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Rondo vs Outlander/Rav4/Santa Fe/Mazda5

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Comments

  • dnatodaydnatoday Posts: 8
    Thanks all for your input. We finally bought a Rondo this weekend at Boch Kia in Norwood, MA. We got the Ex with Leather & Premium packages, & the crossbars & bumper protector. I think we got a good price-- $22315, which is about a thousand less than the Edmunds TMV price. We did not trade in the Honda, so we have that to sell if you know anyone who is interested...

    The are going to make it up though because we did take their extended warranty which gives us 10 years bumper to bumper-- with this car being in it's first year in the US, we decided it was worth it. We tend to keep our cars awhile & in 8 years our oldest will be able to drive.

    I've driven about 130 miles so far and the gas gauge is at 1/2, so we will have to see on the mileage. My husband put the tires to 34 psi-- thanks for the tip!

    When we were showing off the car to the in-laws, a BMW X3 parked in the space next to us. The Rondo has the SAME body & interior styling as this car-- the rear side window is the same & the two tone interior-- black & tan is EXACTLY the same! I felt very good about that!

    I'm still getting used to driving an automatic, but we have been having fun with it. Really!
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    Congratulations and glad we could help. I think we would be interested on what some of the deciding factors in selecting the Rondo over the other vehicles that you had mentioned. I know I would, as the Rondo has certainly got my interest, but I won't be in a position to purchase till the 2008 model. Thanks.
  • bnkausikbnkausik Posts: 5
    sorry to hear that. no comparison between the rondo and mazda5 on quality, brand image and reliability. and the price makes it a wooden nickel.

    sorry!
  • medicinemanmedicineman Posts: 135
    Gee, that was a super informative post. I was wondering when the fanboys would show up.

    Presuming that you're a Mazda5 owner, perhaps the Original Poster's choice of the Rondo shakes you a little? You don't need to feel threatened by the OP's choice, nor do you need to feel vindicated whenever someone chooses the Mazda5. Just be happy with your own choice based on your own preferences. Just enjoy your Mazda5.

    BTW, I also comparison-shopped the Rondo and Mazda5. I chose the Rondo. My choice of the Rondo in no way implies that I think the Mazda5 is an inferior product--it just means I had a greater preference for what the Rondo had to offer. I happen to like the Mazda5 and I probably would have chosen it if it could seat up to seven.

    As I stated in an earlier post, a majority of the reviews for the Rondo have been toward the positive side and only a handful (two that I could find) were definitely negative.

    In the 2007 Consumer Reports reliability ratings, Hyundai ranked 7th and Kia ranked 17th out of 36. Kia's ranking is hardly earth shattering, but it may come as a shock to those who think that Kia absolutely must be the worst auto company out there.

    The truth is, the Hyundai-Kia group has come a long way in a very short period of time. People's perceptions just haven't caught up to this new reality (source):

    Despite their recent success, both suffer from earlier quality lapses, says Chris Denove, a partner in J.D. Power.

    "Without question, Hyundai and Kia are two of the most improved brands as far as quality," Denove says. "Unfortunately, consumer perception has lagged behind, so that many consumers still don't shop those brands because they don't think the quality has improved.

    "It takes a long time for consumers to realize that improvements have been made," he says.


    The big boss of Hyundai-Kia is a stickler for quality (although he's currently under investigation for corruption in South Korea, for what it's worth--source):

    Hyundai is a perfect example of what good leadership can do. The chairman of the Hyundai-Kia group is a fanatic about quality and he has instilled that fanaticism into the very fibre of the company. Really, the quality is there now.

