Here’s a recall we had to read twice before believing. Mazda is bringing in 25,003 Mazda 3s that just rolled off the assembly line, because the wheels may fall off while driving. All the Mazda 3s are 2019 model year cars, so it’s only the totally new generation Mazda 3 under the gun here.
Thankfully, Mazda says there are no cases of this occurring to owners, and therefore no injuries or deaths related to the issue. As for the cause of the wheel detachment? Mazda put out a statement explaining the issue at hand.
“A manufacturing process error may result in a gap between the wheel hub bolt and hub flange during assembly. This gap causes loosening of the lug nuts though they were initially tightened to the correct specification at the plant. A rattling noise occurs prior to a wheel detachment from the vehicle,” Mazda says.
It’s heartening to see Mazda did in fact tighten the lugs at the factory, but still extremely troubling to see that they can loosen all on their own. Our advice? Walk on out to your shiny, new Mazda 3 and torque those lugs to spec. If you don’t have a torque wrench, then just use the wrench that came with the car to make sure they’re not loose.
Those that have a new Mazda 3 should be on the lookout for a recall notice in the mail. You’ll then be able to take the car to the dealer for Mazda to fix the problem. Until then, just keep an eye on your lugs. A wheel flying off while driving at speed is always a recipe for disaster, and we sure do enjoy driving the new Mazda 3 at speed.