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Mazda MX-Flexa / Mazda5



  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    Front pic:



    Might require registration, it's pic 30 in that album. Here's a close up of the rear badge:



    Interior has cavernous head room:



    But the seats seem mounted a bit low. Door opens wide to load kids.


  • lazyfoxlazyfox Member Posts: 90
    You are forgeting one thing. The 5/new Premacy is ment to replace both the MPV and Premacy in markets out of NA. That was the main purpose of the vehicle, the NA market is just sidefield they decided to go into (Premacy was not sold in NA before). All makes sense as for the new 06/07 MPV will grow in size and the 5 will perhaps capture the niche market of people who think that it is too much for their need. I'd say that 5 is in the same class as the Pacifica.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    It looked a bit smaller, mostly in terms of width. The 5 may be as long and possibly even taller, but I bet it's a lot more narrow. That may be why we won't see 3-across seating.


  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    The Mazda5 is the same width as the Mazda3, and exactly three inches narrower than the MPV.


    Good point.


    I'm seeing the 5 as a taller, longer Mazda3 wagon with a lot more flexibility for cargo.


    Which is what's getting me so excited.


    Get to know me; you'll like me, I promise!!!


  • starlightmicastarlightmica Member Posts: 58
    I'd say that 5 is in the same class as the Pacifica.


    Capacity wise, yes. The Pacifica is 1000lbs heavier, though - one preview described the M5 as the Pacifica gone on the Atkins diet.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Member Posts: 3,469
    At 1,000 lbs less than a U.S. Odyssey the JP version is hardly full sized.


    "You want a full-sized Mazda minivan with a bench seat in the middle? GO BUY AN MPV!!!"


    That would be hard since the MPV does not come with a 3 person bench in the middle.


    The 6 wagon does not weigh 400 lbs more than the sedan. The difference is about 140 lbs. hardly enough to even notice.
  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    Does anyone knows when will see this baby in dealer's showrooms?.

    It is listed as a 2006 model...should expect fall of 2005 in showrooms?

    Somebody mentioned Pacifica and M5 in the same class.

    It's a little too much exaggerated.

    Price wise and specs wise ( size,weigh, engine size), Pacifica is almost 50% more waste.
  • audia8qaudia8q Member Posts: 3,138
    mid to late summer
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    This discussion is on the "Today's Top Discussions" list! Who would have thought that a car that got so little coverage at NAIAS would generate so much disucssion traffic?


    I was just down to NAIAS as well -- the fold out brochure was kind of neat but didn't contain much info that we don't already know. Visibility looks poor out the rear quarter windows.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    Can anyone find a link to the source of that picture Starlightmica posted? I'd like to see a clearer image of the size of the 3/5/MPV.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    "That would be hard since the MPV does not come with a 3 person bench in the middle."


    Ooops! I saw the following photo and thought the captain's chairs in the second row could be slid together to make a bench -- kind of the same way of "faking" a bench as the non-US Mazda5's "plus one" pseudo-seat. I thought that might satisfy you "gotta hava bench in the 2nd row" types. Oh well, there is a by-gosh bench in the third row.




  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    I've read (in several places, all authored by Mazda) that the Mazda5's rear hatch is made of an "all-new plastic" material and that it has two user-selectable stops for how far up it goes when you open it.


    Anybody know anything about this "plastic hatch"? Are we talking Saturn here, as in impact-absorbing? Why plastic? To keep weight down, I guess?


    I sure hope the rear window isn't plastic too, lol!


  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    On that third row:


    "Let's start with the most obvious question of how much of a third seat can fit in a car of this size: It's a real seat where two real-sized people with real legs can sit without complaint for a cross-town trip and then back again. The second row's bucket seats feature adjustable seatbacks and armrests, and each slides fore-and-aft independently to equalize legroom with third-row passengers. All seating positions feature adjustable headrests and 3-point safety belts."


    (My translation of the "without complaint for a cross-town trip" line is, "While the third row is adequate for adults for short hauls, I wouldn't stick 'em back there for that four-hour jaunt to grandma's."


    On cargo space:


    "Each seatback folds down flat in a single move and without having to remove the headrests. With everything folded, there's a flat 5-foot-long cargo floor. Each seatback can fold independently, allowing a wide variety of passenger and cargo combinations."