    Take it from someone who was actually involved in designing the seats for the Sonata (source):

    and working with Hyundai. they complain about quality to their suppliers worse than toyota, honda. they nit pick everything till its perfect.

    ie. hey that plastic panel is buzzing after we throw it [off] the roof. fix it! hey, when we jump on the seat, it squeeks, fix it!

    etc etc


    Have I cherry-picked these quotes? Of course I have. I don't claim to be objective, either. I'm not saying that Hyundai-Kia is the best or is even better than Mazda or any other auto company. I'm not saying, either, that it's moot to question their long-term reliability. My point is, Hyundai-Kia no longer sucks as much as they used to suck. ;) They're in the game now (when it comes to quality and reliability) and no one would have thought this just five years ago.
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    couldn't agree more, that's why KIA is on my consideration list for my next purchase. If you had ask me six months ago, they wouldn't have been on "my radar", but as they say in their ads "The Power to Surprise" and I was, when I first saw the Rondo. Their upcoming model the Soul looks interesting too!
  • medicinemanmedicineman Posts: 135
    Yep, Kia wasn't on my radar, either. Initially, I had no idea what Kia's reputation was. I fully admit that I'm not a car enthusiast, so I was blissfully unaware of what people thought about Kia. I did know about Hyundai, however, because my oldest brother had a Stellar back in the '80s and he had his share of problems with it. Despite this, I didn't exclude Hyundai from consideration. Like I said, I'm no car enthusiast, so it seemed silly to exclude something that I didn't know much about.

    When I informed a friend that my research included Kia and Hyundai, he told me that Hyundai owned Kia and since Hyundai is crap, Kia is also crap. My friend considers himself knowledgable about cars, but he's also a bit of a blowhard (like most car enthusiasts--oops, did I just say that? ;)). So I wasn't sure if I believed him or not. His opinion did mean something, however, since I didn't do any serious research on Hyundai or Kia until after I had done my research on pretty much every other auto company.

    The rest is history. After doing some actual research and not just believing what the popular perception is, Kia did have "the power to surprise." All my research was telling me that the Rondo was the vehicle that I was looking for, but you know what? I wasn't too happy about it. Why? Because it's hard to feel any pride in ownership when apparently everyone else thinks that your vehicle is crap. To tell you the honest truth, this still affects me, even though I know I made the right decision for myself. So if you're a shallow person like me, this might be a factor in your own decision-making. :)
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    "..but he's also a bit of a blowhard (like most car enthusiasts--oops, did I just say that?"

    Well, I don't know about "most", but there are a couple of them on the Outlander threads for sure....especially one who also dispenses investment advice. :surprise: :confuse:
  • ykangykang Posts: 88
    You are so pathetic :mad:
    Why are you trying to ruin dnatoday's happy moment?
  • dnatodaydnatoday Posts: 8
    >>BTW, I also comparison-shopped the Rondo and Mazda5. I chose the Rondo. My choice of the Rondo in no way implies that I think the Mazda5 is an inferior product--it just means I had a greater preference for what the Rondo had to offer. I happen to like the Mazda5 and I probably would have chosen it if it could seat up to seven.

    This was the deciding flip-of-the-coin for us. We took 5 kids to see Shrek hours after we bought the Rondo and having room for 3 booster seats + two pre-teens was worth it.

    I've had so many compliments on the styling and looks of this car-- has anyone else noticed how much stying it borrows from the BMW X3? Even the two-tone interior.

    I'm still getting used to driving an automatic, but I find the car is pretty stable and yet zoomy in the twisty back roads. We are planning a trip to Cape Cod this weekend to try out the highway miles. We are still on the dealer's tank of gas, so I am not sure how the mileage is going to turn out.

    And thanks Medicneman for the nice words-- my parade isn't rained on. I expect a great experience from this car, though my husband is going to make me post a few wishlist items in the other thread. (mostly tinted windows and/or a car cover-- most cars this type/size have 'em).
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,682
    I am enjoying your comments about Kia. I am one that breaks your hypothesis apart about "nobody would have guessed that Kia would be improving so much to this point only 5 years ago", though. I bought my first Kia in May of '99, a Sephia sedan.

