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Like many of the models that find their way to our shores, over the course of the journey they lose their domestic nameplate and are rebadged to fit in with the automaker's local nomenclature. Say "hello" to the Premacy, or here in the U.S., the Mazda5.
Mazda has restyled its diminutive people mover and we can expect the same sheetmetal that graces the JDM version to make its way Stateside soon enough. Sporting a revised front fascia and new LED indicators embedded into the mirrors and taillights, the Mazda5 fits in better with its recently redesigned stablemates. The interior gets a few changes in color and fabric, while the revised suspension boasts both a smoother ride and more road-holding ability. Buyers abroad can opt for a standard two-liter four, a DISI four pot of the same displacement or a 2.3-liter four, mated to an electronically controlled five speed auto 'box driving the front wheels.
You can look over Mazda's full press release after the jump and gander at the restyled 5 in the gallery below.
Mazda Motor Corporation brings new depth to its Zoom-Zoom brand message with the world debut of the Mazda5 at the 2004 Paris Motor Show. Designed from the inside out for maximum comfort, convenience and enjoyment as the embodiment of the innovative "6 + One" packaging concept, the ambience throughout the cabin evokes conversation and communication among occupants. The Mazda5 also charms with its sophisticated, yet subtly stated body design that is pleasing to the eye, and its dynamic driving performance that is a pleasure to drive as part of one's daily lifestyle.
Aiming to establish a new standard for the space wagon segment
The space wagon segment is an important and growing segment in many markets around the world. Stephen Odell, Mazda's senior managing executive officer in charge of Global Sales, Marketing and Customer Service had the following to say. "In Europe, this segment has exploded in the past five years, growing in some estimations by more than 200 percent in the five largest markets. We think this is one segment where Mazda can definitely inject a little Zoom-Zoom."
Mazda debuted the MX-Flexa as a six-seat space wagon concept at the Geneva International Motor Show earlier this year. Originally built to demonstrate one possible direction for a future Mazda space wagon instilled with Zoom-Zoom, the MX-Flexa was so well received that it spurred the momentum to further develop the concept and ready the Mazda5 for release as a production vehicle.
The Mazda5 will certainly inject a dose of Zoom-Zoom into the space wagon segment. The development goal of combining maximum comfort and versatile practicality with driving enjoyment and responsive handling is explained by Kenichi Fukunaga, Mazda5 Program Manager.
"We conceptualized the Mazda5 as a 'communicative and dynamic space wagon'. The 'communicative' part of the product concept relates to the interface between the vehicle and users, and conveys the notion that the Mazda5 is rich in user-friendly practicality. It also conveys the notion that the Mazda5 enables passengers to interact with each other in comfort. And it conveys the promise of driveability that makes for natural-feeling interaction between the Mazda5 and the driver. Overall, it reflects the personality of a vehicle that, compared with other models released since Mazda adopted the Zoom-Zoom brand strategy, is more clearly focused on utility and passenger communication.
The 'dynamic' part of the product concept relates to high running, turning, and stopping potential and to innovative styling that was achieved without compromises in packaging efficiency. It's important to note that the Mazda5's performance characteristics are aimed mainly at balancing the need for brisk acceleration with handling that feels natural and feels reassuring to the driver and passengers. Mazda vehicles are developed to deliver easy, enjoyable driving, good maneuverability and overall comfort through excellent body control and damping, not the kind of performance that's measured only in terms of all-out, raw speed.
Finally, the 'space wagon' part of the product concept conveys the notion that all of these benefits are delivered in a roomy, space-efficient form."
Key to realizing the 'communicative' part is the introduction of a new "6 + One" packaging concept that aims to deliver maximum comfort for six occupants, plus an extra dimension of versatility and functionality. Included in this concept is the space established in the center of the cabin that promotes communication, even when the exchange is between the front and third row seats. The focus on delivering this comfort and convenience is why development proceeded from the inside out.
STYLISH AND CLEAN FROM THE INSIDE OUT
The Mazda5 design team's aim was to realize a fresh new "taste" in a design that is familiar and easy to grow fond of, but that continues to offer a fresh and well-balanced driving experience, even in constant daily use. The belief is that a space wagon built to satisfy all the daily needs of family use must deliver such a balance, and must appeal to a wide variety of customers. Another priority was to create a pleasing new utility design that broadens the appeal of Mazda's Zoom-Zoom brand strategy of stylish, insightful and spirited dynamic performance by taking it deeper into the realm of insightful engineering with a "stylish and clean" appeal.
