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Mazda 5 vs Kia Rondo



  • Any opinions on long-drive (can't evalutate too much in test drives) comfort of DRIVER seat in the KIA rondo, Mazda5, Kia Soul/Sorrento, Scion xb?? I'm rather short (5'2") and need to scoot the seat forward a lot - esp if there's no telesope wheel. But even w/ telescoping I still need to scoot up to reach the pedals!! I have back problems, thigh problems, and sciatica.... I also really need an armrest/console armrest --- in several cars I've tested the consoles doesn't reach my arm once I scoot up - even if the console "slides". The only armrest that worked so far (for me) is the Mazda5 b/c the armrest is attached to the seat - but it's small (as someone mentioned) and the "console" is skimpy w/ no cover (also mentioned before). Ironically the Mazda5's lumbar support adjust didn't seem too helpful - backs w/o the support were just as good or better - (ex, the Mazda3 back seemed more supportive - I tested it for fun). Seems like components from each of these vehicles need to be put together in one! (Yes, I know I'm being picky, but I also keep my vehicles until they die, and i can't be in pain while I drive). Other than driver comfort, I consider safety and reliability next important, than MPG and cargo capacity/versatility.... But mostly the seat - b/c if I can't sit in the car I'm not going to be using it anyway!!! Thanks!!!
  • I have a '05 Mazda 3i which I've owned for almost 5 years and I purchased our '08 Rondo LX V6 to serve as my wife's and family vehicle just over 11 months ago.

    I find my Mazda 3i's driver's seat and driving position to be comfortable for me and would assume that a Mazda 5's driver's seat should be similar. Note that I'm 5'8 and ~153 lbs.

    My Mazda's driver's seat is adjustible for seatback angle, height & lumbar support and the steering column tilts and telescopes.

    I'd say our Kia Rondo LX's driver seat is also fairly comfortable-at least for me. However, I can't say how comfortable it may be on a long trip since my wife drives it 95% of the time and so far I have not driven it on a long trip. As I recall the Rondo's seat also has adjustments for seatback angle, height, and (I think) lumbar support. The steering column only adjusts for tilt (doesn't telescope). The seat bottom might be a little short for taller drivers, but this could also be a blessing for those who are relatively short in stature. I do like the relatively high "chair like" seating position in the Rondo and the significant amount of headroom. The second row seat also is relatively spacious for two adults. Note that our car has the optional third row seats, which also includes fore-and-aft seat adjustibility for the 2nd row.

    I've read comments from some who claimed the driver's seat in the Rondo was uncomfortable for them and I can undertand how larger drivers might have a hard time finding enough space in most any midsize to small vehicle-particularly ones manufactured by Japanese and Korean companies.

    Regardless of what I or anyone else may think, the only person who can determine whether or not the seat & control adjustments in a vehicle can be set to a position that will be comfortable comfortable for you!
  • Finding a budget-friendly car is tough enough; when you have kids, it becomes more difficult. I've picked ten cars which I think represent the best family cars for under $20,000.
    --- Aaron Gold, Guide

    7. KIA Rondo
    10. Mazda5

  • castg1castg1 Posts: 34
    Some info on Mazda's i-stop engines.
    - One of those 'why haven't I thought of that' kind of solution'.
  • 93949394 Posts: 67
    SMART !

    a good alternative until the price of hybrids come down to a more affordable level.

  • You would think the Istop would be a selling point in the USA even if it didn't impact the stated EPA ratings.

    I wonder if it adds any reliability issues? It seems a sensible thing to have on most models. Air conditioning would be a problem in extended stop and go traffic unless it was able to run the AC electrically.
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    Mazda 5 - 1,627 (1,340 in Jan. '08)
    Rondo - 356 (1,657 in Jan. '08)
  • speddyspeddy Posts: 16
    very interesting. Where do you find information like that? I was interested in seeing sales numbers for all cars.
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    I get the US figures from the newswire as they come out first, but KIA US does post their sales for all their models on there website. For some reason KIA Canada doesn't do this.
    If you like sales statistics for all manufacturers, I find this site very good and entertaining. He covers both US and Canada.
  • speddyspeddy Posts: 16
    Thanks! I used to read this kind of information in Car and Driver, but they stopped puting that sort of information in a long time ago.
  • My wife is 5' tall and finds the Mazda 5 comfortable.

    What we are not happy with is the horrible reliability. :mad: We have a 2007 and the sunroof exploded for no apparent reason soon after getting the car. The clutch exploded at 92,000 km and the engine went at 108,000 km. None of this was covered by Mazda.

    The car has been extremely expensive due to all these problems. I'd go with the Kia. It can't be any less reliable than a Mazda :lemon:

    We joke that our Mazda goes Boom Boom Boom instead of Zoom Zoom Zoom
  • speddyspeddy Posts: 16
    Can you say ugly? My uncle also said that he had a Kia and something went wrong with it and the mechanics couldn't fix it. They even told him that. It would go between half power and full power with no explanation. He had to trade it in for next to nothing. So two big factors to buy the Mazda.
  • Was your uncle's Kia a Rondo or another model, and how long ago? I understand they have made great improvements in reliability in recent years.

    We did buy an '09 Rondo just before Christmas. So far, so good. When my heavy footed husb drives it, the mileage is not good. But all the more reason not to make short stops, and zoom when the light turns green.

