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Mazda 5 vs Kia Rondo



  • vegasrondovegasrondo Posts: 11
    Just a recap. I rented a Mazda 5 from Hertz for a few days before deciding on the Rondo. When I turned the Mazda 5 in, it had about 15,000 miles on the odometer and gave me a solid 20 MPG for the time I had it. My 4 cylinder Rondo EX has been returning 16 MPG during the height of the Las Vegas summer. My Rondo now has 825 miles on it.

    I topped off the tank this AM. It was 87 degrees outside. I then checked the tire air pressure, then drove to the freeway. I put 63.8 highway miles on the car, all but 4 miles at 68 MPH. The cruise control worked great. I then topped off the tank, 2.3 gallons, and my little experiment gave me 27.7 MPG on the highway with the A/C running full tilt. When I got home, the temperature was 91 degrees. The 2007 EPA highway ratings is 29. For 2008 it will be, I think, 27. So I am getting the adjusted EPA MPG, and that is real world MPG. I am real satisfied.

    All in all, I am very pleased with the highway mileage of the Rondo. As an extra note, the infinity Stereo, while still being horrid to see the display, does have incredible sound. During my little road trip I listened to Abbey Road (side B) and Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band. The sound reproduction and positioning was fantastic.
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Thanks for the recap vegasrondo. I'm assuming that you are referring to the Beatles soundtracks, right? ;)

    You may need to get more tanks calculations to get a good average but to me that sounds like OK mileage. I wouldn't mind a Manual Transmission to get more than that though :). I have been able to get 31-34MPG on 70-75MPH 3-4hr trips (including lugagge, 2 passengers and nasty 1hr DC 495 beltway stop-n-go traffic).

    Happy driving...
  • renu_prenu_p Posts: 6
    Can you tell about your experience with the dealer? I visited a dealer and he said the market value for the car (rondo) is 2k higher than the sticker price. It took me time to understand that the price of the vehicle is 19K+2K. I mean you go into Kia expecting to have 2K knocked off right away not added. I know it might be just so he can start the negotiation at a higher figure. I would rather start at 19K and go down instead of 21K. I am in New Jersey. I have seen this market adjustment at some other dealer also and it puts one off. And they want us to be smart and understand this very quickly. Meaning if you do not get it then you are a little behind. Any similar experience you or anyone had. Still trying hard to be dumb and not understand. I know it is difficult to get the real prices paid by others but I do not want to pay more or think that I paid more.
  • If the dealer you bought the Rondo from is the only game in town, then you pay whatever they can get from you. It sounds like the dealer was trying to recoup the rebate as well as add to their profit margin. I find that in Las Vegas dealers that sell multi lines of cars (like Mazda, GMC, Mitsubishi, Kia - which my dealer carries) try to do this a lot less than just a Kia dealer would. A solo make dealer has to try and make as much money as possible on each sale. If you don't buy the car you came in for, they don't have another brand to guide you to.

