Motorist Car Buyer's Guide - Mazda 5

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For families looking to buy a spacious and comfortable people-mover, is the solution a third-generation Mazda 5?

It’s a strong maybe. This was the last generation of the Mazda 5, released right before the crossover craze took over the car market for the years that followed. Changes in consumer preferences meant that MPVs such as the Mazda 5 were no longer in demand, leading Mazda to axe the lineup in 2018. But where does this leave those who still want an MPV instead of a Grande SUV? Well, a used Mazda 5 might just be the answer.

What is this?

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This is a third-generation Mazda 5, which was released in 2010 and brought into Singapore by Eurokars in 2012. This means that a majority of the Mazda 5s in our market are the post-2013 Skyactiv variants, giving you greater fuel efficiency.

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While the Mazda 5 was released with a multitude of different engine and transmission options, we only received those configured with a 2.0L petrol engine and an automatic transmission. This 2015 Mazda 5 was loaned to us by Ideal Automobile, who we thank for their support. You can view their listing of this Mazda 5 on Motorist’s Used Car platform here!

Is it any good (on the wallet)?

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If you're concerned about reliability, fear not as owners have stated that the Mazda 5 is an extremely reliable car. Those who drive the 2.0L petrol variants report no issues with the car, and it has never been recalled by Mazda. If there’s a car that embodies the reliability and durability of Japanese cars, it's the Mazda 5.

That said, regular maintenance is still important. Mazda recommends that regular servicing be carried out once every 12,000km or six months, and a more thorough servicing involving inspecting brake lines and tightening nuts and bolts once every 48,000km or two years.

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Additional maintenance such as the engine coolant should be replaced once every 96,000km or five years, and the air filter should be replaced once every 40,000km or two years. Maintain your Mazda 5 regularly and it’ll run smoothly and reliably for years to come.

If you're on a budget, you'll be glad to hear that buying a third-generation Mazda 5 will set you back anywhere from $30,000 to $80,000, depending on the mileage and the number of years left on the COE. At this price range, not many cars this reliable and practical come close.

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As for running costs, given that the Mazda 5 is powered by a hefty 2.0L engine, expect to pay a premium on the road tax. Thankfully, it’s still a relatively new car, putting its road tax at a manageable $1,120 per year. Considering the reliability and practicality you’re getting, the road tax seems justified.

For a car that seats six passengers, you definitely won’t be disappointed by the Mazda 5’s 11.0 km/l fuel consumption. While it doesn’t deliver hybrid-level figures, do realise that it’s a full-size MPV with a 2.0L engine — 11.0 km/l is more than decent.

Is it comfortable inside?

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It’s all plastic fantastic inside the Mazda 5, with every piece of interior trim being made from cheap polymers. That said, the front cabin is extremely comfortable to sit in. There is plenty of space to move around and put things, making you feel like you’re in a room rather than in a car. Visibility is also great, with big front windows allowing you to manoeuvre this rather large car safely.

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The second row of seats are also comfortable, with rear air-conditioning available. A party trick from the Mazda 5 is that while it has sliding doors like any other MPV, the doors are electrically powered. This means that your passengers can easily hop in and out of the car at the press of a button, either using the one on the door or the one controlled by the driver. 

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Moving the rightmost seat (the ‘1’ in ‘6+1’) allows you access to the third row of seats, which is what will attract drivers who want a bigger car. They’re barely seats, however, being extremely small and claustrophobic. But smaller kids should feel fine sitting here, with cupholders being a plus point.

Can it carry a lot of cargo?

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The Mazda 5 really puts the ‘Multi-Purpose’ in MPV. If you fold the second-row seats down, you create a large cargo area, meaning that buying new furniture from IKEA won’t require renting out a van. While this model has Captain's Chairs-esque seats in the second row, some models do come with simpler second-row seats that fold down flat for even more space.


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(Photo Credit: BMW)

Going continental, the BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer is a decent and popular choice for those who want a German car with three rows of seats. There are plenty of them on Singapore’s roads, and there are diesel options as well.

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(Photo Credit: Toyota)

The Toyota Wish is also another popular choice for an MPV, even having served as a taxi for a few operators in the early 2010s. It’s reliable and cheap to maintain, with spare parts readily available — not that you would need it.


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Even with two worthy alternatives, the Mazda 5 stands out for its powered sliding doors, which are extremely convenient for those who want a more comfortable boarding experience for their passengers. Only luxury MPVs that cost much more have them as standard, making the Mazda 5 value-for-money.

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The Mazda 5, like the other MPVs in its class, was one of the last few MPVs to be produced before manufacturers decided to move forward with oversized SUVs. With immense reliability and practicality, buying a Mazda 5 is the solution for families looking to buy a spacious and comfortable people-mover.

Motorist would like to extend our thanks to Ideal Automobile for loaning us their Mazda 5 for this article.

Photo Credits: Maximilian Oh (@mexsimilien)

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