"I have three kids and we bought this car brand new around Thanksgiving last year. After driving it seven months, it has definitely grown on me. At first glance, when we were looking to buy my instinct was that it was way too small. I think it's that full-size minivan mentality I had, which meant that anything smaller wasn't going to work, but I have been shown wrong! My husband felt that the price was right and it seats everybody.
I have my six-year-old in the third row in a backless booster (Harmony brand), my six-month-old daughter in the second row, rear facing in a Graco SnugRide, behind the driver. And my three-year-old rides front facing in the second row in his enormous, heavy Graco Nautilus car seat. The second row seats slide easily forwards and backwards to allow for room for my six year old to climb in the back. He can also operate the sliding doors by himself as well as climb in through the hatch and buckle himself in.
We haven't taken it on a long road trip yet, but when we do, we are planning to get a roof rack. Our family of five goes grocery shopping together and we find plenty of room between seats and on the floor, as well as when half of the third row is down, to stuff grocery bags.
Furthermore, a double stroller can fit behind the third row. I was skeptical and it does take a little ingenuity and perfect positioning, but I can get my Joovy Caboose Sit-and-Stand behind third row with both seats up. I do have to take the sunshade off but it works. So, pretty cool, huh?
This car has been an affordable, great fit for our family and as our kids age out of car seats, it will work even better and be even more flexible. ONe more thing: I have used the back half of the third row folded down as a place to change my infant daughter but I've also used the second row captain's chair folded down as a changing "bench", too. Like I said, this car has surprised me with its flexibility.
To be honest, I do sometimes wish I had more room behind that third row but after eight months of ownership I have yet to be in a situation where it absolutely didn't work. I have always been able to make the people/cargo calculus work out.
Best wishes on your car shopping for your family."
"I did much research this new 5 and critics across board praise it!the the touring is best choice @ 21k u get upgraded alloys better grille rr spoiler and side skirts and leather wheel and shift knob..all power is standard!Mazda design is not for all but we are impressed.its the perfect small family hauler that looks great &is fun to drive and suits all our needs w/great gas milage (28mpg),the 157 hp 4 cyl provides plenty of power and is smooth and quiet along with its fluid shifting 5spd auto,wind& road noise is at a low and ride is very smooth despite the low prof 17's,we took on long trip and it did great on highway while providing plenty of comfort..the seats r soft w/good lumbar support and its controls are laid out well and materials are of good quality,storage rooms great with 3rd row down and theres plenty of little stow away area's,they dont really advertise this car and really dont have to,its a winner and a solid choice for for young family"
Cons: "no power side- sliding doors but very easy to open and close with one finger"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"After matching the mazda 5 against the other mini-vans, I thought it had much more value than the others. I felt like I saved about $8000 or $9000 and got pretty much what I wanted. My wife hauls 3 grandkids around in it. It is very reliable and easy to drive and easy to park. With the back 4 seats down. you can haul a lot more than you would expect (fold-up tables, chairs, coolers, food etc). We made one trip to Las Vegas from San Diego over the mountains going there and then again coming back. no problems with power. 28 mpg both ways."
"i did so much research on the perfect family hauler without breaking the bank&also not looking like i 'gave up'&was so happy to find the new 5!it has everything i was looking for to transport my family of 4,the body lines of this car look great from ALL angles,we chose the upgraded 'touring model which adds fogs,spoiler side skirts 17' rims nicer grill &leather wheel,power is surprisingly good w/ smooth tranny & good mpg!turning radius is great!almost like a compact car u can make a u turn anywhere& park with ease!the seats are really comfy w/good back support and captains chairs up front and 2nd row,so its a 2 plus 2 plus 2 in rd row which pops up& down really easy!the dual slide doors are light and easy to use for wifey w kiddies!pass/cargo room is also more then adequate,this mpv is a hot seller in Europe and only car in its class that got rave reviews..much better ad easier then suv w 3rd row,i highly recommend,u won't be disapointed!we love our 2012 5!"
Cons: "No cover on centre console, steering wheel design"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I know a lot of people who have this car and love it, so when I had a child and needed more space, it was a logical choice. Safety rating, value, and gas mileage were important considerations. Gas mileage isn't as good as the Honda Civic I was driving previously, but that's to be expected.
This car makes great use of space, nothing is wasted. The rear-most seats are probably best for kids; my husband and I are both tall, and find the headroom great but leg room lacking back there. The rest of the seating is very roomy. I love that the second row of seats are buckets rather than bench.
