Hi all.

New to the forums. Wanted to ask for some advice regarding my 2017 Mazda CX-3 AWD's battery. It has served me well, but I believe its battery may need changing soon. I got it August 2017, so it is due. Been doing some reading across different forums about changing the battery of the car.

When I first got this, Mazda Alabang told me they've partnered up with Motolite to produce a special battery for its vehicles. I for one immediately call this BS marketing so I'll be forced to get a battery from them. Mazda customer care was quick to respond to my email earlier this morning. They said:

Thank you for your reaching out and we hope you are well.

The battery for your CX3 AWD is a special battery called Enhanced Flooded Battery (EFB) and can only be purchased thru authorized dealers.
I refuse to believe this, but if there is a genuine reason for this, I want to hear it. Also, will this cost an arm and a leg? I know standard batteries hover around 5k - 7K.

I have a few questions:

1. If I go for other brands of batteries (ex. Panasonic, Bosch, Optima), what do I stand to lose? Just the i-Stop system from engaging, right? What other brands should I look at (only ones that are locally available please)
2. Any other Mazda owner (who has an i-Stop system in their car) willing to share their experience?
3. I've read online about Q85 batteries and AGM batteries. Are these the types of batteries that will work with the i-Stop system?

Again, I really don't mind losing i-Stop functionality. I'm more concerned about the price-performance ratio and simple logic lol. I don't mind spending 6K or 7K every 2 years on the dot rather than spend 20K for a special battery that will need changing every 2 years and X months.

Thanks very much!