posted 6 years ago

New Mazda5 Inspires Wannabe Translators

The new Mazda5 is not only a practical seven-seater multi-purpose vehicle, it can also help wannabe translators master a new language.

The new Mazda5 is not only a practical seven-seater multi-purpose vehicle, it can also help wannabe translators master a new language. That is because this robustly constructed family taxi is based on the 'nagare' styling concept - 'nagare' meaning 'flow' in Japanese. See, you learn something everyday day.

The nagare theme, as previously seen on various concept cars, refers to the way wind and water flow across objects in nature. That's fair enough, I suppose, but what this means in reality is that the new Mazda5 has swirling lines dancing down its side. These are a reflection of (brace yourself) the 'emotion of motion', and in no way look like parking dents.

On the bright side, the new Mazda5 has sliding 'van style' rear doors that make access to the spacious cabin easy. On high-end Sport models these operate electrically and have sensors to stop the mechanism if, for example, a child's arm blocks its path. Also, the second and third row of seats slide forward, and fold flat, to allow the 5 to carry up to 1,525-litres of luggage. This falls to 112-litres if you keep all seven seats ready for a class of Japanese language students.

The new Mazda5 is available with one of three engines. The entry-level 1.8-litre 113bhp petrol unit propels the nagare themed bodywork to 62mph in 12.8 seconds, and averages 39.2mpg. Alternatively, the 2.0-litre 147bhp petrol model is faster, it hits 62mph in 11 seconds, and manages 40.9mpg – 1.7 more than its sibling. The final option is the 1.6-litre 113bhp diesel model, and this hits 62mph in 13.7 seconds and averages 54mpg.

The new Mazda5 is best perceived as a relaxing cruiser, rather than a sporty MPV such as the Ford Focus C-Max. This is not a major issue, after all it still travels from A to B without fuss - but some motorists may be disappointed by the amount of body roll. Most, however, will be happy enough as the light steering, slick transmissions, and smooth ride make it an easy car to like.

So, there we go. If you want an easy to live with, well equipped, and practical family car the new Mazda5 is worth serious consideration. Long live nagare!