2012 Mazda 5 Consumer Review: No Really, its a Wagon

2012 Mazda 5 - Consumer Review

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No Really, its a Wagon
By landric on


2012 Mazda 5 Sport 4dr Minivan (2.5L 4cyl 6M)


I just purchased my 5 this past weekend, so my impressions are limited to recent experience.
I do plan to update my experiences as time goes on.
I traded a 2009 Kia Sedona in on the 5 Sport with a manual transmission.
The Sedona, while a fantastic vehicle for trips was more than my family needs for day to day use.
I wanted something smaller, more economical, and more fun that could still haul my family of five as needed.
The 5 is perfect for that, I love how it drives and handles and after several years stuck driving an automatic mini-van I love the six speed manual.
I owned a 2002 Mazda Protege ES 5-speed for four years and 115k and had a great experience, the 5 is just as much fun.

Best Features

Handling is fantastic, this little car does not drive like a mini-van, hence my decision to call it a wagon. The shifter is smooth and easy to use, the engine is quiet at idle and crusing, and it has enough guts to get the 5 moving. It isn't exactly fast, but the driving experience is such that it feels faster than it is. I love the sliding doors and third row seats combined with a smaller car feel, and did I mention the available manual transmission? The gauges are clear and easy to read, and I am getting to really like the high mounted center information center. I loved my Protege ES, the 5 feels like an evolution of that car with more interior room and power. Zoom zoom!

Worst Features

There are some little things I would like to see change. The car needs more storage bins, my Sedona spoiled me in that respect and the 5 seems lacking now. I wish the manual transmission Sport was available in more color choices (I got metropolitan gray and like it, but I would have gone with Black if it was available with the 6-speed). The Sport should also include the trip computer and Sirius radio as standard. I don't much care about Bluetooth or other techy options, but I am sure there are manual transmission buyers who do, such should at least be optional. I can't comment on fuel economy yet, I've yet to fill up, but the 5 sure seems to be doing much better than the Sedona there.
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By landric
on 02/09/13 14:39 PM (PST)

Another fuel economy update, overall MPG average so far is 25.2. Recently made a trip from North Carolina to Kansas City. The 5 averaged 33 MPG for the trip, and had a high of 37.2 MPG on one 300+ mile leg.

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By landric
on 04/23/12 02:20 AM (PDT)

Just a brief update on fuel economy. So far I am averaging 25.3 MPG in mixed driving. My Sedona's overall lifetime average in a similar mix of driving was 19.1 MPG. I'm thrilled with the improvement and hope the trend continues.

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