IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
8/26/22 12:51 p.m.

Pretty stoked for this car.

She'll be joining our E90 M3 6MT slicktop, which until now was our only car:

 

Living in a city, we never needed more than one car. The M3 did everything:  school runs to track days, road trips and weekend fun drives, all weather including snow and salt.

Only a matter of time before kids changed the calculus. The M3 sedan was great for the first few years, but it's coming time for something more tailor-made for everyday driving. Since I insist on manual transmissions, and we wanted 3 rows, the 5 was really the only option. Thankfully it's a good vehicle.

Even looking nationwide, there were so few gen-2 Mazda5 6MTs for sale that I basically had to pick rust, accidents, or miles. I chose miles. This car came to me with over 157k, but apparently most of that was in central Texas. Hope that was the right call.

Over the next month or so, the 5 will be getting:

- Koni Special Active dampers
- Kenwood DMX907S for wireless CarPlay
- Volvo brake pads
- All three powertrain mounts
- LED headlight bulbs
- Spark plugs
- All operating fluids

Also a few fixes like headlight housing restoration, rear window motors, and a new antenna.

Leather-wrapped steering wheel coming at some point. Fluid Film or similar underbody coating in winter. Lighter wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport AS4 tires coming in spring. The stock wheels will become the winter set.

Overall, the plan is to keep the car stock or OE+.

Plenty of cosmetic blemishes but I’m likely to let most of those be. I was never one to spend time or effort making sure my car was pretty.

Hope you all will indulge some noob questions, plus at least one potentially unusual one for this platform. I’ve searched a lot of this stuff but maybe I haven’t looked hard enough. Apologies in advance if I’ve missed anything obvious.

  1. What’s a good service manual just to have as a reference? Hard to find anything specific to the gen-2 US cars. I’ve found some pretty comprehensive materials for the 1.8 and 2.0 engine versions, and of course some gen-1 stuff, but nothing for gen-2 2.5.
  2. Has anyone made a list of parts shared with Volvos? I know of a few (strut/shock mounts, front struts, brake pads, etc.) and am building my own list, but I have to imagine someone has compiled one somewhere.
  3. If clutch pedal effort is higher than normal, does that suggest a very new or very old clutch? Or something else like a worn slave cylinder? I’m not sure if clutch pedal effort is higher than normal on this car, but it’s higher than in my M3, so I’m weighing potential preemptive fixes.
  4. Is there any chassis bracing for this car that’s worthwhile and available in the US? I see packages from Hardrace, Ultra Racing, etc., but a lot of it looks like it does nothing, and it’s all either NLA, RHD-specific, or shipped from potentially sketchy vendors.

If you've read this far, thanks!  Hope to have some good updates soon!

chandler
chandler UltimaDork
8/26/22 1:38 p.m.

1. I never found a good service manual

 

2. The only crossover item I had good luck with was the e-focus trans mount. The factory one lasted 50k or so and at 90k on the second one I switched and never had to replace it. 
 

3. I never noticed my pedal getting shorter, I did 209k on it before doing clutch and a Jy trans since something internal broke then.


4. I only did the RSB from James Barone Racing, nothing else really was needed.

 

Floating Doc (Forum Supporter)
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
8/26/22 1:43 p.m.

We've had our 2014 Five for about 3 years now. This is the first I've been aware of a Volvo connection. Tell me more.

BlueInGreen - Jon
BlueInGreen - Jon UltraDork
8/26/22 1:48 p.m.

Very nice.

Might be a bit lacking in the power department compared to the M3. :P

With our crappy roads the best thing I did was slightly taller tires on 16" wheels, down from 17"

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
8/26/22 1:49 p.m.
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) said:

We've had our 2014 Five for about 3 years now. This is the first I've been aware of a Volvo connection. Tell me more.

