Mazda CX-9 Years To Avoid and The Best Years

Mazda CX-9 Years To Avoid – Welcome to our guide on the Mazda CX-9, where we’ll dive into the journey of this popular SUV since its debut in 2007. With a lineage tracing back to the Mazda MPV minivan, the CX-9 has always been known for its spaciousness, comfort, and agility.

With the addition of a third row, it became a fantastic option for families with its seven-passenger seating capacity.

Over the years, the Mazda CX-9 has undergone significant transformations, evolving into a more refined and luxurious model compared to its earlier versions.

Mazda CX-9 Years To Avoid

As car enthusiasts, we understand the importance of making an informed decision when it comes to purchasing a vehicle.

That’s why, in this article, we will not only highlight the best models to buy but also shed light on the Mazda CX-9 years to avoid.

Our insights are drawn from valuable input provided by users who have experienced different model years of the Mazda CX-9.

We believe that learning from the experiences of others can help us make smarter choices when investing in a car.

So, if you’re eager to know which Mazda CX-9 model years are the cream of the crop and which ones you might want to steer clear of, keep reading.

Our goal is to equip you with the knowledge needed to find the perfect Mazda CX-9 that meets your needs and expectations.

Let’s get started and explore the world of Mazda CX-9 SUVs!

Mazda CX-9 Years To Avoid

When it comes to buying a used SUV, the Mazda CX-9 is a popular choice for many car enthusiasts.

With its second-generation improvements, the CX-9 has earned a reputation for being a reliable and comfortable SUV.

However, not all model years are created equal, and some have faced more issues than others.

In this, we will explore the Mazda CX-9 years to avoid – the ones that have recorded the highest number of problems and severe defects.

Mazda CX-9 Years To Avoid

Armed with this knowledge, you can make an informed decision and find a trustworthy used Mazda CX-9 that meets your needs.

The Problematic Years: 2008, 2010, 2011, and 2012

Based on comprehensive data, we highly recommend steering clear of the 2008, 2010, 2011, and 2012 Mazda CX-9 model years.

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These particular years have shown a higher incidence of problems since the car’s introduction to the market, with severe defects reported in critical components such as brakes, engine, transmission, and water pump.

2008 Mazda CX-9: A Troubled Start

The 2008 Mazda CX-9 model year, unfortunately, encountered several issues affecting crucial systems. The most commonly reported problems involved the engine, brakes, wheels, suspension, airbags, and steering.

Among the worst problems experienced by owners were:

  • Water pump failure at 102,000 miles.
  • A master cylinder brake booster that stopped working at 133,000 miles.
  • Stained, dirty wheels at 31,000 miles.

The high frequency of these issues, coupled with costly repairs, makes the 2008 Mazda CX-9 a year to avoid if you’re seeking a trouble-free SUV ownership experience.

2010 Mazda CX-9: Brake and Engine Woes

The 2010 Mazda CX-9 model year faced its share of complaints, with the most common pain points surrounding the brakes, engine, drivetrain, and suspension. Some of the worst problems reported by owners were:

  • Engine failure at 100,000 miles.
  • Difficult and stiff braking at 99,000 miles.
  • Failed water pump at 104,000 miles.

These recurring problems highlight the 2010 model year’s potential reliability issues, making it another year to be cautious about.

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2011 Mazda CX-9: Brake and Airbag Concerns

The 2011 Mazda CX-9 had its fair share of issues, with many complaints centering on the brakes and airbags.

Notable problems included a bad brake booster at 107,000 miles, brakes that stopped working at 83,000 miles, and hissing brakes at 88,000 miles.

Brake-related problems can significantly impact safety, and thus, this model year should be approached with caution.

2012 Mazda CX-9: A Year with Numerous Complaints

The 2012 Mazda CX-9 model year stands out with the highest number of overall complaints, particularly concerning the brakes, engine, drivetrain, and airbags.

Some of the worst cases experienced by owners included:

  • Transmission problems at 36,000 miles.
  • Hard braking at 61,000 miles.
  • Brake power boost failure at 67,000 miles.

These substantial problems raise concerns about the 2012 model year’s reliability and overall ownership satisfaction.

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Mazda CX-9 Best Years

Understanding the most reliable years can significantly impact your ownership experience.