    The rest is history, though, I now own only one car, a 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS. But you might find it interesting that I would return to the new car Kia fold in the future, no doubt about it. I leave my two Kia's behind but not the happy memories of driving both of them. Kia builds solid and good cars and IMHO does a very fine job of body styling them, too.

    So I saw their vast potential in the second half of 1999 and my Sephia not only looked better than a Toyota Corolla of that era but a Honda Civic as well. Those were the competitors Kia was chasing and IMHO they not only caught them but beat them both with that 1999 Sephia.

    As for the Rondo or RAV4 or Outlander, etc., I would look at either the Outlander or the Rondo and no further than those two and you'll get an awesome vehicle.

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    I may be biased as I already have a Mazda5. When we bought it, Rondo did not exist. In addition the RAV4 and the Outlander were still the previous model. The only other model we checked out was a Honda CR-V. Nice car (plus also had a 5 Speed manual transmission) but too SUV oriented for us. Mazda5 fully covered ALL family needs, plus the design and driving has been great since, even with some of those first model recalls, The car still turns heads after close to 2 years.

    Regardless where KIA stands today wrt. Quality, the car is still a KIA (zero style plus always trying to mimic more expensive cars' designs and functionality). I would wait another 5 years before I check one out.

    But please don't take my biased view, just look for Rondo and Mazda5 related public forums (apart from Edmunds, of course). There, you will see why owners prefer Mazda5. Although is a family car, hardcore enthusiasts out there are too many :)
  • irismgirismg Posts: 345
    I respect your opinion about your Sephia, but in my view, my '98 Corolla and the other 8th generation Corollas are some of the better looking cars ever made.

    Thank you...
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Seat up to seven on a Mazda5? As an owner of a Mazda5 for almost 2 years and after seeing the Rondo cramped seating, I hope that the party of seven seated in there (yes, with the official Mazda5 7th seat configuration available in Japan, Europe or Mexico) does not through tomatoes at the driver after 5 minutes :mad: (even kid size human beings, honest). 5-6 is MORE than enough for a car that size, believe me. Do you want to seat more? Buy a gas guzzling Suburban.

    Now, with all due respect, don't make me laugh out loud: Styling borrowed from a BMW X3? Where? Oh well, if there is any (and I may be biased, I accept), at least is a good proof of KIA trying to mimic better cars' design and style. I know that w/ the Mazda5 I did not buy a Beemer or a Mercedes, but at least its design is original and it is so fun to drive.
  • medicinemanmedicineman Posts: 135
    Coolmazda5 wrote:
    Regardless where KIA stands today wrt. Quality, the car is still a KIA (zero style plus always trying to mimic more expensive cars' designs and functionality). I would wait another 5 years before I check one out.

    Not sure what "wrt" means. If by quality we mean aesthetics or looks, then that's really in the eye of the beholder. But I happen to agree with your generalization that Kia's vehicles don't seem to be as stylish or as original as vehicles from a lot of other car companies.

    Aesthetics, however, was far down on my checklist of things that I was looking for in a mini people mover. Don't get me wrong--if a vehicle were truly ugly in my eyes, I probably would be hard pressed to even consider it. But like I said, I'm no car enthusiast, so I couldn't care less about having a hottie of a vehicle or having a vehicle that can go from zero to sixty in a nanosecond.

    I was mostly concerned about practicality and utility. I think it's safe to say that the majority of people who are looking at these kind of vehicles are primarily concerned about this, too. Having said that, I happen to think that the Mazda5 is a nice combination of utility and style, so those two things aren't necessarily mutually exclusive. Again, beauty being in the eye of the beholder, I've heard some people say that they would never consider the Mazda5 just because it has sliding doors. For me, that's a plus (due to its utility), not a minus (due to its looks).

    So why did I choose the Rondo? Because it's small, convenient, configurable, has great safety features, has okay mileage, and drives decently. I could be describing the Mazda5, actually (except some would say that it drives better than just decently). The deciding factor, however, was that the Rondo could seat up to seven people. All those things that I mentioned ain't going to rock the world of any car enthusiast, but for what I was looking for, the Rondo does almost everything just right.

