Author Topic: Wash's Mazda 3 Project  (Read 13490 times)

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Offline Wash

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Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« on: August 10, 2013, 01:23:39 AM »
So I bought this car a fair old while ago now and over the course of my ownership I've done a fair few things to it but never really documented much of it. Apologies about the rather ******ty pics too... lol

I have done a lot with the audio system in the car but I have already made a thread for that over here if you haven't already seen it: http://www.mazda3forums.co.uk/index.php?topic=11351.0
It needs updating though since I have done a lot with the ICE since then, hopefully I'll manage to update it soon.


When I bought it, it looked like this... A bog standard Mazda 3 TS 1.6 diesel.







I think one of the first things I did was change the front bumper for a sport one. This was also when I learned that the bonnet doesn't close with the sport bumper and the TS grille because the grille is too big so I had to cut it up to get the bonnet to shut. :D





Finally managed to find the front grille that I needed! It needs painting, I know.





Next I added the sport rear spoiler, the Mazda 3 looks seriously ugly without a rear spoiler.   :-\ The spoiler was stuck on with tigerseal and it's held up very well, I could probably stand on the spoiler and the spoiler would break before it detached itself from the car.





Found some new wheels and popped them on, the standard 15" wheels the car was on before look stupid. These are 17" BBS RKs, don't look amazing but much better than the standard wheels.





The standard headlight bulbs are appalling, I couldn't even tell whether they were on or not half the time so I bought a 4300K HID kit to replace the standard halogen bulbs. I also replaced the side lights for LED ones at the same time.





Covered the roof in a fake suede/alcantara fabric since I didn't really like the standard grey headlining on the Mazda 3. I used some spare sound deadening sheets I had left from deadening the doors on the roof.









After that I had the car lowered on Apex lowering springs, handling has much improved with a lot more stability and much less body roll. Achieved a drop of about 45ish mm at the front and 35-40mm at the rear so the stance had much improved too, getting rid of a lot the standard arch gap. I had all the brake discs, pads and fluid changed at the same time for new Pagid items along with a new timing belt, timing belt tensioner, water pump, thermostat, coolant and aux belt.









I've read in the US of a couple of people using 350z wheels as the centre bore is very similar (Mazda's is 67.1 whilst the 350z uses 66.1) so I bought a set. You need to use spacers (I used 3mm shims) on the rear just to get a bit more room to make up for the very slight difference between the centre bores.
These wheels were 7.5J ET30 front and 8J ET33 (ET30 with 3mm spacers) rear. They came with 225/45/17s front and 245/45/17s on the rears which are way too wide for the Mazda 3's wheel arches but I test fitted one anyway just to see what the fitment was like.



Same wheels with 195/45/17s on the front and 205/45/17s on the rear, giving a little bit of stretch.





Here's a few pics of them on the car, I think they look great on the Mazda 3! At the same time I sprayed the rear badges black (I removed the TS badge a long time ago for a cleaner look) and put on some pressed number plates to replace my old tatty broken ones.











Sourced an MPS interior and wasted no time in fitting it. I changed the mats for MPS ones too but I did that ages ago, I never took any pictures of them though because I felt a little silly taking pictures of mats lol. The seats are so much better than the standard 3 seats, a lot more supportive and they look a lot nicer too! :D





(extra blurry pic here  ;D)
« Last Edit: August 10, 2013, 01:45:39 AM by Wash »

Offline Wash

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  • Model: Mazda 3
  • Transmission: Manual
  • Trim: Sport
Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2013, 01:30:56 AM »
Had a bit of bad luck recently and ended up on a kerb facing the wrong way on a dual carriageway  :'(
Wheels were ruined along with a rear trailing arm and a rear hub. Could've been a lot worse though!















Since then I've not done too much to it other than use it. I've had the DPF and the EGR valve deleted which has resulted in a good increase in MPG but more importantly no more DPF hassles!

Future plans include coilovers as I'm still not happy with the ride height, I'd like it to be a fair bit lower yet. I will have the car resprayed sometime soon to get the bodywork back up to scratch because it's got dents and scratches all over it! I've got some wheels too that should be on sometime soon so stay tuned for updates. 8)
« Last Edit: August 10, 2013, 01:38:22 AM by Wash »

Offline gazzunka

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2013, 05:01:52 PM »
God progress. Shame about the alloys, they were nice :(

Offline jigg

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2013, 05:36:49 PM »
Wow shame about the wheels never fort the nissans would of fit

Offline Newbs

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2013, 07:59:17 PM »
nice car  :)

i really like the headlining mod - looks amazing.
i really wish i had some spare cash for some mps seats - they look some much better and look really comfy.