I drive a lot, and the built-in bluetooth is great for that. The sound system is good enough for me and the heated front seats are a nice touch. As for the exterior, the new Nagare styling is a definite improvement, and the sliding side doors are brilliant.
My only gripes: 1) I'm not a fan of the steering wheel which forces my hands into the 2 and 10 position due to the lower crossbar. I can't drive with one hand on the bottom of the wheel which is my preference (not correct I know, but been driving like that for years) and 2) I wish the centre console storage had a lid instead of being completely open. I don't like seeing all the junk I store in there and would rather have the ability to cover it up.
I would recommend getting the back windows tinted, which we did. I wish I had sprung for the roof rack."
"Ruined 2 tires at 23000 miles account front end was not in alignment when purchased new even thou I rotated tire every 7500 miles. Mazda dealership informed me warranty would not cover new tires or alignment; was done on my dime. Dealership informed me I should have rotated every 5000 miles even thou owner's manual states every 7500 miles. Serious wind noise at highway speeds. Serious lack of power when 6 adults are on board."
"I have always owned American cars but Consumer Reports Magazine highly rated the Mazda 5 so I test drove it. I fell in love with it instantly! It does not disappoint! Smooth ride, comfortable, lots of room, and good gas mileage for its class of car!"
Pros: "FUNE TO DRIVE, SEATS 6, SLIDING DOORS, SAFE"
Cons: "NONE SO FAR"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I have owned the Mazda5 Grand Touring for 10 months and it has grown on me. I have 3 kids and it is great for hauling a family of 5 around town. The sliding doors make it very easy to get the kids in and out, the gas mileage suits my budget and the zoom-zoom driving appeal keeps the Mazda5 from being anything but boring. The leather heated seats, rain sensing wipers and moonroof give me the same sporty options found on a more expensive vehicle at an even greater value. This Mazda is an overall winner and a very functional multi-purpose vehicle. I have not experienced any problems whatsoever and highly recommend the Mazda to those budget minded families, like mine, that need a larger vehicle without the large price tag."
"Just bought this vehicle new and have almost 500 miles. First the bad then the good. 1. the brakes grind a bit 2. needs more space in front to put personal things 3. no automatic head lights 4. no speakers in the middle area just the front and very rear
Good 1. captain chairs 1st and 2nd row 2. cruise control and audio controls on wheel 3. sliding doors 4. easy to find parking spaces
we are a family of 5 kids range 16 and under the 3rd row is comfortable for adult we are under 5'7. Bought it for $19999"
Pros: "Excellent value for your money. fun to drive"
Cons: "front seats could be better"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"I have had the Mazda 5 for 4 months now and have put on 5000 miles and so far so good.
First, my gripes. This car should get better gas mileage in this day in age. Slightly under powered when loaded up with the whole family and car top carrier. Stock tires are not that great, but have survived winter here in Wisconsin so far (is it over yet) We only have 2 children, if I had a third, which I will not, this car would not work.
Now for the goods. Excellent handling for this type of car, actually fun to drive. Very versatile vehicle. Kid hauler, trips to the hardware store, moving furniture, etc. The GT model, which we bought has all the creature comforts, sans a rear camera and touch screen
This is a niche vehicle and I knew this before purchasing. It is not for everyone but if you have only 2 kids to cart around, I think it is perfect. Roomy, decent on gas, fun to drive and versatile. Would I purchase this vehicle again, if the reliability holds true, heck yes!"
Pros: "love the rear sliding doors, drives nicely"
Cons: "no rear heat, no cargo space when all 6 seats used"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5
"I have 3 kids, 16, 13 and 2. The back row seating is difficult (but not impossible) for anyone older than 10 or so to get to. I'm 5'2", average sized, and it was not comfortable to get back there at all. Once I was back there it wasn't bad LOL! The cargo area when all seats are occupied is extremely small. We could not take anything more than overnight trips as a family; there's not enough room for suitcases and bags. Once you fold down the back seats, the cargo area is nice, though a little irritating if something slips between the bucket seats onto the floor. I do LOVE the sliding back doors. Makes getting the 2 year old in and out of the car much easier! The driver's seat is comfortable, but I personally don't like the headrest. I felt like it was pushing my head and neck into an unnatural and uncomfortable position. That problem solved by turning the headrest around. It looks silly, but it works. I don't care for the armrests in the front. They get in the way if you need access to drinks in the cup holders, so I never use my armrest. Add another adult to the front seat, and it's very awkward to get to your drinks. I'm not crazy about the center storage between the seats - it barely holds a couple CDs and a sewing kit. The radio and 6 disc CD changer are nice - the sound took some getting used to. I never really use the Bluetooth- usually I have the kids with me and don't really like them listening in on the conversations. I like that it gives me the estimated miles left before the gas tank is empty. The AC works nicely, as well as the heater. One of my biggest complaints with it is that there is NO rear heat. It has rear air, but not heat. It takes twice as long to warm up the back of the car, and by the time they get warm, who ever is in the front seat has started cooking. Very frustrating. I have the moonroof, but rarely use it. I had to replace the front tires before 20,000 miles, and the rear tires shortly after.
