The new Mazda 3 – tips for a new owner

4 years ago I took possession of a new Ford Focus and the post I wrote about it became one of the most popular on this site, covering various tips for any owner. Now, the Ford has gone and, in its place, the new, 2017 model of the Mazda 3. So, let’s do the same…


These are my initial tips but except to see more added in future so don’t forget to re-visit regularly!

Get the Mazda Toolbox

Mazda Toolbox is an application that enables you to see all available updates, download the necessary files from the internet and upload updates and new content to your infotainment system. It can also be used to create and restore backups.

Not only that but if you have a Nav model you can use this to get 3 years of free map updates. To buy additional services, visit here.

Download the Mazda Toolbox for Windows and Mac.

Read the Manuals

The good thing about getting the manuals online is that it allows you to read through them at a place and time that’s more convenient to you. And, more importantly, it can include some rather helpful videos!

Product Features & Manuals (inc. videos)

Use “My Mazda”

My Mazda is a personalised site and app for Mazda owners. It allows you to keep all important Mazda ownership documents, manuals, service history and schedule, tutorials and warranty information in one place.

The app is available for iOS and Android or you can access it via the web.

Updating the Music Database

The MZD Connect “infotainment” system includes a music database. Updating this is easy and step-by-step instructions can be found on the Mazda site.

Update Gracenote Media Database

Update your MZD Connect Software

The software that powers your in-car systems is not user updatable and you’re dependant on your Mazda dealer to perform any updates.

Display Nav Directions on the HUD (Active Driving Display)

Right now, this option is a little, shall we say, “buggy”. If you have the Nav option then directions should appear in the HUD, as you drive. However, it doesn’t.

To fix this…

  1. On MZD Connect, head into Settings.
  2. Select the ‘AD-Disp’ tab.
  3. Select ‘Display Information.
  4. Select ‘Navigation’.
  5. Select ‘Off’.
  6. Now change this back to ‘Lane Guidance & Turn-by-Turn’.

This may switch off again – in which case, perform the above process again to restore it. I’m sure Mazda, in a future software release, will fix this..

Buy Accessories

When getting a new car I’d recommend the scuff plates that fit on the front and rear door sills. They’re not particularly cheap but can be fitted easily yourself.

I would additionally recommend getting some kind of protector for the key-fobs which can be quite easily marked. You can buy some leather ones from Amazon but they cover some of the additional buttons. Instead, there is an excellent silicon cover available, which includes all of the buttons.


If you liked this, you should try The Big Tech Question, which includes articles written by myself.

The Big Tech Question delivers straight answers to the biggest questions in tech. And some questions nobody really wanted the answers to…

Talk to me!