Mazda is recalling the Mazda3/Axela in the Japanese and Chinese markets due to transmission problems.
The cars affected are previous generation Mazda3s, built between January 2006 and March 2009. There are 35,000 affected units in Japan and 55,000 in China. The problem arises if the oil cooler hose rubs against the radiator shroud when you’re driving over a bumpy surface. This can result in an oil leak. If that happens, the “Check Engine” light will come on, and the car will not start up, or if you’re on the move at the time, it will go into “Safety Mode”, in which the car can only move along slowly in a single gear.
This is yet another recall for the Japanese manufacturers. We’re noticing a rather odd trend of lots of Japanese recalls lately, despite their notoriety for reliability.