    Since you bought the car, and seem to really like it, that's all that matters in the long run. It will still depreciate at the same rate, and it will still cost the same to insure and operate. Enjoy the Rondo. The moral to the story is, the real price of a car is whatever someone is willing to pay for it.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    I've never heard of any Kia dealer adding two grand. That's obnoxious behavior. For the record, I bought an Optima rather than a Sonata because the local Hyundai dealer insisted on adding on to the sticker-- although they're fishing for suckers and I could have easily negotiated it down it is a terrible turn off.
  • kivokivo Posts: 64
    I've tried to explain this before - you shouldn't care about the sticker price at all. Find out the dealer cost (invest $12 from CR and get all the info you need) and negotiate UP from the dealer cost. If the dealer wanted to tack on money to the sticker price, walk out. Sticker price is of no concern to you. Hope you do well with your negotiating. Good Luck!!
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Just find another close dealer in any car web site. If you live in NJ you may not need to drive long from the original one, I'm sure. Regardless of the type of car (except a collector's edition like a Lamborghini Diablo) you can find a good deal, especially if you are looking for a 2007 model in the middle of August. Now, if it is a 2008 model, dealers may be more stiff to negotiate a discount, but that's pretty much it, there should not be imaginary market value "charges".
  • renu_prenu_p Posts: 6
    thanks vegasrondo , csandste , kivo , coolmazda5. i have not bought the vehicle yet. still deciding where rondo/mazda5. i found that they are the only vehicles with third row and good price or ok mpg. in rondo whether v4 or v6 is also a question. i am leaning toward v4 to avoid the extra cost and for better mileage. i have seen too much variation on rondo mpg and do not know if it is the v6. i do not know if the particular car one gets matters. i heard that with v4 if i have 5 passengers or more load then it would have to work extra hard and could consume more gas then a v6 with same load. is this true?
    yes, i think better to put in $12 for consumer reports. there was also one other site which had car review at $1 per car and a minimum of $5. thanks
  • I just bought from a local dealer here in MA for $1300 UNDER sticker price - and that was for a Rondo with a 3rd row, premium package and V6. Add to that the incentives ($1000 rebate, 2.9%/60 months financing, extra $400 grads) and it came out very reasonable.
    If you are interested in a 5 seater, then they will even lower the price more (but then again, there are many other options). Use the net to find other dealers within your state (and perhaps out of your state) - for 2K$ you can take a nice vacation driving to pick one up... (isn't this line better suited for the dealer experience forum?)


    I picked the Rondo over the Mazda because: (i) more space for the kids (ii) more space for the driver (iii) 5 speed transmission (V6 only). The fact that it was somewhat cheaper was nice, but did not matter. Having the 7th seat is nice, but of limited use, as only a skinny 8-12 years old could fit there...
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    I'm assuming that your mind is set to an auto transmission car, correct? If you are interested in fuel economy and your preference is auto, I would say that a 4cyl is better (of course if you are not carrying 5 adults 95% of the time).

    I have carried 5 adults, a baby on a car seat and a large stroller in the back of the 3rd row and have not felt a lack of power (I have a manual transmission however). I have done this only once in 2 years. Now, other Auto Tranny Mazda5 owners have said that the engine is not power out of this world but sufficient, even fully loaded (peppy enough as long as you are not intending to race it of course :))

    To me any V6 seems very economical when driving on pure highway, but the Rondo's V6 city MPG seems very low for the type of car. I read once (link below) that it was only around 15MPG? On my 2 years as a Mazda5 owner, we have gone from 22MPG (bad, hot day w/ full A/C city driving) to almost 34MPG (highway). Our avg is around 24-25MPG, 3 passengers.

    Now, as per choice, although it is just a family ride and both cars have very similar versatility, I prefer the Mazda5 as I love the Zoom-Zoom spice and the appealing look added to it.

    Some MPG stuff and reviews I found for both:

    KarenS, "Mazda5 Owners MPG-Real World Numbers" #, 22 Jul 2005 8:51 am

    Good luck!
  • renu_p, you might be interested in reading why I ultimately chose the Rondo in my post at Kia Forums. I required seven seats so the choice was clear, but it actually wasn't that easy of a decision because I was (and still am) quite fond of the Mazda5.

    If you're looking at these kind of vehicles, you're obviously concerned primarily about functionality. IMHO, the Rondo is more versatile when it comes to functionality and configurability compared to the Mazda5. The obvious reason for this is that the Rondo is capable of seating one more person than the Mazda5. Its 2-3-2 seating configuration gives you a few more options than the Mazda5's 2-2-2 configuration.

    For instance, if on average you will be carrying at most 5 people in your vehicle, the fifth person has to sit in the third row in the Mazda5. In the Rondo, the fifth person can choose his poison :)--be stuck in the middle of the second row or be stuck in one of the third-row seats. If you need additional cargo space, the fifth person can sit in the second row allowing the third-row seats to be stored away for more space. In the Mazda5, you would be able to store only one of the third-row seats for additional space.

