Mazda 5

Driver appeal can take the most unlikely forms

Evo rating
Price
from £16,300
  • A genuinely good drive
  • Wrong sort of virility symbol

Does being behind the wheel of an MPV mean the death of driving as an enjoyable experience? Actually, no. We know the Ford Focus C-Max is a decent drive. And the new Mazda 5 is a dynamic revelation given that it's a six-seater (three rows of two) with space for a slender seventh if you fold out an extra seat in the middle row. Underneath it has a Focus-derived platform but suitably raised, lengthened and with sills strengthened to carry the sliding doors. The engine is related to that used in the new MX-5, but the 2-litre Mazda 5 we tried in Scotland felt keener throughout its rev range than the MX-5s sampled in Hawaii. This bodes well for the Euro MX-5 later in the year. The other curious result of the comparison of 5-badged Mazdas is that the MPV-shaped one also has more consistent, feelsome steering. Excessive road roar apart, the Mazda 5 is a surprising delight to thread along fast, sinuous roads. Its ride is supple but tightly damped, it stays focused under high cornering loads, neither leaning nor lurching nor understeering any more than a decent Focus would. An MPV with evoness indeed; who'd have thought...

Specifications

Engine1999cc, 4-cyl, dohc, 16v
Max power143bhp @ 6000rpm
Max torque136lb ft @ 4500rpm
0-6010.8sec (claimed)
Top speed122mph (claimed)
On saleNow

Most Popular

Mercedes-AMG Project One spied on the 'Ring
Mercedes-AMG Project One – quarter
Mercedes

Mercedes-AMG Project One spied on the 'Ring

AMG’s F1-derived hypercar is nearly ready to rival the Valkyrie and T.50
16 Apr 2021
High performance Volkswagen ID GTX models on their way
GTX
Volkswagen

High performance Volkswagen ID GTX models on their way

GTX badge to denote high-performance EVs in VW ID range
16 Apr 2021
All-electric Ferrari confirmed for 2025 reveal
Ferrari badge
Ferrari

All-electric Ferrari confirmed for 2025 reveal

Ferrari has confirmed its first EV, but first three new models are due in the coming months
15 Apr 2021