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As many 124 Spider owners (as well as Mazda MX-5 owners) have later realized, many dealers* seem to be skipping just about everything on their pre-delivery checklists, other than removing the obvious plastic protection wrap from the seats and body.
Be aware of the following items that are supposed to be addressed during dealer pre-delivery…
Wheels are shipped to the Mazda factory with the tires already installed and inflated to the maximum rated pressure, which is 51 psi, so that:
- the beads will seat properly into the double hump profile of the rim, to minimize the chance of bead seat dislodgement, even when the inflation pressure is lower than the operating pressure
- tire disfigurement (flat spots) is minimized during the long boat ride overseas, while strapped to the deck of the ship and while parked in storage lots for long durations
- any faults in the rim castings, tires and/or tire valves might be revealed, should the pressure not be retained during the build process
The dealer is supposed to deflate the pressure to around 29 psi as part of their pre-delivery tasks, and customers going for test rides hopefully aren’t driving vehicles that still have 51 psi in the tires, as this will have a very negative effect on the expected ride quality.
If you have a tire pressure gauge, it is easy to deal with over-inflated tires as many gauges have a small nub built-in designed to depress the valve stem and allow excess air to escape.
Be advised though, that 29 psi might not be sufficient for highway driving, if cargo and occupants weigh close to (or more than) 340 pounds, which is the stated weight limit on the B-pillar tire placard. Wish this had been made clearer somehow, before we took all of those long weekend trips. Read this article for details.
And if they haven’t deflated the tires, then they also didn’t reset the TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System), so you can expect that (loud) alarm to sound within a couple hundred miles. Here’s the procedure for doing that, after you’ve verified that the (cold) tire pressure is set to the B-pillar placard pressure (29 psi) on all four tires (note that this only applies to the Classica & Lusso; the Abarth should reset itself).
Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS):
Classica & Lusso uses ABS algorithms; no actual wheel sensors
Reset TPMS system:
Hold TPMS button until beep, and lamp has flashed twice
If your vehicle came with the Navigation option, the dealer should have installed the SD card, but most buyers are finding the packaging in the either the armrest cubby, or the cubby between the seats in the rear bulkhead (that’s our “glove box”) after they arrive home, wondering why their Infotainment system informed them that “your 124 Spider is not equipped with Navigation”. The 3″ x 5″ ziplock bag containing the SD card in yet another smaller ziplock bag, will be labelled “NAVTEQ MAPS” and may also have the Mopar Part # 68366118AA label attached. You’ll find instructions on how to install the SD card here.