Sister Chassis

Turning Wrenches

After years of working under the hood of my own Mazda 3, I learned a lot about the engine and frame of the vehicle.  Among that knowledge, is the awareness that the Mazda 3, Ford Focus, Volvo C30, and many more share the same chassis and many other parts.  For those who prefer to work on their own car, when possible – it pays to be resourceful.

The Ford C1 Platform

I became aware of the commonality of these manufacturers when I found out my passenger side motor mount in my ’04 Mazda 3 had blown out.  If you have a Mazda 3 or Ford Focus be aware that this is a problem – you will notice substantial torque loss.2011-11-16_234249_mount

This was apparently a common issue with these two cars (and potentially others I’m unaware of), a faulty design in the number three motor mount bracket.  There are a lot of interchangeable parts in these cars (search online for Ford C1 platform).  For example, while looking into engine swap information about my inevitable project, I had learned that it is possible to put a Ford 2.3 engine in my MZ3 – but not all of the electronic components are compatible with one another – so I decided against the hassle.

Preference for Familiarity

It is not accident that I had/have the Mazda, and having learned about the C1 platform – I subsequently purchased my Volvo.  Though, I haven’t taken the C30 apart to the extent that I have with the 3; I can already see the similarities in less than a year of owning it.

Shared love for the Style

I loved the lines and stance of a C30 from the first time I saw one, and sure, that is largely the reason behind choosing that car.  I imagine a lot of us choose our vehicles based on styling.  I share the same feelings about the Mazda 3, and though the new design is wicked – the first generation is still my favorite.  I still get hyped when I see and ’07 MazdaSpeed 3; a souped up version of the first iteration 3, with a turbocharged 2.3L and 6 speed manual transmission.

I also really enjoy the lines on a Ford Focus, as well – particularly the RS – you can spot one from a mile away.  Where-as I still occasionally get faked out on Mazda 3’s, “oh oh!…oh, it’s just a sedan.” – the Focus, and C30 are unmistakable.  I could see myself purchasing a Focus in the future.  I stumbled upon a herd of them a couple of months back, and couldn’t resist stopping.

I’m in no hurry to own something other than the Volvo.  I intend to keep it ready to ride, for years to come.  So long as the resources of the internet, and car community remain in tact, I will keep turning my own wrenches.  Keep that engine humming.

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