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STYLING | 7 out of 10
the functionality of a minivan but without the minivan stigma
The 2009 Mazda 5 is largely unchanged
Mazda introduced the Mazda5 to the U.S. market in 2006, and the 2010 Mazda5 has changed little since then. Variously described as a multi-activity vehicle, a mini-minivan, and a space wagon, the Mazda5 looks sporty and offers room for six passengers in the footprint of one of Mazda's smallest vehicles.
Although from a few paces back the Mazda5 looks like a minivan, it does have a lower, slightly more rakish appearance. It would not be a stretch to call the Mazda5 a "sensibly sized wagon," in the words of ConsumerGuide, if you overlook its sliding rear doors. A good idea, the Mazda 2009 Mazda5's sliders "make loading passengers in tight parking spaces easy," reports Edmunds, attributing the feature to the Mazda5's European roots. Cars.com notes "the Mazda5 has a wedge shape that's characterized by a raked windshield and a relatively upright rear liftgate."
“Sensible” is a good way to sum up the interior design in the 2010 Mazda Mazda5. A large speedometer dominates the three-gauge cluster, and the gearshift is mounted on a center panel. Cars.com notes that the 2009 Mazda's "controls are sensibly arranged." The Mazda5 features electroluminescent gauges, which are lit day and night and especially easy to read, "along with rear sear air vents and controls [and] additional passenger flip-down armrests." The interior has “too many competing materials and surfaces, which gives it a disjointed and busy feel," laments the Edmunds reviewer.
Smaller than a minivan, yet more useful than most compact wagons, the 2010 Mazda Mazda5 puts function before form.