2022 Mazda 3 Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Airbag & Seatbelt Pretensioner issues are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

well for more than a decade. Starting out with sales of well over 97,000, it tipped 120,000 in 2007 and more than 134,000 in 2012. But since 2019, sales have been falling.

Mazda’s explanation was that they increased prices too much. Reports from 2019 indicate that they believed customers would see the added value that the price increases offered. But it hasn’t improved, and sales continue to drop.

By mid-2022, only 14,855 of the 2022 model have been sold.

Another explanation is that consumers no longer go for the once popular hatchback designs, although the 2022 model is also available as a sedan. Nevertheless, it doesn’t explain, or even relate to, the complaints 2022 Mazda3 owners are lodging with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Click on other model year to view more problems:  2019   2020   2021   2023   

Most Common Problems

The only problem 2022 Mazda Mazda3 drivers have bothered to complain about is the airbags. And there are a lot of very unhappy consumers.

There are two major issues. One involves an airbag/seatbelt pretensioner malfunction. The other relates to a notification that reads, “Airbag Malfunction. Have the vehicle inspected.”

We checked the complaints about the 2021 Mazda3 and discovered that airbag malfunctions were an issue then too.

2022 Mazda 3 Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Air Bags
Air Bags:srs Malfunction Warning Lamp/light
Electrical System
Power Train
Seat Belts
Unknown Or Other

Air Bag Problems

By mid-year, there had been six complaints to the NHTSA about the 2022 Mazda3. Alarmingly, all have been about the vehicle’s airbags. One of the first simply says: “Airbag warning light went on. Found Code B1126:13 Driver Side Airbag deployment. Replaced (the) driver side airbag under warranty.”

Others are more specific, stating the two related malfunctions mentioned above. They are probably closely related, if not the same.

The 2022 Mazda3 was released in the U.S. early in 2022.

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Airbag/Seatbelt Pretensioner Malfunction

The first complaint to the NHTSA was in April 2022 from a new owner who purchased the car with 17 miles on the clock.

“After 500 miles on the odometer, (I) began receiving multiple daily warnings through the MyMazda app indicating airbag/seat belt pretensioner malfunction. Subsequently (I) noticed the same warning lit up on the dash while driving for approximately 10 seconds and then (the) light went out.”

This is when the owner discovered a technical service bulletin dated 317/2022 no: 08-001/22 that indicated this as a known problem for Mazda3 vehicles between 2019 and 2022. The bulletin shows a design flaw in the path layout for the wire harness connecting to the side airbag module in the seat back. It recommends modifying the plastic module cover by removing several inches of plastic, several inches of foam padding, and pinning a section of the wire harness to the seat frame with a plastic grommet.

“This is a clear safety hazard concern that should have been addressed before I was allowed to drive the vehicle away from the dealership. Mazda’s position is not to address the issue until they receive a customer complaint. If I had been in an accident I may have been severely injured or killed because of this malfunction.”

A frustrated sedan owner complained about the same issue stating: “I have taken my vehicle to my Mazda dealership a total of 7 times for this same issue ‘Airbag/seatbelt pre tensioner’ and yet to have my car fixed. Every time I take my car into the dealership service they claim the issue has been fixed and it has not been till this day.”

“This issue on the Mazda 3 sedan needs to be investigated as this is a huge safety issue for customers.”

Airbag Malfunction

The “Airbag Malfunction: Have the vehicle inspected” is horribly common. Furthermore, it seems that there is no resolution.

The most recent complaint states that he got the notification after owning the car for two months. The dealer “determined that the airbag was not receiving enough power, which triggered the warning. They replaced the part, and now two months later, I have received the same notification. This problem is persistent, and I have seen in forums that many are having to deal with this issue. Mazda needs to recall the cars to replace the parts with ones that will not cause this type of inconvenience. After all, airbags are a huge part of safety.”

Another owner got the notification when the new car had only about 20 miles on the clock.

“Mazda has a technical service bulletin for this problem (Bulletin no:08-001/22) and states the issue is due to ‘Driver-side air bag module circuit: open circuit or resistance high’. This issue also occurs on the passenger-side airbag. It is a possibility that I could have been in an accident and the side airbag would not function. Or even perhaps the airbag may have had an electrical error and engaged itself while I could have been driving. My local dealership has verified the issue, however, they still have not been able to correct the issue after 8 weeks.”

This owner filed a complaint after driving a loaner vehicle for seven weeks. The reasons:

  1. This issue is so common
  2. It pertains to something crucially important to safety
  3. This is occurring almost immediately after purchase
  4. Mazda does not seem to be able to readily and quickly fix the issue

What to do if your 2022 Mazda3 is a lemon? Your Lemon Rights

Recurring problems with any vehicle may indicate that it is a lemon. You may not have experienced airbag issues with your 2022 Mazda3, but you may have other problems.

If you believe you have a lemon on your hands, for whatever reason, a legal firm like Lemberg Law can negotiate a settlement with the manufacturer on your behalf. We have negotiated many settlement deals for our clients from trade-ins to buy-backs.

If you need help contact our Helpline and we will assess your problem. The law says Mazda must pay the legal fees of lemon law cases, so you’ve got nothing to lose.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones

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