    If, in your mind, the versatility is pretty much equal between the Rondo and Mazda5, then other considerations come into play. IMHO, the Rondo comes out ahead when considering the warranty (the 10-year/100,000-mile limited powertrain warranty is a killer) and safety (electronic stability control and traction control system are standard, which are not available for the Mazda5). The Mazda5, again IMHO, comes out ahead when considering resale value and performance/handling (available with a manual tranny, which is not available for the Rondo).

    If looks and image matter, the Mazda5 gets the nod over the Rondo, although that's not saying very much. There's no disguising the fact that these vehicles are what they are--utilitarian people movers.

    The Mazda5 also has sliding doors, which I consider a plus (and it should be considered a plus, because I'll say it again, these vehicles are primarily about functionality). Some people, however, seem to hate sliding doors due to its "soccer mom" look. If the Rondo does have an advantage over the Mazda5 in the looks department, I suppose this would be it. :)

    As for MPG, you should check out (if you haven't already) some of the real-world drivers' experiences with the Rondo at these threads:
    Kia Rondo, Real World MPG
    So what kind of mileage are people getting? (Kia Forums)
    Rondo fuel economy compared to goverment ratings (Kia Forums)

    BTW, coolmazda5 seemed to have found one of the few mostly negative reviews of the Rondo (i.e., his link to the KickingTires blog at For a comprehensive list of Rondo reviews, see here.
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Good details medicineman as usual, thanks. By the way, I thought my posted links were fair (good and bad) on both sides, not negative. I still believe that the V6 engine economy is misleading, but that is pretty much it :D.

    BTW, I won't post other non-Edmunds forums I frequently visit, as it is generally a Forums member's rule (do not promote external forums in your post)...

    renu_p, you seem to have a lot of info now, so happy shopping around!
  • I don't go so much by EPA estimates. I look more at vehicle curb weight for a better idea of how much fuel will be used.

    I can't comment specifically on the Rondo, but in general, when a particular vehicle is offered with a choice of either 4 cyl or V6 engines, because the weight is basically the same either way, you can get about the same gas mileage out of the V6 as long as you drive with a light foot.

    In other words, drive with a heavy foot in the V6 version, and you'll use more gas, simply because the V6 is CAPABLE of using more gas when pushed. But you'll also have the added benefit of better acceleration when needed and more pulling power when needed for larger loads because of the increased torque.

    Personally, I'd rather have the V6 because I'd like the larger reserve of power available, and the smoother, quieter running characteristics of V6 engines.

    I think in most driving you'll get the same gas mileage as the 4 cyl. You just have to train yourself not to take full advantage of the V6 power reserve unless you really need it.
  • andydicoandydico Posts: 12
    I agree, I had an 800cc Daewoo Matiz before my Mazda5 and compared it's gas mileage with a 1.0liter Kia Picanto. The Picanto has even better mileage than the Matiz simply because the 800cc Engine strains especially when loaded compared to the 1.0 liter Engine on the Picanto. Likewise, The 2.3l I4 engine on the Mazda5 is sufficient for 4passengers but more than that, I'd think a V6 is more efficient to handle the load. :shades:
  • Coolmazda5 wrote:
    By the way, I thought my posted links were fair (good and bad) on both sides, not negative. I still believe that the V6 engine economy is misleading, but that is pretty much it :).

    Just to clear up any misunderstanding, I was only referring to the review at the KickingTires blog. Plus, by "negative," I wasn't implying that the review was unfair, but that it ultimately didn't recommend the Rondo. That is what I mean by "negative review" when I've used those terms in any of my past posts (i.e., the review doesn't recommend the vehicle or the review is leaning in that direction, by my estimation).

    I've also noticed that you posted the KickingTires link several times before, as though it were some sort of "smoking gun" (and as I said before, it just happens to be one of the few "negative reviews" of the Rondo out there). If you're basing your belief about the V6 on just that one review, I suggest that you check some other reviews and other drivers' accounts (it just might contradict or even confirm your belief).