Owning a dependable SUV not only translates to fewer breakdowns but also ensures your family’s safety on the road.

Mazda CX-9 Best Years

We will delve into the most reliable Mazda CX-9 years and shed light on the factors that contribute to their outstanding performance.

Armed with this knowledge, you can confidently select a Mazda CX-9 that promises years of trouble-free driving and peace of mind.

The Importance of Reliability for Safety and Cost Savings

Reliability in a vehicle goes beyond mere mechanical stability; it directly correlates with safety as well.

The 2020 Mazda CX-9, for instance, boasts a significantly higher reliability rating compared to its competitors in the SUV class. This rating is attributed to a range of robust safety features and stellar scores in crash testing.

By choosing the most reliable year, you’re not only ensuring a dependable ride but also maximizing safety for you and your loved ones.

Furthermore, owning a reliable SUV can lead to significant cost savings.

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This translates to lower maintenance costs and overall savings throughout the vehicle’s lifespan.

The Most Reliable Mazda CX-9 Years

Although some Mazda CX-9 model years may fall short in terms of reliability, the overall reputation of this SUV remains steadfast.

With that said, there are several exceptional year models that stand out for their reliability.

If you’re in the market for a dependable SUV, we highly recommend considering the following Mazda CX-9 model years:

2007 Mazda CX-9: A Solid Start

Mazda CX-9 Best Years

The 2007 Mazda CX-9 model year is a commendable choice for those seeking a reliable SUV.

While it has received a few complaints related to the transmission, drivetrain, suspension, and airbags, the worst problems reported include rear differential failure at 79,000 miles, premature bearing wear at 28,000 miles, and a noisy and leaking transfer case at 99,000 miles.

Despite these issues, the 2007 model year showcases overall reliability.

2009 Mazda CX-9: Few Complaints, Great Performance

The 2009 Mazda CX-9 model year stands out among the earlier releases, with the least number of complaints.

Some of the recorded problems include windows that roll down after being closed at 95,000 miles, a melted light bulb harness at 95,000 miles, and a leaking sunroof during car washes at 25,000 miles.

Additionally, owners have filed a few issues with the airbags and brakes, but overall, the 2009 model exhibits strong reliability.

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2013 Mazda CX-9: Balanced Reliability

The 2013 Mazda CX-9 has seen its share of complaints regarding the engine, brakes, and airbags.

Some of the worst problems reported by owners include water pump failure at 99,000 miles, engine failure at 86,000 miles, and a bad pump brake pedal at 64,000 miles.

Despite these challenges, the 2013 model year strikes a balance in terms of reliability.

2014 Mazda CX-9: Engine and Brake Concerns

Owners of the 2014 Mazda CX-9 have reported problems with the engine, loss of braking, and a failed alternator. While these issues are worth considering, the overall reliability of the 2014 model year remains promising.

2015 Mazda CX-9: Braking Problems Addressed

The 2015 Mazda CX-9 model year experienced more prevalent brake-related problems. While this may be a concern for some buyers, Mazda worked on addressing these issues in later model years.

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2016 Mazda CX-9: Last of Common Complaints

The 2016 model year marks the last year to receive common complaints among many owners. Mazda has continuously improved the CX-9 over time, making the later years even more reliable.

2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 Mazda CX-9: Exemplary Reliability

The 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 Mazda CX-9 model years have demonstrated little to no problems, solidifying their reputations as some of the Most Reliable SUV Of All Time.

In fact, some of these models received the prestigious Top Safety Pick Award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Mazda CX-9 Problems

The Mazda CX-9 has gained popularity among SUV enthusiasts for its impressive performance and above-average reliability.

Mazda CX-9 Problems

With a remarkable score of 4.0 out of 5.0 in reliability, the CX-9 ranked 1st out of 14 full-size SUVs, according to RepairPal.

However, like any vehicle, the CX-9 is not without its share of common mechanical problems.

In this section, we will explore some of the frequent issues faced by CX-9 owners, including water pump failure, engine problems, transmission issues, and brake power boost unit failure.

Understanding these challenges will help you stay informed and take proactive measures to ensure a smooth and trouble-free ride.