This car shares several parts with Volvo C30s, S40s, and others.  What I know so far is

-  Front struts
-  Rear shock mounts
-  Front & rear brake pads

Some suspension stuff as well, IIRC – though with some annoying differences, like it'll be the same LCA but with a different ball joint or something.

I'm sure someone, somewhere, has a list...

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
8/26/22 1:52 p.m.
BlueInGreen - Jon said:

Very nice.

Might be a bit lacking in the power department compared to the M3. :P

With our crappy roads the best thing I did was slightly taller tires on 16" wheels, down from 17"

Thankfully, the 5's throttle seems to be mapped to go WOT even with partial input, so it feels reasonable when you're driving mildly! laugh

Also thankfully, mine came to me on 16" wheels.  Zero plans to change that, largely for the reason you alluded to.

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
8/26/22 2:02 p.m.
chandler said:

1. I never found a good service manual

That sucks.  What do you do for torque specs etc.?

jwagner (Forum Supporter)
jwagner (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
8/26/22 2:42 p.m.

The 5 is based on the 3, no?  I thought they shared engines and a fair number of chassis components. 

chandler
chandler UltimaDork
8/26/22 3:53 p.m.
IamFODI said:
chandler said:

1. I never found a good service manual

That sucks.  What do you do for torque specs etc.?

Mostly ask my buddy who runs the service department at Mazda.... or pull the same spec for the MZ3. I sold mine in 2020, I put 209k on it in the first 7 years I had it and 500 in the last 2 so it wandered away.

Pushrod
Pushrod Reader
8/26/22 4:23 p.m.

In reply to chandler :

Great lookin' car, Chandler.

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
8/26/22 4:41 p.m.
chandler said:
IamFODI said:
chandler said:

1. I never found a good service manual

That sucks.  What do you do for torque specs etc.?

Mostly ask my buddy who runs the service department at Mazda.... or pull the same spec for the MZ3. I sold mine in 2020, I put 209k on it in the first 7 years I had it and 500 in the last 2 so it wandered away.

Ha, nice.

chandler
chandler UltimaDork
8/26/22 4:59 p.m.
Pushrod said:

In reply to chandler :

Great lookin' car, Chandler.

Thank you, tried a few looks

CyberEric
CyberEric Dork
8/26/22 5:20 p.m.

Second gen 5 with a MT?! Those are raaaaaaaaare. I love these. Seems like a perfect fit next to an M3.

Happy motoring!

paul_s0
paul_s0 Reader
8/26/22 5:34 p.m.

Good choice, I was looking here but the 5s only came with a slushbox in Peru, coupled with the 2.0, and most of them were used as taxis..

If you're changing motor mounts, for the upper ones I'd only recommend OE Mazda, or if you want an increase in NVH one of the aftermarket "uprated" ones.   I tried various aftermarket standard mounts and they were all garbage.  As is mentioned above, the E-Focus lower mount gives an increase in rigidity with no discernable negatives (but you need to change the horizontal bolt for the Ford item).

With those miles I'd strongly recommend checking the forward bush in the rear trailing arms..

 

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
8/30/22 1:14 p.m.

Where do you guys buy your genuine Mazda parts? My previous favorite vendor (from years ago) seems way less responsive than when I last bought from them, and I'd really prefer to shop elsewhere.
 

paul_s0
paul_s0 Reader
8/31/22 12:45 p.m.

As I'm in Peru, getting them locally is a no go - I import everything.  For OEM stuff I get it from the Middle East, https://partsouq.com/ .

 

I've used them several times for OEM bits, no problems, sometimes a bit of a delay despatching (1-5 days depending), but they do typically advise which parts have a delay.  Other than that no issues, prices are good, and delivery (once it's been despatched) has been quick.

dannyp84
dannyp84 Reader
8/31/22 2:34 p.m.
chandler said:

1. I never found a good service manual

 

2. The only crossover item I had good luck with was the e-focus trans mount. The factory one lasted 50k or so and at 90k on the second one I switched and never had to replace it. 
 

