive e-brake drifts and I can report it will pull all the way to 162mph (on a closed racetrack of course). Never gave me one problem and Mazda engineers themselves brag about this transmissions ability to take abuse and they weren't kidding. The engine is a torque monster with power down low. You can go second, fourth, sixth right onto the freeway. Personally I never saw anything near high 20 MPG. More like high-teens. But this is about as good a car as you can buy save for the fact it is front-wheel drive which was its downfall in my world.

    1. Imagine how awesome the MS3 would have been if it were rear-wheel-driven? Arrrgg...

  5. Usually New York cars that are ten years old are rusty rusty and crusty, and Mazdas are particularly prone to the rust monster, as well.


Commenting Commandments:
I. Thou Shalt Not write anything your mother would not appreciate reading.
II. Thou Shalt Not post as anonymous unless you are posting from mobile and have technical issues. Use name/url when posting and pick something Urazmus B Jokin, Ben Dover. Sir Edmund Hillary Clint don't matter. Just pick a nom de plume and stick with it.
III. Honor thy own links by using <a href ="http://www.linkgoeshere"> description of your link </a>
IV. Remember the formatting tricks <i>italics</i> and <b> bold </b>
V. Thou Shalt Not commit spam.
VI. To embed images: use [image src="" width="400px"/]. Limit images to no wider than 400 pixels in width. No more than one image per comment please.