    I drove it most of the way from MA > NJ and got 35 mpg. So there.

    One thing that does annoy me is the dome light does not go on when you open only the back gate (Only annoying at night! lol) I am planning to get a stick-on LED light for the post next to the gate.

    Otherwise, very manueverable, peppy drive, lots of room to haul both cargo and people at same time---which is what we were looking for---without being a minivan or a big honking SUV. And it has 3 seats in second row, which the Mazda 5 does not, and which we also need.

    Oh, one other thing---DD goes to college in another year. We were able to put a large down on this one, and we will have it paid off before she eneters---so we will not be carrying a car laon when she is in college. That matters a lot to us. A 30 - 35k car wd not have made that possible.
  • Driversherri--

    We bought an '09 Rondo just bef Christmas. I am 5'3" and DH is 6'2." I'll be the primary driver, so the comfort etc for me counted most in choice--although he has to be able to sit in it too!

    The driver's seat has 3 adjustment controls--you can push a ratchet-lever that makes it higher, you can push another one that changes the angle of the seat back, and there is the usual bar under the seat that slides it back & forth. I make the seat as high as possible--DH finds that too high & changes it. There is plenty of head room no matter who is driving.

    I slide the seat forward more than he does, but you can keep from being right on top of the steering wheel. I also angle the seat back a bit -- I really do not like the way the head protector bumps the back of my head. But I can fix that with adjustment of seat angle.

    We chose the cloth seats (not liking leather in summer), and I sprayed them 3x with Scotchgard before using them. It had snowed heavily 2 dys before we picked it up, so we brought beach towels to put on the seats before we drove it home! I also Scotchgarded the carpeted back deck. I don't know why they put carpet back there--no one is going to sit on it. Plastic would have been better imo. No I did not get the cargo tray--the dealership was a bunch of crooks and we were not going to get anything we did not have to from them. I'll buy one from that place someone else recommended, and I can get it to match the car color there, too.

    As far as comfort goes--I feel fine. I had been driving a Grand Caravan, so this one is a bit less plush than I am accustomed to. But I haven't had a problem on long drives. If I really wanted more softness under my heiny I suppose I wd get a cushion, but so far, it's not an issue.

    I have to say though, that when I scoot up the seat, the console is left behind. I have never driven resting my arm on those things, so this is not an issue for me. In a Rondo the console has 2 "decks," one for items and the other is where the iPod docks, and where you shd stash small stealables. Ours is getting plenty of use from DD. One compartment covers the lower, and the top one has a slightly padded lid.

    If armrests and cushy seats and lumbar support matters so much to you, and mpg does not, have you thought of a Honda Odyssey? Those things are like driving living rooms! Very reliable and safe too.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,997
    I wonder if the I-Start technology replaces the starter for cold-starts??
  • smoothsailinsmoothsailin Posts: 73
    edited February 2010
    We have put about 10.5k miles on our Rondo and so far have not had a single problem w/it. Fuel economy has been a bit disappointing, but whenever my wife will be the primary driver I've come to expect subpar results from any vehicle. Part of the problem is that we only live about three miles from where she works. As a result she tends to to make a lot of short trips and especially in winter I've come to realize that short trips can murder any vehicle's average fuel economy results.

    Note that for the first 2k miles I was the primary driver of our Rondo so that I could be sure it was driven carefully during the break-in period. While I was doing most of the driving most of the initial tank averages fell in the 24-to-29 mpg. However, since my wife took over as primary driver it's been fairly rare for her to top 20 mpg/per tank except when she's driven the car to visit family members living 60-80 miles from our home.

    Except for (my wife's) fuel economy results we've both been very happy with our first Kia. The Rondo appears to be a well-built, reasonably comfortable, fairly quiet, suprisingly roomy, reliable and versatile vehicle (ours is equipped w/the third-row seat).

    I'll mention that I also own a '05 Mazda 3i which has also been totally problem-free as the car's 5-year anniversary approaches with just over 71k miles on the odometer. With conservative driving so far I've averaged 38.8 mpg with my 3i (2.0L w/5-speed manual) with most of the miles accumulated while commuting between home and my office @ ~55 miles/day. Note that this average is based on all miles driven and gallons purchased since I brought the car home from the dealership on 3/1/05.

    While I admittedly like the looks of the Mazda 5 somewhat better than that of our Rondo, I have no regrets over our decision to purchase our Rondo vs. a Mazda 5 due to the better deal we were able to negotiate. We ended up paying 15.1k for our '08 LX V-6 before taxes and fees. MSRP per the window sticker including options for our LX V6 was ~ $22k.
  • 93949394 Posts: 67
    i don't think I-Start will work very well on a cold engine, in freezing winter.

  • Did KIA even produce a 2010 Rondo? My local dealers all have only '09s. I have a Sedona minivan which is just too large for my current needs, so I've been looking at the M5 and the Rondo. I've been extremely pleased with the Sedona and would buy a new KIA again without hesitation, though I'm not nuts about the front end appearance of the Rondo - it looks like a Pixar car. :-) <---- or like that icon.

    I find it funny that CR gave the Mazda5 the most points for large wagons, and yet the reliability rating they gave it is just average - and is worse than the Rondo's.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,675
    Kia doesn't make a 2010 Rondo. They stopped and several have pointed to the 2011 Kia Sorento as a likely replacement for it.

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

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