    In fact, car enthusiasts will cringe after I say this :): I don't like having dark tinted windows and I hate how most new cars these days seem to have those tiny streamlined windows at the rear of the vehicle. I want more visibility, not less. Nobody is going to complain that the Rondo is lacking in glass. In fact, some might say that the Rondo looks outdated because of all that glass. That does concern me somewhat, but at the end of the day, being more concerned about practicality and all, all I can say is, "Who cares?"

    Anyway, I personally think the Rondo is a smart looking vehicle. In another forum, someone mocked me for saying that, basically laughing at me for being so clued out. The truth is, I am mostly clued out about what's fashionable for cars these days. I guess I should have the decency to feel embarrassed about that, but for some reason, I'm just too clued out to care.

    Coolmazda5 wrote:
    But please don't take my biased view, just look for Rondo and Mazda5 related public forums (apart from Edmunds, of course). There, you will see why owners prefer Mazda5. Although is a family car, hardcore enthusiasts out there are too many :)

    Umm, okay, if you're talking about forums where owners and enthusiasts are saying how great the Mazda5 is, it seems that most people already think that the Mazda5 is a good vehicle so you don't need to convince us of that.

    If you're talking about forums where there are direct comparisons between the Mazda5 and the Rondo, let me say this:

    Let's presume that all the comparisons were fair in that actual research was done on both vehicles. Let's also presume that most contributors--both common folks and "hardcore enthusiasts"--concluded that the Mazda5 is the superior vehicle. Now, how does that change the fact that I chose the Rondo primarily because it can seat up to seven and the Mazda5 can't (at least in North America)?

    If most people chose the Mazda5, what, exactly, am I supposed to do with that information? Does that somehow make the Rondo more "wrong" for me and the Mazda5 more "right" for me? Should I bang my head against the wall and say, "Damn, I had the wrong preferences and I should have preferred only six seats"?

    You see what I'm trying to say here? I don't really see the point of the pissing contests that always go on in forums like these, because it's always up to individual preferences, anyway. Everyone is always trying to prove with a God-like certainty that "this vehicle is better than that vehicle," but all you really prove is "this vehicle is better than that vehicle for myself." What's really going on here is that you (the generic "you") want your choice to be validated, either by others making the same choice or by dismissing alternative choices. This is just human nature--not like I'm immune to it.

    You know, I've never once denigrated the Mazda5 in any of my posts just to validate my choice of the Rondo. I wish more people were more secure with their own choices so they don't feel the need to denigrate what others have chosen.

    I know I'll get knocked around for that comment, as though I'm advocating that everyone should play nice and nobody has the right to say anything negative, even if it happens to be a valid point. No, I'm not really saying that. I'm just saying, if you're being critical about somebody else's choice, look in the mirror and tell yourself that you're not just acting out of insecurity. You can fool yourself, but you aren't fooling me.

    Yeah, even I'm tired of hearing me talk. :D
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Well articulated medicine man, you won't get knocked around about your comments (at least by me). Remember that this is the beauty of the open forums, it is like a democracy, everybody has an opinion and cannot not be shut just "because" :D

    The only thing I would reply on (after looking at myself in the mirror) is that I don't feel insecure at all. Don't take me wrong, but to me an insecure person is the one who comes to a Mazda5 forum to talk about another brand or model so to feel that at least "I fight them" even in their land and feel better. IMHO, if I would feel insecure, I would have gone to Rondo's forums and claim Mazda is best and bash KIA.

    In the meanwhile, as a good democracy, I will say "what I think is right" here. At the end, that is why is called a "forum".