    On storage:


    "Since your car often becomes a home away from home, you often find yourself needing mobile versions of a junk drawer, filing cabinet, toy box, music shelf, maybe even a vanity. The Mazda5 is ready, starting with a large permanent storage space under the cargo floor by the rear hatch that is perfect for tools, emergency supplies or anything you wish to keep concealed. Under the first-row console cover is both a shallow storage tray and a deep storage bin ideal for CD storage. The glove box is deep, and there are eight cup holders throughout the cabin, plus a juice-box holder.


    "Touring models feature a second-row seat cushion that flips forward to reveal a storage box as well as a unique fold-out tray, complete with cup holders and deep storage space."


  • wheelz4wheelz4 Member Posts: 569
    Odman...check out the Mazda Canada site under their "Upcoming Vehicles" section for lots of info on the Mazda5 including that comparison photo with the 3 and the MPV.

    and re: Top Discussions....maybe there's more US interest (although I realize some of us posting here are Canucks!) than we first thought!
  • wheelz4wheelz4 Member Posts: 569
    Anybody find any towing specs for the 5? All I need to pull is a very light (750 lbs) circa 1965 pop-up camper. If Mazda goes the "not recommended for towing" route with the 5, I may be forced into a short-wheelbase GM van or the MPV.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    Mazda USA's website says the Mazda5 will have an "available four-speed Sport AT automatic transmission". That implies 5-speed will be standard, does it not?


  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    on link you provided it says:"Transmission options are a five-speed manual or four-speed Sport AT automatic with manual shift mode"

    Standard, as in the most cases, will be the 5 spd manual, and available ( as an ec$tra option), the 4 ATX.

    I kinda see for 2007 and above, a 5 speed automatic STANDARD, due to poor demand for the manual ( on this kind of vehicle)
  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    indeed, it's not sheet metal. I checked "live" @ NAIAS.

    Nissan Murano's imposing liftgate is also "plastic" kind made of.

    I guess weight is the main reason and also sheet metal stamping that is impossible or very expensive for sheet metal panels with awkward geometry.
  • robr2robr2 Member Posts: 8,805
    It's probably plastic due to:


    weight - many people complain about the weight of tailgates and the force needed to close them


    cost savings - in case you don't know, steel costs have risen dramatically in the past 18 months affecting many products including automobiles.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    ... as long as I know two things:


    1. It will protect me in a rear-ender, and


    2. It won't shatter in cold weather!!!


    You might find that last one funny, but I recently saw a Saturn that had been involved in a relatively minor accident during a single-digit cold snap we got here in Virginia. The driver's side door was shattered into shards like a piece of glass and it hardly got hit.


  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    since I went back only about 80 posts, but IMO, 3 omissions will likely keep me from buying the M5: no 5-sp auto, no AWD option, and no V6 option. Maybe they're be there by 2008 MY?
  • stickguystickguy Member Posts: 49,200
    5 speed AT possibly, Awd maybe, V6 no way (IMO).


    If they dropped it off with the mazdaspeed turbo 4 and 6 speed 9what's supposed to show up in the MS3), I would be there tonight. Hot dog!


    I would have to see how usable it is, but having the +1 seat for emergency use would be nice.

    2020 Acura RDX tech SH-AWD, 2023 Maverick hybrid Lariat luxury package.

  • dudleyrdudleyr Member Posts: 3,469
    "3 omissions will likely keep me from buying the M5: no 5-sp auto, no AWD option, and no V6 option."


    Different strokes - any one of those three things on the 5 would keep me from buying it.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    Just curious, but why? To keep costs, or weight down, or both? The 4 banger with 157 hp concerns me, because the CR-V only seats 5, and has 160hp, and is still no ball of fire. And I think AWD would make it truly a Swiss Army Knife family hauler.
  • groovypippingroovypippin Member Posts: 264
    I think its just incredibly annoying to read all these comments about how that Mazda5 should be bigger, more powerful and more expensive. Buy a regular sized minivan is you want something bigger, more powerful and more expensive.


    This is MEANT to be a small, economical, versatile vehicle. Mainly for use in urban and suburban settings. Mainly for young families or older, empty nesters.


    The thing will sell like hotcakes exactly how it is in Canada. Stop trying to screw it up by asking Mazda to make it into a Dodge Caravan.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    Chill, man. These are discussion forums, so you're going to get different opinions, which will include "wish lists". Not everyone will look at a car, and say "that's exactly what I want. Don't change a thing". To paraphrase you, if I may, "if you don't like it, don't read it!"
  • dudleyrdudleyr Member Posts: 3,469
    Yes to keep costs and weight down. The AWD will add weight and slow the vehicle down, as will the automatic. The V-6 would get worse mileage than the Sienna and Odyssey minivans (judging by the Mazda 6) with much less room. A slightly more powerful 4 could work though.


