2012 Mazda MAZDA5 vs. Its Competition

2012 Mazda MAZDA5 4-door Wagon Auto Sport Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

With the other short-wheelbase minivans all gone, there really isn’t much competition for the 2012 Mazda5.

Of the compact crossovers, the one with the most minivan-like, cargo-versatile design is the Honda CR-V.

The CR-V is due for a complete redesign, as a late-introduction 2012 model.

Based on previous model year, the CR-V, while very safe and fuel-efficient (and comfortable), is by no means enjoyable to drive.

The Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen feels almost mid-size; plus, it handles well, and with the available TDI diesel engine it’s very fuel-efficient.

The new Toyota Prius v has hinged rear doors and only two rows of seating, but it feels very people-mover-focused like the Mazda5, also with a versatile seat-folding arrangement.

But the Prius v uses the same powertrain as the standard Prius, so it’s a bit more sluggish—and much more so than the Mazda5.

The Ford C-Max, slated to arrive sometime next year, will provide a spacious, tall-hatchback design as well, with a high-mpg hybrid powertrain; final U.S.

specs for this vehicle haven’t yet been announced, so check back for more details.

2012 Mazda MAZDA5 4-door Wagon Auto Sport Angular Front Exterior View2012 Mazda MAZDA5Browse Used Listings2012 Honda CR-V2012 Honda CR-VBrowse Used Listings2012 Toyota Prius V station wagon, Half Moon Bay, CA, May 20112012 Toyota Prius VBrowse Used Listings2012 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen2012 Volkswagen Jetta SportwagenBrowse Used Listings
Quick Specs
7.2
The nimble and fuel-efficient 2012 Mazda5 appeals to parents who don’t mind being seen in a minivan but don’t want to feel like they’re driving one.
7.8
The 2012 Honda CR-V is a great family vehicle, with a thoughtfully designed and comfortable interior, and improved refinement, but it lacks the confident, sprightly feel present in past CR-Vs.
The 2012 Toyota V wagon offers all the classic Prius hybrid virtues--low-speed electric running, top-of-class fuel economy, and interior space--in a super-sized package that still offers remarkable gas mileage ratings. We think it will do very well among Prius owners with families who need the extra space for people and stuff.
7.8
The 2012 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen isn't exactly like its sedan counterpart--it's noticeably smaller but nicer inside.
MSRP From   
$19,625$22,495$26,550$20,195
Gas Mileage   
21 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy44 MPG City / 40 MPG Hwy23 MPG City / 42 MPG Hwy
Engine   
Gas I4Gas I4Gas/Electric I4Gas I5
EPA Class   
2WD Minivan2WD Sport UtilityMidsize Station WagonSmall Station Wagons
Style Name   
4-Door Wagon Manual Sport2WD 5-Door LX5-Door Wagon Two (GS)4-Door Manual S
Drivetrain   
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity   
6555
Passenger Doors   
N/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style   
5 Door WagonSport Utility VehicleWagon4 Door
Transmission   
ManualAutomaticContinuously Variable RatioManual