We had the opportunity to drive over a variety of surfaces and the Mazda soaked up bumps with ease, while not feeling too much like a marshmallow. So, a good all-round package from Mazda, offering good comfort, space and versatility for the money. The Mazda5 comes with a five-year or 90 km service plan, a four year or km warranty and a three-year MazdaMotion Roadside Assistance plan. Not bad for a heavily-loaded people-hauler.
The cabin has a classy feel, although I would prefer soft-touch plastics on the dashboard. That is, until he turned and saw the equally dusty Mazda5, loaded with two mountain bikes and luggage for a long weekend. Service intervals are 15 km. The Mazda5 is hauled along briskly by a two-litre petrol engine mated to a six-speed gearbox. So when the chap and his wife arrived at the car park in their dusty Nissan Navara, he was feeling pretty good, exploring Africa and all that. The Mazda5 comes with a five-year or 90 km service plan, a four year or km warranty and a three-year MazdaMotion Roadside Assistance plan. Essentially it has three rows of two seats, with an additional small seat in the centre of the middle row, which the Mazda chaps in white coats call Karakuri. Even at higher speeds the Mazda remained stable and inspired confidence on fast sweeps, although it was not as at home on tight bends. The sliding doors are handy as they create a large open space for loading items through the doors, and enable easy loading in confined spaces such as in a garage. So, a good all-round package from Mazda, offering good comfort, space and versatility for the money. We had the opportunity to drive over a variety of surfaces and the Mazda soaked up bumps with ease, while not feeling too much like a marshmallow. But after a few days the powered sliding doors stopped working and we had to open and shut them manually. Not bad for a heavily-loaded people-hauler. Perhaps the closest rival is the Toyota Verso 1. The only problem we had with the Mazda was with the electric sliding doors which can be opened and closed via the remote on the key, or by pressing buttons on the dash. This seat can be tilted sideways, and with the third row of seats lowered, creates a walk-through space between the second row of seats. It has bags of space and on trips we simply folded the rear seats to get a cavernous loading area, and never felt the need for a trailer. The small seat in the centre of the middle row, which the Mazda chaps in white coats call Karakuri, seat can be tilted sideways to create a walk-through space between the second row of seats. Guess it spoilt his day a bit I never felt a need for more power and on the way to the Drakensberg had to put in some fast distance in order to get to the resort before it closed. Essentially a people-hauler is a long box with wheels which probably has designers scratching their heads while trying to think of something different with curves, while keeping the box. Or the two rows of seats in the rear can be lowered to create a large loading area. We had the top-of-the-range 2. Although it has a smaller engine, the Peugeot produces similar power output making it a valid comparison. Our fuel consumption remained pretty steady at about 9.
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