    If you want more pep get the manual tranny, no need for the v-6.
  • subearusubearu Member Posts: 3,613
    Mazda has the MS6 coming with AWD and they might just do the MX-CrossSport. So, having the Mazda5 with AWD might not be their intentions. Perhaps even the next MPV will have AWD.


    Keep in mind Honda doesn't offer AWD on the Ody and Chrysler dropped AWD from their minivans as well. That might be driving some of the decisions Mazda is making on the MPV and Mazda5.


  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    "The V-6 would get worse mileage than the Sienna and Odyssey minivans"


    You think so? Those are significantly bigger and heavier vehicles. I figure the 4 banger, having to struggle to move the M5, would also not get great mileage.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Member Posts: 3,469
    The M5 weighs about the same as the M6, so I don't think the 4-cyl will struggle.


    The Sienna is 19/26 Odyssey is 20/28. The 6 wagon is 19/26 for 2004, but I just noticed that it improved to 20/27 for 2005. Better, but still large minivan territory.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    Hmmm... so what gives? The 6 wagon is more aerodynamic and lighter than the 2 maxivans. Short gearing in the 6 wagon? Or is the Ford Duratec 6 that inefficient?
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    ... the "minivan" appearance of the vehicle with nothing to compare its size with in the photos, and ...


    the possibility that some of you have not driven the Mazda3S wagon with the 2.3-liter 4-cylinder with variable valve timing that will be the same powerplant in the Mazda5.


    Guys and gals, this thing is the same size as the Mazda3 wagon except for being a few inches taller and a few inches (like 3) longer. Making a vehicle a few inches taller does not grossly affect its weight. But we've all seen the weight difference, right?


    My dealer let me take a 3S wagon home for a weekend last May. Let me tell you, that thing was a ROCKET! It's quite a bit larger than my 2000 Protege ES with 5-speed transmission, yet while I've always thought my Protege was pretty nimble, this thing was almost uncontrollably fast when you floored it off the line! I had a blast (literally) just creaming everyone at stoplights that weekend. (Poor soul who finally bought the car didn't know it was well broken-in, huh?)


    You know, foreign markets are only going to get a 2.0 for their largest engine in the Mazda5, and they're even going to be offered a sluggish diesel. We're getting the zoom-zoom version. I suggest witholding your worries about power until you actually get to test-drive one, which I hear may be as early as early summer (I hear now that it may be released over here as a mid-2005 model.)


    If you've ever looked under the hood of a 3S, and then realize the engine compartment will be virtually the same in the 5, I think you'd agree that there's no way in Hiroshima they could fit a V6 in there. This is NOT a big minivan -- it's a subcompact car with lots of versatility!


    At this point there's only one thing Mazda could do to stop me from buying one of these later this year.


    Bring the Verisa over here.




    Man, if Mazda brought that to North America, Mini would be having a real run for its money! Come on, Mazda!!!


    (Actually, I read an interview yesterday where a guy from Mazda North America said Mazda is thinking about making the Verisa its next "global platform" car, which would give it a *chance* of showing up in the U.S. But I'm not holding my breath, unfortunately. The car is already in the UK and getting rave reviews. What a cute little car. But it ain't the 5, so I'll shut up now!)


  • wheelz4wheelz4 Member Posts: 569
    Would love to see the Verisa here too. Would buy it in a heartbeat over an Echo or any of the sub-Civic/Corolla size models. Would be a good fit for anyone who wants a Mazda hatchback but can't pony up the 20 grand (CDN) to get into a Mazda3 hatch.

    Back to the "5"...gas mileage is a big consideration, as is price. If you're asking someone to give up the power, space etc. of a regular-size minivan to get them into a smaller, more efficient multi-passenger vehicle, both the price and the fuel-economy had better be pretty attractive. I wonder,though, as a Mazda6 with the 2.3/Auto combination is rated at 27/37 miles per (Imperial) gallon, which isn't substantially better than the much larger, heavier, more powerfull V6 Toyota Sienna @ 23/34. Even the V6 Mazda6 with the new 6 speed auto is rated at 24/36. Methinks the "5" needs a 5 speed auto at the least. (and a diesel option would be nice too)
  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    steel cost is not a main issue for replacing steel panels with "plastic". Compared to the overall weight of a vehicle, the Class A sheet metal weight is insigniffiant.

