"I had a small sedan that I was a bit sad to sell, but with four kids, it just was too difficult to not have a second vehicle to take us around. I have a large minivan that gets about 20 MPG, but it is a land whale and not great in traffic nor parking lots.
The 2008 Mazda Mazda5 Grand Touring has been a great car for us. It is nimble and speedy in traffic, the automatic/manual shifting is available for if I want a bit more fun and the quad seating for six is great.
My kids are all under ten years old, so the leg room issues in the back are not a problem in the back, though I'd like a little more space for the driver.
Would this be the preferred vehicle for six NFL linebackers? Probably not. But for a family, it has been very nice, even when my parents change the composition to 4 adults and 2 kids.
The gas mileage has been around the listed of 24 MPG, with a couple of times getting to 27 MPG.
After a year's driving, the only problem was a faulty gas cap that would not allow me to fill the tank, and the same thing happened with the replacement. My dealership told me the problem was fixed so hopefully this third gas cap won't have a problem.
I love the features on it that I have not previously had in a car: automatic windshield wipers, automatic temperature control, automatic lights that also can be turned off (unlike my minivan), nice controls at the hands on the wheel, side doors that easily open for a five year old, storage under the middle seats. I don't find myself using the adjustable feature on the HID headlights, though I like how bright they are.
The four seats in the back also fold down and there is a surprising amount of storage capacity for a vehicle that's more than half a foot shorter than the Camry. Speaking of which, the Mazda5 has about three times the maximum cargo capacity than the Camry and the turning radius is again more than half a foot shorter than said sedan.
I have the GT model, and it was certainly worth the price for the included upgrades of leather, sound, moon roof and Blue-tooth phone connection, which is very easy to use.
We take the large minivan out for vacations, but the Mazda5 drives so well it has us thinking of buying a roof racket and luggage holder.
I would definitely buy this vehicle again, even though I am not a Mazda fan. There are no other vehicles with the sliding doors that are this versatile at this size and performance with this seating at this price."
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