what caused the "incident" facing the wrong way ?
if you can't reply i understand.
rear windows tinted black,carbon fibre pillar trims,stainless steel scuff plates,led interior roof bulbs,led number plate bulbs and piano black handbrake lever handle + leather gaitor.blue alloy tax disc holder,badges painted metallic black,silver painted dash and console,carbon stubby aerial

Offline Wash

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2013, 12:33:01 AM »
Forgot to add but I have had a 4 wheel alignment done too, I'll post up some pics of the alignment settings sometime soon. I have also removed the door mouldings on the side of the car (like you can see in the post about the crash), it gives a much cleaner and smoother look to the car IMO.

nice car  :)

i really like the headlining mod - looks amazing.
i really wish i had some spare cash for some mps seats - they look some much better and look really comfy.

what caused the "incident" facing the wrong way ?
if you can't reply i understand.

Thanks dude.

The headlining mod is great and doesn't cost too much. I spent about £30 on the fabric, I bought extra to wrap other bits too though. One word of advice is not to skimp on the glue and buy some decent stuff, if you use a crap adhesive the headlining will start to sag very quickly (as I learned lol).

Ah no I wasn't doing anything silly, one of my tyres lost air pressure and I had a blow out, ended up losing control of the car and it was a choice between going into the central reservation or the kerb so I chose the kerb. Didn't cost too much to get the car back on the road and it could have been a lot worse, narrowly missed a lamp post and could have even flipped the car when I mounted the kerb!

Wow shame about the wheels never fort the nissans would of fit
Yup 350z wheels do fit on the Mazda 3! You will need to fit narrower stretched tyres and also roll your rear wheel arches otherwise most 350z wheels will foul the arches, especially if you're lowered.

Offline Wash

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2013, 11:03:12 PM »
Just another quick update but I replaced the gear gaiter for a perforated leather one. Nice and easy mod to do and I think it looks a lot better compared to the standard one. I just need to get another gearknob now (not going for the standard gearknob though) because my one is incredibly worn as you might be able to make out in the picture.




On another note I was going to be buying coilovers next week but it will have to hold off for a little while longer now because my DMF is on it's way out (it has started to rattle) and the DMF (and the clutch kit) ain't cheap! :(

Offline Wash

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2013, 04:12:39 PM »
So the TS spec Mazda 3 gets a crappy plastic steering wheel which doesn't feel very nice to hold and my one is well past it's best. It's really badly worn and it's gone really shiny from use...





Managed to source a Mazda 3 MPS steering wheel which is wrapped in leather! It also has red stitching so it matches the red stitching on the seats and the gear gaiter. I'm sure you'll agree it's a huge improvement over the old wheel.



Need to give my airbag a good scrub to make it less shiny now though.


Picture of the entire old wheel for anyone interested:


Offline richij101

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2013, 06:46:34 PM »
if they are cruise control buttons on the MPS steering wheel you can change the break sensor and get the cruise control working. if you look around the are a few tutorials.
No point in doing half a job, it will only get you half way home.

Offline jigg

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2013, 06:48:34 PM »
Yer i was thinking about doing that on my 3

Offline richij101

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2013, 07:00:57 PM »
I have been wanting to do it for ages, its just sourcing the parts which is an issue
No point in doing half a job, it will only get you half way home.

Offline Wash

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2013, 10:15:19 PM »
if they are cruise control buttons on the MPS steering wheel you can change the break sensor and get the cruise control working. if you look around the are a few tutorials.

Yeah they are. I don't think I can get cruise control working on my car though because it's a diesel and it's got a cable instead of a fly-by wire for the throttle pedal.  :-\

Offline richij101

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2013, 11:26:42 PM »
Yeah they are. I don't think I can get cruise control working on my car though because it's a diesel and it's got a cable instead of a fly-by wire for the throttle pedal.  :-\

I have the 57 plate Diesel and am sure its drive by wire, i will have to double check.
No point in doing half a job, it will only get you half way home.

Offline Wash

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #13 on: August 15, 2013, 02:05:25 PM »
Fitted my new wheels! A set of genuine Work Rezax Roar wheels. 8J ET38 front and 9J ET35 rear wrapped in Kumho KU39 205/40/17s all round. Not the best pics showing off the wheels but I'll get some more later this evening.







I also did the clear rear light mod - makes a nice difference giving a much cleaner look.
Before:


After:


Car is absolutely filthy and hasn't been washed for a good month or 2, I'll give it a wash later this evening and take some proper pics.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2013, 02:08:33 PM by Wash »

Offline jigg

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Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2013, 05:00:45 PM »
Ive never been a fan a white wheels but they look nice. and the clear fog is a must it was one of the best mods i have done to my 3 it just ties all the back end together

Mazda 3 Forums UK

Re: Wash's Mazda 3 Project
« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2013, 05:00:45 PM »