"Stylish and clean" describes the proportions and balance that faithfully inherit the benefits of Mazda's brand DNA while achieving a fresh expression of subtle, sophisticated detailing in a design that places priority on delivering smart functionality. The design intentionally avoids flaunting or making an emphatic presentation, instead aiming to create a harmonious sense of presence that pleases in a manner that simply feels and fits the customer's lifestyle. The Mazda5 will be available in two distinct exterior design appearances that aim at addressing the product's global nature and the diverse needs of users in the respective markets where the product will be offered.
Particular attention was given to the flowing wedge shape, lean and sinewy solidness, and compact appearance that embody the "stylish and clean" concept.
The sweeping wedge shape of the low front nose section and stylish, flowing silhouette reveals the Mazda5's dynamic spirit. It is supported by a strong character line along the side of the body that runs from nose to tail and merges with the inconspicuous finish of the sliding door's center rail to accentuate the body's wedge-shaped profile.
The side of the Mazda5's body tucks in as much as possible at the rear for a solid and well-toned look and the roofline also slopes downward as it reaches the rear to complete the dynamic image while creating a compact look and a clean line that defies the roomy cabin space inside.
One of the available appearances packages reduces the apparent volume of the lower body and adds chrome-like accents to the front grille and headlamps for a smart look that emphasizes comfort and pleasing performance. In contrast, the second package incorporates side skirts and other elements that make the center of gravity appear lower, while the lamps are finished in a dark color that adds an expression of a nimble, more aggressively spirit.
The entire design team approached the new "6 + One" packaging concept by working relentlessly to deliver the highest possible quality and greatest comfort and ease of use for the driver and all occupants. The materials, colors, and design throughout the interior were given utmost attention so Mazda could deliver a new space wagon that customers will find pleasant to drive day in and day out, around town and on outings with family and friends.
The sedan-like design of the instrument panel and sweeping line of its upper section provide a natural feeling and clear field of view that even former sedan drivers will find immediately familiar and comfortable. The center of the dashboard is raised to position the controls concentrated on the center panel where the driver can easily reach them, as well as to improve their visibility and operation.
Interior detailing covers the finest points to enhance the finish and air of quality. For example, the simple and clean three-meter instrument cluster places a large speedometer with white back-plate in the center, and is designed for maximum visibility right down to details in relationship to the steering wheel's position.
Mazda5 will offer global customers a choice of two interior-trim packages. One features a light olive keynote color that creates a warm and relaxing atmosphere as well as look of quality throughout the cabin, with an aim on pleasing those who seek a smart looking interior the whole family will enjoy day after day. The other combines a black keynote color with cool silver accents on the center panel and elsewhere to create a balance that will appeal to those who appreciate a sleeker, more sophisticated or technical interior ambiance.
Packaging and Craftsmanship
The new "6 + One" packaging delivers maximum comfort to occupants of all six independent seats, plus an additional dimension of utility through intelligent design that realizes easy access, walk-through convenience, ample seating arrangements, handy storage space and practical yet visually pleasing appointments. Core to the whole concept is the open space created in the cabin's center that encourages and facilitates free and open interaction between all who ride in the Mazda5.
With an overall length of 4,505 mm (177 inch), width of 1,755 mm (69.1 inch) and 1,615mm (63.6 inch) height and 2,750 mm (108 inch) wheelbase, the Mazda5 manages to deliver the roomy comfort of a space wagon while limiting overall size. For reference, the length exceeds the compact Mazda3 five door model by just
85mm (3.35 inch), the height by 150 mm (5.91 inch); the width is the same on both cars. Despite the long wheelbase, the Mazda5 features a class-leading minimum turning radius of 5.3 meters, making it remarkably easy for any driver to maneuver in tight situations.
Mazda5 features large sliding doors on both sides are a first in this class. The doors open smoothly without requiring strength, and do not swing out too far, making it easy to operate in parking spaces and other tight locations. Features that make access to all seats very easy, even when loaded down with shopping bags, infants, or in other daily-life situations, include the wide sliding doors, the low and wide side steps, and one-touch third row walk-in mechanism.
Particular effort went to ensuring maximum headroom and legroom while providing a comfortably tall hip point for friends or family who sit in the third row seats. This included overcoming a number of challenges such as developing a low-profile fuel tank to realize a low, flat cabin floor without sacrificing fuel tank integrity or capacity for extended touring, as well as angling the rear roof pillar back toward the liftgate to add extra head clearance while improving the aerodynamic characteristics at the same time.