3. I never noticed my pedal getting shorter, I did 209k on it before doing clutch and a Jy trans since something internal broke then.


4. I only did the RSB from James Barone Racing, nothing else really was needed.

3 piece wheels make everything better..

 

barefootcyborg5000
barefootcyborg5000 PowerDork
8/31/22 2:44 p.m.

Super jelly on that trans. My 13 is auto, and for 20k miles (so far!) it's been great. We're taking it to Disney next weekend and I'm not worried at all about hauling 5 people and our stuff, getting 25mpg flawlessly, and being just generally good. 
In fact, if I were to come into money, I'd buy my wife a bigger van (HV Sienna, likely) and I'd take over the 5. No hesitation  

As for the Volvo stuff, it's a platform shared with many cars including Mazda 3 (also focus) and a few others. The 2.5 is had in a bunch of ford and Mazda offerings.


Javelin is our reigning authority on the 5. I'm sure he'll be around shortly. 

eastsideTim
eastsideTim UltimaDork
8/31/22 4:42 p.m.

For service info, I use a mix of the internet and a 2004-2011 Mazda3 Haynes guide.  It's useful for torque/fluid specs, and at least to give me a general idea of how to disassemble/reassemble something.  If I need more detail, I tend to go to youtube, and watch a video or two.

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
9/5/22 5:57 a.m.

So a member of our extended family has a 2010 5MT.  We compared clutch pedal feel between the two cars.  Ours is significantly heavier and engages much closer to the floor.  Anyone think we should start feeling out clutch replacement?

wae
wae PowerDork
9/5/22 8:02 a.m.

In reply to IamFODI :

That's a job that I'm going to have to do on our 2013 relatively soon.  Ours will slip when giving it a lot of throttle at relativity low RPMs.  Not sure that the clutch pedal feels any different, but it would have been gradual so we wouldn't have noticed.

Javelin
Javelin GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/5/22 9:30 a.m.

In reply to IamFODI :

You did well! I really like the 2.5/MT6 combo. The chassis is literally identical to a Mazda3 with a higher spring rate in the rear. I went full stupid with my second one including coilovers and huge wheels that required rolling the fenders.

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
9/5/22 9:45 a.m.
wae said:

In reply to IamFODI :

That's a job that I'm going to have to do on our 2013 relatively soon.  Ours will slip when giving it a lot of throttle at relativity low RPMs.  Not sure that the clutch pedal feels any different, but it would have been gradual so we wouldn't have noticed.

Thanks.  Maybe I'll just wait until it starts slipping.

IamFODI
IamFODI New Reader
9/5/22 9:57 a.m.

Speaking of issues:

The car's back on the ground with Koni Special Actives.  Kept the springs, which I'm pretty sure are stock. New strut mounts & shock mounts. New bump stops in the rear because the originals were disintegrating. Front bump stops seemed okay so I kept them (though my opinion of what seems okay might not be worth much).

The ride and handling are excellent for this kind of car, with one exception: it kind of crashes a bit over big bumps. It's not hideously unpleasant; just harder than it feels like it should be. Very out-of-character vs. the rest of the ride quality. A member of our extended family has a 2010 5 on Bilstein B4s and said ours feels crashier on big bumps.

Front LCA bushings seemed okay but could be original for all I know. Same with the ARB bushings. The tires are no-name specials that I plan to replace soon. Any chance any of those could be contributing to the problem? Or is this crashiness a known characteristic of Koni Special Actives?

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/5/22 9:58 a.m.
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) said:

We've had our 2014 Five for about 3 years now. This is the first I've been aware of a Volvo connection. Tell me more.

Some Volvos were built on the same chassis, I forget if Ford, Mazda, or Volvo penned the chassis design.  They had the same nagging problems that Mazdas on the chassis had except for shell rust.  I don't think there are are beneficial swap items to be had.

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