Overall, I wish I had shopped around a little bit before we purchased this little car."
"Been a good car overall. Great for two kids we did get the optional DVD system. Works well but obscures rear visibility when I'm use. Would recommend checking other aftermarket options. Ours is the 6 spd manual, makes the car feel much quicker and fun to drive, although we've had some issues with it. Dealership has already had to replace 1-2 nd gear synchro. Some concern there maybe ongoing issues hopefully Mazda will take care of us. Other than that I believe the poor snow performance is more a tire issue since the bridgestones that came on the car are awful tires replace ours after 30k because felt downright dangerous in the rain. Lots of tread left too. Great fun to drive family car. Just don't let my wife hear you call it a minivan! Oh yeah, get the windows tinted much better looking and cooler"
Pros: "Handling, room, MPG, willing engine, great value"
Cons: "Options list a bit sparse, 3rd row seat is tight."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This car is Mazda's best kept secret. I planned to buy a Mazda CX-5 until I drove the Mazda 5. It handles like my Audi wagon did and is just as easy to park, yet it's got room for 6 people or 97 cubic feet of cargo--that's full size SUV territory! I'm averaging 29 mpg and it's not even broken in yet. Oh, and you can easily buy one for well under $20k out the door. What's not to like? Sure it's not the sexiest car on the road, but if you can get past that superficial nonsense, you will quickly realize this is an astoundingly useful car at great price that is genuinely FUN to drive. I even got mine with slick-shifting 6 speed manual (don't worry, there's a fun "sport shift manual for you ninnies that can't handle a clutch) Listen, I'm a single guy and an avid driver, I don't have a baby-on-board sign and I love this car, that should tell you something. Don't punish yourself with an SUV or crossover with numb steering and a mashed potato suspension just because you need a roomy vehicle. If you're looking at SUV's because you need the room, but you don't NEED 4 wheel drive or off-road ability, do yourself a favor and take a serious look at the Mazda 5. Go for a test drive while you still can because Mazda is sadly discontinuing this model. A vigorous test drive of this car on a windy road WILL make you a believer in the Zoom-Zoom. You can chuck it into corners with near reckless abandon and it carves through them like a scalpel. You can take it down a 30 mph highway exit ramp at 55 mph with total confidence, no exaggeration. If you can find a car that does as many things as well as this one does for under $30-40K, then buy it. I promise you if you enjoy driving at all and you need a roomy car, you will NOT find a better value than this, period."
Pros: "Flexible seating, fun to drive, handles great"
Cons: "5 speed tranny, no power seat options,"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I have owned my car for almost 3 years now and it has 82,500 miles. As a daily driver in mixed traffic situations I average between 23.5-25mpg. On a recent trip to Detroit mostly highway miles I averaged just over 30mpg @65mph. The car has plenty of storage and cubbies and my over 6 foot kids love to ride in the second row with the bucket seats and plenty of leg room. What drew me to the car was the value, interior flexibility between passengers and cargo and the size of the vehicle. The car is great to drive aggressively in curves and has plenty of pep to get your blood flowing if that is what you like to do. The interior cleans easily and getting into and out of the vehicle is easy with the dual sliding doors. The cons to this vehicle are the lack of power seats, front leg room, no power outlets for the second row and the 5 speed automatic transmission, an extra cog would improve gas mileage I believe."