     Trucks are becoming more and more steel heavier, despite high steel cost.

     Aluminum , more expensive then steel though, is becoming a steel substitute for more and more major components- from suspension and cradles, to engine blocks and hoods. Reason: reducing weigh, and improving mpg.

    Mazda 5's liftgate is "plastic" mainly because stamping a sheet metal of that shape, is very costly or sometimes impossible to perform due to material properties.

    Is not the sheetmetal, anyway, that mainly provides the safety of a vehicle. It's what's underneath..

  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    Yes, worse then Sienna and Ody if they'll use the M6 -V6 engine.

    In real world M6 Wagon for example has the mpg worse then a Caravan, which is "significantly bigger and heavier".

    Even MPV, with a smaller engine and smaller size minivan then Caravan, has a poor mpg record.

    VVT is still too prohibited for Mazda? ( actually Ford?)

    Instead , the M3 engine is great on performance / mpg ( with VVT of course, made in Japan Mazda engine). That's a perfect engine for the M5, IMO.

  • mazdafunmazdafun Member Posts: 2,329
    ...or whatever they want to call it over. :)


    Just leave that whacked-out central stack in the MX-Micro concept out. I'd prefer a "conventional" layout, which I can use without having to look closely at it every time (and allows me to easily swap in aftermarket audio gear).
  • josh28josh28 Member Posts: 14
    Can anyone describe how they'd classify the Mazda5 after seeing it in person? I know it about 6 inches taller than the 3 and about 5 inches shorter than the MPV. In person, does it look like a small minivan or a tall wagon (like a tall Matrix or Forrester)?


    I've seen the pictures on and the nice flash comparison on but I can't get a sense of what it really looks like.
  • odmanodman Member Posts: 309
    Hi Josh28:

    I saw it at NAIAS, but since it was up on a rotating platform, it was hard to get a true picture of what it would be like on the street. However, to me it looks more like a tall sport wagon than a minivan. Minivans look big and bulky. This seemed sleek and nimble. To me it looked more like a slightly larger Matrix than a shrunken minivan. It's actually a lot like the old Nissan Axxess, but much more modern looking. The sporty tailights, aggressive front end and minimal overhang all helped.


    If Mazda had done it with swing out doors instead of sliders, fewer people would be thinking of it as a minivan.
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    Yep, a 5-sp auto would maximize both the power of the 4 banger and fuel economy. Perhaps there is space restriction in fitting a 5-sp unit?


    BTW, why did the 2.3 lose a few ponies from its application in the M3?
  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    But why all the need for a 5-speed automatic? I've never seen this type of feature become a make-or-break point in buying a car. It wasn't that long ago that 3-speed automatics were the norm and 4-speeds were special. Heck, my wife's 1995 Cavalier (don't worry, it was replaced by a Protege5 in 2002) had a 3-speed automatic.


    In my opinion, if you want the versatility of a 5-speed, get a 5-speed manual! There's no reason not to ... the car will cost about $900 less, it will be sportier, it will probably get better gas mileage, it will be more reliable, and it will weigh less!


    (And if your reasoning is more along the lines of, "But I can't drive a 5-speeeeeed!!!!", then I'll say, after my original WAHHHH!!!! response, it ain't THAT hard to learn!)


    Heck, my dad drove me over to pick up my first car when I was 20. It was a 5-speed Toyota Corolla (a canary yellow '78 with a vinyl top, btw!!!). He let me out of his car and said he had to go back to work. "BUT I CAN'T DRIVE A STICK!!!" I wailed. His response?


    "You'll figure it out."


    Know what? I sure did! And I liked it so much, I've been clutchin' along ever since.


  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    Mazda is following the same uninspired marketing like they did with the new 00 MPV, offering a basic 2.5L engine on a minivan, which was discontinued after 3 years due to lack of demand.

    To have a 5 spd ATX vs 4 spd ATX, does not require too much extra space under hood. Jetta- smaller then M5- has a 5spd ATX and 6spd manual.

    Adding and extra gear is a little bit more expensive. But you get better mpg and smoother riding, which many customers would trade for a few extra hundred buck$$.

     When you're thinking they'll offer 5 spd manual as standard and 4 Auto as optional for NA markets, I believe the same under marketed product will follow. Again, we're talking NA markets, in which 90% of the potential buyers of M5 will associate this product to a ( automatic transmission) mini-minivan. Let the Vibe / Matrix have 4 spd auto - as small wagons.