The second and third row seats can be easily arranged in a number of flexible patterns to allow maximum efficiency in the use of space. In addition to their long slide adjustment and reclining functions, the second row seats each feature a handy double-fold mechanism.
Design details to achieve maximum comfort include slide adjustment and reclining functions on the second row seats, and a flat floor design that ensures maximum legroom in both the second and third row seats. Folding down the second and third row seatbacks creates an expansive luggage area with a virtually flat floor.
In markets where offered, a karakuri seventh seat folds out from beneath the cushion of the left-hand second row seat to provide seating for a seventh passenger between the second row seats when the need arises. Alternately, a karakuri utility box stowed beneath the cushion of the right-hand seat in the second row can be folded out to occupy the same space when added utility is the priority.
To ensure usability and ease of accessibility, painstaking research that included attaching sensors to test subjects and running simulations of the human body's actual movement when opening/closing the door helped produce easy-to-operate sliding doors on both sides open to provide a full 700mm of breadth into which a parent can enter while carrying an infant. The walk-through cabin design and one-touch entry to the third row further add to the ease of access.
Another product of extensive testing, the new plastic liftgate with two-step stop mechanism maximizes operational ease for users of all heights and builds.
Furthering ease of use, the Mazda5 has an available advanced keyless system, a first for Mazda outside of Japan. The system employs a card-shaped device that one simply carries in a pocket or purse. When the holder comes within close proximity of the car, the card-shaped transmitter automatically communicates with the Mazda5's onboard system to allow the doors or liftgate to be locked or unlocked, and the engine started or stopped without inserting a key into a door or ignition keyhole. The system makes it convenient to enter the car when one's hands are encumbered with shopping bags, children, or other baggage.
The development team labored diligently to develop a smart new audio and entertainment systems with functionality and versatility that heightens the pleasure of riding in the Mazda5.
In markets where available, a newly developed hard disk drive (HDD) based audio system stores up to 3,000 of the user's favorite songs, the equivalent of 300 to 500 CDs! The system supports fast and easy searching for individual tracks by title, artist name, or genre for instant access to the music that suits the moment.
An available rear entertainment system includes a seven-inch LCD display and DVD player mounted on the ceiling that allows passengers in the second and third row seats to enjoy watching DVD movies, or to play CDs. Additionally, an auxiliary jack mounted in the third row seat trim makes it possible to connect a game machine, or a video camera for playback. A wireless remote control makes it easy for passengers in any of the second or third row seats to control the system and select a different song, movie chapter, change volume, etc.
Attention to detail readily seen in the quality of the seat, floor, and body designs is a testament to the development team's eagerness to have users experience the company's commitment to quality and finish the instant a door on the Mazda5 opened.
The fit and finish speaks of the determination to deliver high quality throughout, right down to the small clearance tolerances for panel matching. Of particular note is the unobtrusive smooth surface of the B-pillar between the front and sliding doors that is painted in the body color. Similarly, the ridge lines and tracks for the sliding doors create a straight, clean finish.
Additionally, clinical analysis of muscle movement when operating the transmission shifter led to the development of a center panel design that positions the knob at an optimum angle that makes possible operation without bending one's wrist.
DRIVING DYNAMICS THAT IMPROVE THE OWNERSHIP EXPERIENCE
While the achievement of interior comfort and versatility were priorities in Mazda5 development, even the space wagon that is ready to redefine the segment must deliver the signature Mazda driving dynamics of responsiveness, neutral handling and linear, controllable braking if it is to embody the full spirit of Zoom-Zoom.
Ensuring the responsive ride that the driver will desire are the 1.8-liter and 2.0-liter MZR series gasoline engines that have earned a reputation in the Mazda3 and Mazda6 for delivering the linear, lively and torquey power of Mazda's performance DNA combined with low fuel consumption and emissions. These four-cylinder, 16-valve DOHC engines have been tuned to deliver optimum performance in this new space wagon, and matched with a smooth action five-speed manual transmission. A four-speed automatic is also available in select markets.
Also available and specifically fine tuned for the European market is turbocharged 2.0-liter diesel engine with common rail injection and a new six-speed manual transmission matched to support the power output. Two versions-standard power and high power-will be offered. The engine was developed with the goal of delivering solid output, outstanding fuel economy, and a quiet ride with low NVH (noise, vibration and harshness). A new catalytic diesel particulate filter contributes to the overall great reduction in NOx and particulate matter emissions, virtually eliminates soot, and the lower fuel consumption reduces CO2 emissions. Another feature of the diesel engine is its quiet idling and quiet ride.