    BTW, I wasn't aware of the forum member's rules, but ignorance of the law is no excuse. ;) I'll keep my nose clean in the future. :)
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    4cyl vs 6cyl

    Seems to me that you'll get better mpg with the 4cyl, just like the 4cyl Accord and Camry get a lot better mpg by EPA estimates as well as real-world users (see posts on or Edmunds). No reason to think that the Rondo would perform any differently.

    The 6cyl is better if you know that you're carrying a heavy load all of the time ( have a big family!), but other wise, I'd just get the 4cyl.
  • Why don't we all just call a spade a spade. This thing is hideous and i wouldn't be caught dead driving a Kia. Seems most people posting here already made the mistake of buying one and they need to reassure themselves with a little chest beating about a v6 and 2cm more interior room. Sorry, last I checked this is a MAZDA 5 forum and I'm getting tired of seeing Rondo vs. Mazda 5, Rondo vs. Daewoo, Rondo vs. PooPoo. WHO CARES??? Let's see some relevant info on the Mazda 5. Can I hear an AMEN??
  • Sorry, last I checked this is a MAZDA 5 forum and I'm getting tired of seeing Rondo vs. Mazda 5, Rondo vs. Daewoo, Rondo vs. PooPoo. WHO CARES??? Let's see some relevant info on the Mazda 5. Can I hear an AMEN??

    Then check again. It is also linked to the Rondo forum.
    Oh and if anyone is need reassuring it seems to be you.
  • U R Right. Sorry if I offended anyone. Seriously.
  • ramblinramblin Posts: 29
    It's not a hideous looking car at all. Way too many cars you have to look at the name plate to tell what they are now.
  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    ramblin replied:
    It's not a hideous looking car at all. Way too many cars you have to look at the name plate to tell what they are now.

    I agree ramblin, it is difficult to tell what cars are now nowadays but, depending on how it looks, usually the first reaction is different:

    a) Wow, nice, What is it?
    b) Oh, geez, What the heck is that?

    This, of course, as other members have said earlier, it depends of the eyes of the beholder :surprise:
  • You know, I've always wondered why people like the things that they like. There always seems to be a general consensus on what's considered cool and what's not. But why is that? Is it inherently cool and good looking, or is this some sort of a herd reaction based on marketing, or is it something else?

    For instance, flared jeans made a comeback a few years ago (what people used to call bellbottoms back in the '70s) and everyone (for women, at least) who didn't wear flares suddenly looked out of date. Now, skinny-legged jeans are back in style and flares are a fashion faux pas. So how did flared jeans suddenly become unattractive to women? How did "Oh, those are so cool" suddenly become "Oh, those are so awful"?

    If something were inherently cool and attractive, you would think that it would always be so, but that rarely seems to be the case. So what, exactly, is driving the popular taste? Is something popular because a lot of people like it, or do a lot of people like it because it is "popular" (as defined, perhaps, by clever and persuasive marketing)? Are you really choosing what is attractive to you, or is it being chosen for you? And why do you feel apologetic whenever you go against what is cool when it isn't inherent or permanent in the first place?

    BTW, the questions are rhetorical, so only answer them if you guys are as crazy as I am. ;) Anyway, sorry for the extremely off-topic, self-indulgent, psychological BS (hope I didn't just break another forum rule), but you guys ought to be used to that coming from me by now. :)
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    This is an interesting topic, however, it sounds like you're asking in a general sense of likes/dislikes and not strictly about the Kia Rondo, Mazda5, or any auto for that matter. SO, I'm going to suggest that you start this as a separate discussion in the Off Topic Chatter forum. I have a feeling you'll get a lot of response from other members there. :)

    Edmunds Manager UGC Click on my screen name to send a personal message. Need help navigating? Check out Getting Started in Edmunds Forums.
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  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,870
    KarenS, there always has to be somebody who writes in to agree after you go to the work of suggesting people go elsewhere with a topic, huh?

    Actually, medicineman brings up some good points about what appears to be in style or what is not.