1. Water Pump Failure: A Common Culprit

One of the most common problems reported by Mazda CX-9 owners is water pump failure. highlights this issue as the number one problem faced by CX-9 owners, mainly attributed to collateral damage.

When the water pump fails, coolant can leak into the engine oil, leading to potential engine failure.

This problem is particularly prominent in certain model years and can be costly to repair. Regular maintenance and early detection of water pump issues can prevent more severe damage to your CX-9’s engine.

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2. Engine Failure: An Unfortunate Consequence

The 2010 Mazda CX-9 experienced an unfortunate trend where several owners reported engine failure around 103,350 miles. This issue is closely connected to the faulty water pump failure mentioned earlier.

When the engine is affected, the typical remedy is a complete engine replacement, which can incur significant costs, often up to $5,000.

Regular check-ups and addressing any signs of engine trouble promptly can help mitigate the risk of engine failure.

3. Transmission Woes: Hard Shifts and Slips

The Mazda CX-9 has been known to encounter transmission problems, including hard shifts, jerking, hesitations, and other anomalies.

While some instances may be software-related and can be resolved with updates, experts suspect that certain cases may be due to a damaged valve body or faulty shift solenoids.

If you experience any transmission-related issues, it’s crucial to have them diagnosed and fixed by a reputable mechanic to ensure smooth gear transitions and optimal driving performance.

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4. Brake Power Boost Unit Failure: A Safety Concern

Another notable problem that Mazda CX-9 owners should be vigilant about is the faulty brake power boost unit.

While it doesn’t result in a complete brake failure, it does increase braking distance, posing a safety risk. In emergency situations, having a responsive braking system is crucial to avoid accidents.

If you notice any issues with your CX-9’s braking performance, it’s essential to have it inspected and repaired promptly to ensure optimal safety on the road.

Remember that proper care and attention to these common issues will significantly contribute to the longevity and performance of your CX-9, allowing you to enjoy all the benefits this remarkable SUV has to offer.

Is a Mazda CX-9 reliable?

Yes, the Mazda CX-9 is considered to be one of the most reliable midsize SUVs, especially in its second-generation models. The CX-9 has proven to be dependable, making it a worthwhile choice for SUV enthusiasts in 2023.

How many miles does a Mazda CX-9 last?

Mazda estimates that the CX-9 can last upwards of 250,000 to 300,000 miles, particularly for the newer second-generation models. Older models can still be expected to reach a respectable mileage of around 200,000 to 250,000 miles.

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Is the Mazda CX-9 good in the snow?

Yes, the Mazda CX-9 performs remarkably well in snowy conditions, thanks to its advanced traction control systems and features. The vehicle utilizes these systems to provide optimal traction and stability on snow and icy roads, making it a reliable choice for winter driving.

What is the successor to the Mazda CX-9?

The 2023 model year marks the end of the Mazda CX-9’s three-row crossover era. However, Mazda is replacing it with the more upscale CX-90, which is set to take its place in the lineup.

The CX-90 is expected to offer a more luxurious and refined driving experience while still carrying on the Mazda legacy of reliability and performance.


While the Mazda CX-9 is generally regarded as a reliable midsize SUV, it is essential to be aware of potential issues and common problems that certain model years may have faced.

The second-generation CX-9, in particular, stands out as one of the most dependable options in the lineup, offering excellent reliability and performance.

Specifically, 2008, 2010, 2011, and 2012 Mazda CX-9 years should be avoided due to reported issues related to water pump failure, engine problems, transmission woes, and brake power boost unit failure.

However, it’s not all bad news.

Mazda has continually improved the CX-9 over the years, and there are several outstanding model years worth considering.

2007, 2009, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 Mazda CX-9 years have demonstrated strong reliability and offer a smoother ownership experience.

In making your decision, it is always best to do thorough research, consider your budget, and prioritize your preferences when selecting the right Mazda CX-9 model year for you.

Keeping in mind the insights provided in this guide will undoubtedly help you make an informed choice and find a Mazda CX-9 that suits your needs and driving expectations.

Remember, knowledge is power, and understanding the common problems and the most reliable Mazda CX-9 years will ensure that you enjoy a trouble-free and enjoyable journey with your chosen SUV.

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