    2.3L loses a few ponies from its M3 application because of different weights. It's purely physics :))

     Look at the same engines, different HP's in the Rav 4 vs Camry 4 cyl, Jetta vs Passat, Murano vs Quest... And anyway, those extra 3-5 ponies does not make too much of a difference.

  • mdaffronmdaffron Member Posts: 4,421
    That 4-speed auto is a tiptronic.


    Also, this is a compact car with an ~$18,000 starting price, not a $25,000 Camry or Accord. What other small cars have 5-speed automatics?


  • qbrozenqbrozen Member Posts: 32,415
    But why all the need for a 5-speed automatic?


    because 5-speed auto is becoming the standard and mazda can't afford to fall too far behind.


    heck, now that they are offering a 6-speed auto in the mazda6, anything less than 5 just looks strange in their lineup, IMHO.

    Fairly steady: '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '13 Fiat 500c, '21 WRX, '20 S90 T6, '22 MB Sprinter 2500 4x4 diesel, '97 Suzuki R Wagon; '96 Opel Astra; '08 Maser QP / Rotating stock, but currently: '92 325i, '97 Alto Works, '11 Mini Cooper S

  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    it is the competition that's driving the technological performance to always improve.

    I might ask then why the need for a CVT , when not long ago, 5 spd Auto was the norm :))


    NA auto market is by a large margin an auto-transmission preferred amongst customers.

    Go to Europe, and they'll be ecstatic over the new 6-7 spd manual transmission just coming out of the production line of hi-tec brands like Audi, Peugeot, Renault, BMW.
  • jgriffjgriff Member Posts: 362
    If Mazda had done it with swing out doors instead of sliders, fewer people would be thinking of it as a minivan.


    Ding, ding, ding...Bingo right on the nose. Plus it really, really looks like nothing more than a scaled down MPV.
  • dan bitmandan bitman Member Posts: 158
    Jetta's 2005 auto tranny is a 5 speed tiptronic.

    Not to mention the hybrid Civic, Prius or Escape versions with a CVT transmission.

    And there' re more 5 spd auto /CVT standard to come sooner then later, I am sure.

    Back to M5, if launched in the US/CANADA as a 2006 model year with a manual 4 spd as standard , a 4 ADULT seater mini-minivan ,this will be like killing the baby on delivery,IMHO.

    I guess we all LOOVE this baby too much and wish him all the best!!
  • bodble2bodble2 Member Posts: 4,514
    Part of the reason as as qbrozen has posted. You can't go and say that it used to be like this, or like that, not too long ago. Heck, Toyota used to have a 2-sp auto in the Corolla in the '70's. So is a 3-sp OK for the M5 then?!


    And aside from that, it is simply a fact that a 5-sp will better utilize the available power. Especially since this motor is not exactly a powerhouse. I think this is the same reason why Honda went to a 5-sp auto for the CR-V.
  • groovypippingroovypippin Member Posts: 264
    on this board and all all auto boards is thinking the general public has the same level of knowledge, understanding or interest in cars as we do.


    Thusly, Dan Bitman's statement:


    "Back to M5, if launched in the US/CANADA as a 2006 model year with a manual 4 spd as standard , a 4 ADULT seater mini-minivan ,this will be like killing the baby on delivery,IMHO."


    is going waaaaaaaaaay too far. In our market, the Mazda5 will mainly be purchased by retirees and empty nesters. I can assure you that they do not give a flying fig whether the car has a 4 or 5 speed automatic transmission. They don't want a V6 because gas is expensive here. And they don't want a bunch of cutting edge, foo-foo options that needlessly drive the price up.


    I know we all look at Mazda as an enthusiasts brand, but the Mazda5 is not a sports car or even a "sports van". It is what it is.
  • groovypippingroovypippin Member Posts: 264
    its everyone's turn to shoot down my suggestion!


    So, what does everyone think about a diesel option for this vehicle.


    I think the Mazda5 is the perfect vehicle for Mazda to offer its first diesel engine option for North America. Great fuel economy, excellent low end grunt and not quite the same need for maximum zoom zoom in this class of vehicle.


    I know that the federal government (both in US and Canada)is bringing in new, low sulphur diesel regulations which may finally clean up the crappy quality diesel fuel supply on this continent. Is it possible that this will allow manufacturers to sell diesel vehicels that still meet new emission requirement? I hope so.


    Who else here might be interested in a diesel for the Mazda5?
This discussion has been closed.