Mazda5 is surprisingly spacious and easy to configure, while providing up to 44.4 cubic feet of cargo space with the 50/50-split 3rd-row seatbacks folded down. Or you can fold both the 2nd and 3rd row seats, which gives you a flat cargo floor that is over 5 feet in length. You can choose whether you wish to carry six passengers or a mountain of boxes or other stuff. The extra-wide, easy sliding, rear door and ultra-light rear liftgate makes loading and unloading so very easy.
Let me share how this storage thing works. There is a second row foldout tray center-mounted for superb utility usage. It easily lifts out and displays cup holders big enough for two Big Gulps. There is a storage bin underneath the tray that is perfect for storing small items. The tray can be stored underneath the seat cushion. There is also a covered, under-floor storage compartment, allowing you to store items underneath the cargo area. This means you can hide items out of sight while contained.
Mazda5 has three rows, seats six, and has a generous 97.7 cubic feet of passenger space. The center and rear rows feature elevated “theatre style” seating for a better view. Plus, both seats in the second row are reclining captain chairs with inboard and outboard arm rests, and there is nearly 6-inches of back-and-forth travel for extra leg stretching activity.
The Mazda5 Grand Touring has heated front seats and automatic climate control, which help to maintain the cabin in a more pleasant and comfortable atmosphere.
Mazda5 is built on a sports sedan platform, enabling it to create a tight 36.7-foot turning circle. Even the racing-inspired aerodynamics enhance the handling.
The standard 5-speed sport automatic transmission is an automatic with shift-for-yourself control. Tight parking is not a problem, neither is traveling a busy thoroughfare or a single stretch of country road into the high country.
Providing all this power for speed and comfort is the MZR 2.5-L DOHC engine with variable valve timing. You get a spirited performance, plus an estimated 22-city and 28-highway mpg. Torque is 163 lb.-ft. at 4,000 rpm and power output is 157 bhp at 6,000 rpm.
Mazda uses lightweight aluminum alloy wheels, which allow improved handling and reduced unsprung weight. The 4-wheel independent suspension provides a smooth and responsive ride. On top of that, the anti-lock brakes help to maintain safe steering during an emergency situation.
The cabin tends to be a little noisy. Even when the road is a smooth surface, singing tires can be easily identified.
Manufacturer’s suggested starting price is $24,570.
On a personal note, Mazda dealers participate in their Mazda Drive for Good that benefits charitable programs across the nation. Millions of dollars are given annually, plus more than 50,000 hours of volunteer work was given last year to local, state, and national charities.
3-year/36,000 mile Bumper-to-bumper limited warranty
3-year/36,000 mile 24/7 Roadside Assistance
5-year/60,000 mile Limited Powertrain warranty
5-year/unlimited mileage warranty against body rust through
Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or firstname.lastname@example.org.