Engine specifications (for European market)
1.8L gasoline 2.0L gasoline 2.0L diesel
(Standard Power/High Power)
Type In-line 4-cyl. 16-valve DOHC In-line 4-cyl. 16-valve DOHC In-line 4-cyl. 16-valve DOHC, turbocharged
Displacement cc 1,798 1,998 1,998
Bore x Stroke mm 83.0 x 83.1 87.5 x 83.1 86.0 x 86.0
Max. output (target) (EEC) kW (PS)/rpm 85 (115)/6,000 107 (145)/6,000 81 (110)/3,500 105 (143)/3,500
Max. torque (target) (EEC) Nm (kg-m) /rpm 161 (16.4)/4,000 182 (18.6)/4,500 310 (31.6)/2,000 360 (36.7)/2,000
Emission rating (target) Euro Stage IV Euro Stage IV Euro Stage IV Euro Stage IV
Building on the proven architecture of the Mazda3 that earned high acclaim worldwide, the suspension of the Mazda5 is optimally tuned to produce a ride that occupants in all seats will find comfortable and particularly well balanced and damped. MacPherson struts in the front and a multi-link suspension in the rear help suppress the roll so widely observed in space wagons due to the relatively tall body height and large shift in load.
Mazda5 is equipped with Mazda's electronic hydraulic power assist steering system (EHPAS). Ventilated disc brakes in the front and solid discs in the rear ensure positive response along with unrivaled stability and control. This high level of basic brake performance is representative of Mazda's brand DNA, and realizes the outstanding stability required to make a space wagon perform to its potential.
Every detail of the body was optimized to realize the rigidity needed for a comfortable ride with minimal NVH as well as solid footing on the road at all times, despite the wide openings for the sliding side doors and large liftgate in the rear.
Active and Passive Safety
Mazda's own highly rigid, collision-safe Mazda Advanced Impact Distribution and Absorption System body is greatly evolved to match the characteristics of the Mazda5's space wagon body design. The outstanding level of crash safety achieved was subjected to strenuous testing under conditions more severe than the regulations and standards of each market, with the goal being not only excellent scores in standardized tests such as NCAP or Euro NCAP, but also an ability to ultimately protect passengers in the wide and unpredictable variety of real-world accidents.
The airbag supported supplemental restraint systems add an extra measure of protection for all occupants, from the front and side airbags for the driver and front seat passenger, to a new available air bag curtain large enough to protect those sitting in all three rows of seats.
On the active, Zoom-Zoom side of safety, the Mazda5's advanced safety systems include a four-wheel anti-lock braking system (4W-ABS) with electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) system, and Mazda's own dynamic stability control (DSC) system.
Mechanical brake assistance boosts the brake pedal force applied by the driver in the event of an emergency to ensure a shorter stopping distance.
The driver is also well positioned to assure clear visibility by minimizing blind spots and maximizing the view through the side windows, making pedestrians, small children and the likes easier to spot.
THE ZOOM-ZOOM SPACE WAGON
The Mazda5 is about to redefine the space wagon segment with its unprecedented comfort, functionality, cabin utility and driving pleasure. The overall package is so compelling that users will ask themselves why they would drive a space wagon unless it offered the added practicality and fun of a Zoom-Zoom space wagon from Mazda.
Mazda5 specifications (for European market)
Dimensions Overall length 4,505mm (177 inch)
Overall width (with side protectors) 1,755mm (69.1 inch)
Overall height 1,615mm (63.6inch)
Wheelbase 2,750mm (108 inch)
Track (front/rear) 1,530mm/1,520mm
(60.2 inch/59.8 inch)
Seating capacity 7 (5 seats model available)
Engine Type 1.8L & 2.0L gasoline/ 2.0L diesel
Transmission Type 5-speed manual (with gasoline)
6-speed manual (with diesel)
Suspension Type (front/rear) MacPherson strut/
Brakes Type (front/rear) Ventilated discs/discs
Tires & wheels 195/65R15 with 15x6J
205/55R16 with 16x6 1/2J
205/50R17 with 17x6 1/2J
NOTE: This information reflects preliminary specifications and was correct at the time of going to print. However, Mazda policy is one of continuous product development. The right is reserved to change these details at any time.