    I have noticed that with cars some people will only buy what they feel will be "safe". An example of this you may ask? In May of 1999 I bought a Kia Sephia. It looked better to me than either of it's competitors at that time, the Honda Civic and the Toyota Corolla. I liked it's looks better and I felt that Kia could build a competent car since they had been at it since 1944 and I liked a successful micro-car Kia built called the Ford Festiva.

    Now, did other people want the Sephia for it's different looks at that time? Most people want good resale value, hence, they'd get the Civic or Corolla. What was popular at that time? The Civic or Corolla were more popular, the Sephia had only been in America since 1995 and most people didn't know much about Kia and/or their Sephia.

    What pulled me in to want to comment was the notion that the thing that drives popularity often isn't even thought about. Civic or Corolla shoppers were told that the resale value of the Corolla and Civic was really good and that the cars were fairly reliable. The Civic and Corolla would cost you more then, yes. But to most of those buyers of Honda and Toyota the extra cost was well worth it. What are we really looking for in a rig, though?

    Did they do their research before buying? Don't think so with a lot of them. I'm just going by what I've read in publications and on the net.

    But those people's perception of the Japanese brands brought them to decide to buy the Civic or Corolla. Kia put out commercials at the time that were intended to start to change the perception about durability(example, the one where the college people took the Sephia and drive it 100,000 miles without problems, and attempted to beat up the car constantly).

    If someone liked the Sephia's looks more they might have decided against buying it then because Kia wasn't "proven." Things are much different and Kia has done well recently in quality tests and awards.

    The comment about "someone else choosing your car for you" has a lot of merit to it because I think that is what happens a lot in America. Thankfully there are car magazines and car web sites like this one where we can edumacate ourselves fully-completely about a potential car purchase and read early reviews on the car we like and know a lot more than we used to going in, eh? Excellent topic, medicineman! :D

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • Thanks for the kudos, iluvmysephia1. :) Our generous host KarenS is right, though--if I were a mod, even I would have given myself a gentle kick in the pants to keep things more relevant. After all, I'm the Cliff Clavin (anybody remember Cheers?) of the forums set and I tend to go off on tangents.

    I think the unspoken subtext to all of this is that the Rondo doesn't have that "wow" factor and the Mazda5 does. Sure, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but that's probably what the general consensus is. So the point of my last post, really, was to suggest that I don't think the Mazda5 is inherently any more dandy and purty, but that it conforms more than the Rondo to what is the fashion of the day--which is very fickle and driven largely by marketing (as per my jeans example, which I got from my nieces because I'm a real man and I wouldn't know about that stuff on my own). :D

    Of course, I'm only saying this because I own a Rondo; otherwise, why would I bother?
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,870
    my lead at Boeing used to refer to me as the King of Segway's, so...I'm very similar to you as far as that goes.

    Back to Rondo vs. Mazda5...I really am not in this market to buy but I do know how each of these vehicles looks. And after reviewing each of their looks I am once again in the Kia camp, liking the Rondo more. It has that "unique" look to it that Kia seems to have the talent to make. I mean that in a positive way! I won't start asking questions about each rig...I could go back and read up right here in this thread and learn a lot...but your post just struck a familiar vein in me and I wanted to participate in the thread to say "Hey, I know what he means there!"

    Enjoy your Rondo or your Mazda5, they both have way more merits than faults, huh?

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • coolmazda5coolmazda5 Posts: 525
    Undeterred, Honda will relaunch an updated version of the Stream in the US for ‘09 , says our source, but only a two-row version will be coming

    Honda means a serious contender. It also means more chances to keep the MAV market alive (Mazda and KIA alike) plus more options for us the consumers in the future :).

    Now, a 2 row seat version only? Based on all the buzz generated by the Mazda5 and the Rondo, it is clear that many people like the 3rd row availability in the US and Canada for these type of cars :confuse:
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    As this discussion is a comparison between the Rondo and Mazda5, please go to Future Vehicles to create a topic for Honda Stream.


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  • castg1castg1 Posts: 34
    What is the window seat per passenger ratio? The M5 is 1:1 one window seat per passenger.
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