    I respect people's car decisions, not a problem (it is not my spent money, plus Mazda will not pay me a cent for what I say). Yet, What has tweaked me somehow is that in all the related forums I've seen, the Rondo is always compared to a high-end brand in order to be able to highlight the qualities of the car. From the Mazda5 perspective, I have not seen that at all. Owners just love the car for what it is.

    But hey, thanks for your comments and I hope that mine were not taken wildly :).
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    First of all, I don't own either but....

    I think Mazda5 overall looks better, sportier....Drove a rental M5 but must say I was underwhelmed by its drving dynamics. Seemed worlds apart from the M3 from which it sprung, but perhaps I shouldn't have gone in expecting M3 agility...I think the M5 needs a bit more power, traction/stability control, and a 5-sp auto. Then it would really kick [non-permissible content removed]. All 3 of these the Rondo has, so that, IMO, puts it a leg up on the M5....There is a bit of X3 in the Rondo, when viewed from the back, especially where the body line kicks up at the back....Incidentically our local paper just did a comparo between the 2. They praised both, but they picked the Rondo. If I were buying a family kidsmobile now, and need 5+ seating, but don't need 4WD, I would go with the Rondo, mainly because it is better equipped.
  • bprendersonbprenderson Posts: 99
    How did the Rondo and Mazda5 do in the government and Insurance Ind. crash tests? Thanks.....

    Bubba
  • medicinemanmedicineman Posts: 135
    coolmazda5 wrote:
    Don't take me wrong, but to me an insecure person is the one who comes to a Mazda5 forum to talk about another brand or model so to feel that at least "I fight them" even in their land and feel better. IMHO, if I would feel insecure, I would have gone to Rondo's forums and claim Mazda is best and bash KIA.

    Not sure if you were making a sly reference to it or not, but I actually did make some posts at a Mazda5 forum about the Rondo a couple of months ago. I did say a lot of the same things there as I've said here, so that might have tipped you off (or maybe not).

    After googling for info on the Rondo, I discovered that forum because it had a pre-existing thread discussing the Rondo. I hadn't purchased the Rondo yet and I wasn't totally sure if it were the right choice. Basically, I participated in that thread to outline my reasons for choosing the Rondo and seeing if I could deal with the feedback. If I ended up being wishy washy about it, that meant perhaps I should think more about it. As it turns out, it clarified my reasons for choosing the Rondo. It was a turning point--quite helpful, really.

    As for going there due to my insecurities, I have no idea--because I'm usually insecure, anyway. I would make Woody Allen look like a decisive tyrant in comparison. :D
  • medicinemanmedicineman Posts: 135
    IIHS
    NHTSA

    I searched both websites but could find only info on the Rondo at NHTSA's website.
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Hey Bubba,

    This is what I gathered for the Mazda5 when we purchased it. Not sure if it is really what you are looking for (i.e. related to insurance), but here we go :D. In the past I was not very focused on car safety, but now, with family on-board, the view has changed dramatically, so the articles' related information below supported our purchase:

    http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2005/cr_mazda5.html

    http://www.japancorp.net/Article.asp?Art_ID=12380
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Hey medicineman, I'm only a regular in another forum so unless you have different forum profile names I think we have not "met" until now. ;)

    But now that I'm thinking, Wouldn't that be funny? Following each other around forums to defend/fight our preferences? ;)

    The thing that comes to mind now is for Mazda and KIA to find us and hire us as sales guys or something. I'm pretty sure that with our arguments around we have sold at least 2 extra Mazda5s and Rondos each... :P
  • waygrabowwaygrabow Posts: 210
    Bravo! That is one of the most intelligent comments made on this forum in a long time. Thank you! Like a breath of fresh air!

