Chris' Mazda 6 Gen 3 Sport

It was time for the Gen 2 diesel to go :frowning: I always wanted a Gen 3 but at the time the prices were alot more than I could afford so I settled for a Gen 2 2.2D Takuya. The car was faultess in the 18 months of ownership, despite other owners having problems with DPF,injector seals,timing chain stretch etc I must have had one of the good ones

With my limited daily mileage it was best to sell now before I caused any serious damage. With the car sold it was time to find a Gen 3 petrol, then this appeared for sale in Tamworth (a nice 360 mile round trip away)

2013 Sport (non Sat Nav model) in Soul Red
6spd Manual
2.0 Petrol
38k miles
2 Previous Owners
Full Mazda history

It has the usual Sport extras

Heated Leather Seats
Front and Rear Parking Sensors
Rear Reverse Camera
19" Alloys
Xenon Headlights

Couldn’t resist a night photoshoot, the colour really pops

Last night we took a spontaneous road trip to collect some wheels, I can’t help myself lol

The Advan AD08Rs have been sold, I dont think this 160hp family car needs all that extra grip haha

I spent the day with the other half taking a drive around local back roads looking for a nice scenic road to take some Autumn photos. Tried a different editing style to match the theme with a darker,warmer tone.


From factory Mazda did a really great job with the design work on the Gen 3, but unfortunately I’m not a huge lover of chrome. The original plan was to vinyl wrap the exterior chrome trims, then I was going to use a gloss Plastidip but that isn’t permenant enough. I then came across a can of Graffiti paint I had used on a previous car (I painted a '92 MX5 with the stuff and surprisingly it came out pretty good). So I headed over to their website to discover they no longer sell individual cans :frowning:

A quick google search and I came across Graff-City who supply a Gloss, fast drying and durable finish paint, happy days! The paint arrived and I got the trims removed and prepped. The trims received only 2 coats of paint, the coverage is incredible! The ‘fast drying’ part is good enough for applying another coat, but the small print on the cans says it needs 24-48hrs to cure fully. Despite the extended drying time the finish is great and covered the trims very well, this paint could come in handy for other things in the future?

Another job to do while the front bumper was in pieces was to fit a debadged grille. Originally I was going to make my own, but all the photos I had come across it didn’t look great all in honesty. AutoExe do a single bar grille with the factory emblem, but shipping from Japan + import charges would have made it quite expensive (especially as I found a carbon fibre version too). In the end I went for the MV-Tuning grille, but opted for their insert only and for me to use my original base. They can supply a grille base too but that added another £130 to the price, besides I like messing around with stuff and felt more than confident in doing it.

I browsed eBay for a used grille, I managed to pick up a brand new genuine item for £50 posted. That arrived before the insert so I had some time to cut it and prep it ready. The new insert was extremely easy to fit, included are 3 covers for the main bars/slats which can be painted/colour coded. I decided against it as the plastic matches the lower grille in the bumper and looks more OEM

Another package from eBay was some yellow light tint film to do the front fog lamps. I did this to my Gen 2 and love the look. It made sense to do this while the bumper was off.

Another change was fitting some 13x6.5 import size plates. The OEM plate surround left 2x 6.5mm holes, I used some ‘fir tree trim clips’ to plug the holes.

The rear end received the same treatment, the chrome trim was painted in the same paint and the number plate swapped for an import one. I also removed the MAZDA6 and Skyactiv badges and gave the Mazda emblem a coat of gloss black paint too. The garage couldn’t have been bothered to remove the original dealer plates (that were stuck on with sticky pads) so they decided to drill through their plate and the current one making two new holes in the bootlid. I removed both in a matter of minutes, they could have used the original holes Mazda provided, I wouldn’t be left with two ugly plugs but nevermind!

The side window chrome trims will probably have to be vinyl wrapped because I can’t find anywhere inside to be able to paint them, especially if I have to leave it 48hrs to dry. This will probably come later on unless circumstances change.

1 Like

Next on the to-do list was to lower the car. Coilovers aren’t cheap for these so I went with the next best thing, lowering springs. I went for P.I lowering springs 30mm/30mm as they had some good feedback from other owners.

It was a great time to get the new wheels swapped over too. I went with Mazda Rx8 R3 alloys, I’ve always liked the design and after finding a photo of a red Gen 3 in Japan with them fitted, the idea was sold. Certainly not the easiest OEM wheel to source especially at a reasonable price. They could do with a refurb at some point, but for now they’re presentable enough not to worry a great deal. I quite like the dark grey so will probably go with something similar.

Its small details like painting the calipers that can improve the overall look of a car. With the new wheels on this was certainly something that needed to be done, but which colour? The obvious choice was red,black or silver, but I decided to go with yellow. At first it didn’t seem like a good idea, but I think it really suits it :slight_smile: The yellow Pistonheads smiley on the bootlid now ties in :wink:

Even though I google’d the wheel specs, for some reason I thought they were going to be wider (width or offset). It wasn’t until they were mounted I noticed how lost the rear wheels were in the arches. A company in the UK called FreakyParts specialise in hubcentric spacers (I knew of Stewart and his company from when I had the MX5). A few days later a pair of 17mm hubcentric spacers were with me after some measuring. Stewart advised that the original studs may have to be trimmed if the back of the spokes weren’t hollow. The R3 wheels are slightly hollow but not enough to clear the pertruding studs, so it was time to play with the angle grinder.

The MV Tuning grille is definately one of the best things you can buy for a Gen 3

Something I’d like to do at some point is fit some 4" exhaust tips. The originals are welded to the pipework so it’s more involved. I have received a quote from a local fabrication company so it’s something to bare in mind for the future.