Cons: "I lov because have cup holder in everything seat"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Hi i have 4 kids ages4,6,13,14 this car is perfect for my family the space is increible im 6.2 tall im fit good all my girl are tall and the space is perfect when we going to the trip i buy the rack for the roof and put everything on top of my car i lov my car is dynamic look like racing car i put all my windows black make a diferent on this car"
Pros: "nice to drive in daylight on major highways"
Cons: "Only one electrical port in front cabin."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"Positive reviews: The Mazda 5 grand touring offers a lot of standard features and has plenty of power.The engine and transmission is smooth and the ability to shift it like a manual transmission is very useful if you have to descend a lot of hills. Very comfortable to drive on long trip.
Negatives:Low beam headlights are terrible on country roads.You can't see 30-40 yards in front on a undulating road.The car is terrible in snow.The traction control kicks in on a hill and slow the car down to the point where you have to turn around and go back,turn the traction control off and hope you can make it. Don't buy it if you live in the country where it snows."
"“50/50 Weight Distribution” is touted as the all-encompassing term thrown around for balanced rear-wheel drive sports cars. Remember, this is the company that removes weight and simplifies with cars like the Mazda Miata, a car with 51%/49% weight distribution. Why hasn’t Mazda bragged about its sporty minivan's weight distribution?
After many failed Google searches for “weight distribution Mazda5 NOT Miata”, I finally stumbled upon Consumer Reports, which reports that this vehicle has 51%/49% Front / Rear weight distribution.
The engineers at Mazda have done well to keep the weight down. It’s the lightest vehicle with sliding doors and three rows of seats. The sliding doors are very light, so there is no need for heavy electric motors.
"It’s more fun to drive a slow car fast than it is to drive a fast car slow."
Toss the 157hp Mazda5 into some tight curves and it will only beg to go faster. Sure everyone expects the boy racers in two door coupes, and sporty looking cars to tackle a corner with some zest. I think there’s something to be said about a vehicle with sliding doors, barreling down an onramp in second gear, screaming toward the redline to accelerate onto the highway as quickly as possible. I’ve passed a good number of German cars like BMW M3s, and Porsche 911s around two lane onramps. The double-take I get is priceless.
After the my wife and son are tucked away at home, going for a late night drive for the heck of it still has some meaning. I have not given up on life by buying a Mazda5. My wife has brought a life into this world, and I picked a vehicle that allows me to maybe one day show my son that he doesn’t have to compromise passion for practicality."
Pros: "Great value, great drive, very functional."
Cons: "mpg / power trade-off could be be better"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"We just bought a 2013 Touring with the moonroof package. I commute 60+ miles every day, and I needed something efficient but also able to haul my kids around (they are 4, 2, and almost 1). We traded in a Nissan Armada, and I haven't had any regrets. This thing is genuinely fun to drive, and while I won't be winning any drag races, I smile in the turns. It is very easy to park, the little ones have no problem getting in and out, and I love driving it! The Mazda5 isn't fancy, but it does what it is meant to do extremely well.
My advice to potential buyers is: know what you are getting. This is an economical, around-town, point-A-to-point-B gem; it isn't meant to be a large scale gear hauler like a regular minivan or a large SUV (unless you have a roof rack). One stroller and some groceries are no problem, but I would be hard pressed to fit my family of 5 inside along with weekend bags and a stoller. To be fair, however, I haven't tried."
"We have a 2013 Mazda5 Sport with 22,000 miles. The car has a serious paint adhesion problem. It has flaked off around the wheel wells to bare metal, and on both sides of the car from the rocker panels up about 18" on the doors. I have taken it to the dealer for warranty repair, and that was declined. I also called Mazda North America and requested warranty reaper, and they declined it too. We are very disappointed in the paint quality of this car and will not purchase another Mazda (we bought a CX-9 on the same day as the Mazda5 for about $60,000)."
"The only downside of the car is the A/C. Even with windows tinted as dark as the law allows, it takes a long time to cool down in Texas summers. Our 20' long Suburban easily cools in 1/3 of the time. That's a big let-down and I'll be hunting for some sort of band-aid to remedy it.
Wifey spends her time tooling about the 'burbs with 4-yr old, 2-yr old, and 3-mo old kids. She was driving the Suburban (I'm in that now) and loves the Mazda's ease of parking, maneuvering, and ingress/egress for the kids. No worries of them falling on their heads from 4' up in the air like the Suburban. Two kids ride in the middle row with oldest in back. Half of rear seat is folded down for stroller. Groceries fit on the floor. It's no road machine for 5 w/ luggage, but that's why we have a Suburban. Around town, we only use the Mazda 5. And as a truck guy, I'll admit publicly it ACTUALLY IS FUN TO DRIVE."