    It is all about individual preferences. Isn't it great that we have so many different cars to choose from?
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    "I hate how most new cars these days seem to have those tiny streamlined windows at the rear of the vehicle. I want more visibility, not less"

    you hit the nail on the head with this one. That's what makes the Rondo appear so large inside (along with its lighter interior - can't stand black interiors). I have noticed on so many new cars over the last couple of years where the windows keep getting smaller and smaller, more noticeable in particular the Chrysler vehicles. I sat in some of their newer models at the Toronto Auto Show last February and it felt like I was looking out of "gun slots" - felt very enclosed and turned me right off! More and more manufacturers are creating these higher beltlines, with less and less glass area.
  • w9cww9cw Posts: 888
    For coolmazda5, the Rondo we have in the USA is the 3rd Generation Kia Carens. The Carens has been quite successful in Europe, hence Kia's decision to offer it in this market. It's not a new car, per se - new to this market yes, but not in other markets. And, since it's a 3rd Generation vehicle, it's well proven and reliable.
  • w9cww9cw Posts: 888
    There is an structural engineering reason for the higher belt lines, and "vertically-challenged" side windows - it's called side crash worthiness. If you note most of the new cars today have shorter side windows and higher belt lines - this is effectively a requirement to provide improved side crash safety, and penetration resistance.
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Thanks for the info w9cw.

    Yes,also Mazda5 runs under Premacy in Japan and some other Asian countries and has been around for some time already (1999 ?). However the one we purchased is the first model of the 2nd generation (oh man, I hope all this 1st, 2nd yara naming convention makes sense :D). Still, knowing the potential trouble of a first model, we took the risk back in 05 as we were really delighted with its design and versatility. And, as said earlier, even with the early recalls (well ironed out by now) the damn car versatility still surprises us (just the other day we managed to fit a full swing set box, when not even the store guys believed us. They said: "no way it will fit, rent a pick up truck". To their surprise, everything fit just fine).

    As for reliability, wife and baby are the day to day primary driver and passenger and have had zero issues, so it is reliable. Plus, those sliding doors are just plain awesome.

    I have a silly idea. For all Rondo fans I'll step aside defending the Mazda5 attributes based on my arguments and I'll use my wife's...

    She is not into brands, models or engines, yet if you ask her what are her thoughts of a Mazda5 and the potential competitors (she just saw a Rondo the other day at the grocery store), Mazda5 wins heads down (top of her list: sliding doors, low height, 5 speed manual transmission, a really economic 4 cylinder engine, 6 CD Player, it does not look like a typical Soccer Mom Car nor an SUV and is an IKEA box carrier compliant car :D )

    I rest my case ;)
  • growwisegrowwise Posts: 297
    Mazda5 needs to grow a few armrests... Rondo needs new design language both inside and out. Best alternative option I believe is a loaded CR-V in beige/black interior. And no.. I am not biased since I own a 07 mitsu outlander XLS thank you.

    BTW, why is this thread in mitsu forums?
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Growwise replied:
    "BTW, why is this thread in mitsu forums?"

    Good question growwise. It seems that this thread has been placed as "shared" among all featured forums for cars listed in the main topic text (Rondo/Outlander/Rav4/Santa Fe/Mazda5) so possibly that has caused the noise. I.e. When I logged-in the first time I saw the topic under:
    Forums > Vans & Minivans > Mazda Mazda5

    Then I saw the title and I wondered: Why does the Rondo need to compare against the rest, Shouldn't the Mazda5 be compared against the rest instead? Anyway, I promised to rest my case, but I need to be sitting @ the computer today, so... :D
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    There is an structural engineering reason for the higher belt lines, and "vertically-challenged" side windows - it's called side crash worthiness.

    maybe so, but the Rondo has "normal windows" and it gets 4 and 5 stars for side impact. I think is more of styling gimmick!
  • arumagearumage Posts: 922
    The sliding doors are a plus, but I can't even sit in the second row of the Mazda5 since I'm 6'3". The Rondo fits me great even with the front row seats all the way back. The automatic equipped Rondo gets better highway even V6 equipped and is much quieter and smoother. It's not as sports influenced and doesn't come with a manual. It has it's faults, but it's a much better people carrier IMO. Isn't that the goal for these vehicles?
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