"Had long considered this car but bought a Honda Fit for better mileage. Did have it as a rental car this year (Jan '09) leaving from Denver to Vail for skiing. Standard low profile all-weather tires coupled with no traction control mean no grip. Having been renting cars of all sorts for years on this same route and never had a problem. When I say no traction I mean that you are afraid to stop in a plowed parking lot because you may not be able to move. I'm not talking that it can't overcome a few inches of snow, I'm talking an inch of snow over typical glazed asphalt common in snow country. I expect that replacement 15" wheels with real snow tires would solve most of the problem. Apart from this the car handled the mountain passes on I-70 and was a quiet pleasant drive."
"I've had my '08 Grand Touring Mazda5 10 months now and have put 14K miles on it. My 4 kids are teens and older now, so I didn't necessarily need the room for them, but wanted to be able to tote *my* friends around. So I don't need 6 seats all the time, and usually keep the 3rd row folded down.
I was used to driving a V6, so was concerned about not having enough power, but there is plenty of ZoomZoom in this vehicle. I am an aggressive driver who likes to go fast, FAST, and am usually passing someone. No problems doing that in my Mazda5.
There are only a few minor things I would change, but they aren't enough to keep me from recommending this vehicle to you. The 5 isn't the quietest car out there... but I usually have the radio on loud enough that it isn't a problem. And you can easily talk over the noise. The ride isn't completely smooth, but not rough enough to cause problems (and with fibromyalgia, a too-rough-ride can definitely cause problems.) The driver seat is power-controlled and the doors don't automatically lock. Like I said, no big deal in the overall picture.
The seats are comfortable enough for 6 adults for short (less than 2 hour) trips and for 4 adults on longer trips.
One of my friends has mobility issues and it is difficult for her to get into or out of most vehicles because the seats are too low or too high. She has told me that the Mazda5 is the PERFECT seat height for people with her type problems.
I recently borrowed an '08 Mazda6 for a weekend, while my 5 was in the shop (getting minor issues with the Nav/DVD system repaired). I hated it! Felt cramped and kept hitting my head on the doorframe (I'm only 5'6). Getting back in my "micro"van was so nice, with all the feeling of space it has. It certainly doesn't feel "micro" on the inside!"
"We have loved our Mazda5 ever since we got it. It is extremely versatile because you can lay all the seats down to transport things. I have to admit that there is not much cargo space if all the seats are filled but for the gas mileage and the number of seats it is well worth it."
"The only drawbacks with this vehicle are the low ground clearance and lack of power for climbing hills/merging with full car. Otherwise it gets about 23mpg on mixed driving and can get a family of 6(small kids preferably for back seats) from point a to b economically."
"I bought 2006 used one on 44500 miles. drove 900 miles on highway in two days just after purchase. MPG is GREAT (30 miles per gallon !!!). Very comfort even long distance trip to driver and passengers. enough power & very fast on highway (Actually I worried about the 2,3 liter power on the basis of the editor's review before purchase, they say, 'not enough reserve power, or passing power', BUT after driving, that worry gone out away!!!) smoth transmission(Automatic), pretty quiet engine. impressive big inside space. easy sunroof control, good visibility,
I hope in town's MPG would be over 25 !, I recommend this car to everyone who concerns MPG and comfort trip on."
"We have 3 dogs, 2 pit bulls and a great dane. We also have a baby on the way. We have been searching for a vehicle which could hold all of these, as we were stuck with a chevy s10 and a neon. We didn't want a typical minivan, both for appearance and gas mileage, yet we didn't want a gas-guzzling suv either. So, we went to the local pet store for some feeder mice for our snake.. and 3 hours later we had purchased this car (Grand Touring trim) from the tent sale in the parking lot! It is so perfect, and I love that it's a minivan with the attitude of a sports car. I obviously don't expect the get-up-and-go of a small car, but this car does have kick to it, and I love the "man-a-matic" shifting!"
"Great vehicle for a family of 3 or 4. Although only a 4 cylinder, still has the "zoom-zoom" feel! Great look and sliding doors are wonderful. Better gas mileage than SUV and most minivans. We're averaging about 22 city driving and our previous mini-van was only giving about 16-17. Would recomend this vehicle!!! :) Would like to have vents in the second row for heating and cooling."