2013 Mazda Mazda5 Performance
This performance review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.
Choosing the 2013 Mazda5 over other minivans means dealing with less interior space. In return, reviewers say that you get some of the most-engaging performance in the minivan class. According to most reviewers, the Mazda5 has zippy, athletic handling that puts other minivans to shame.
- "Consider the Mazda5's road manners icing on the automotive cake. While we doubt any driving enthusiast's first choice of vehicle would be a minivan, this people mover feels more nimble... than its larger, heavier rivals" -- Kelley Blue Book
Acceleration and Power
The 2013 Mazda5 has a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 157 horsepower. The Mazda5 is the only minivan that you can get with a manual transmission. A six-speed manual is standard and a five-speed automatic is option. The Mazda5 gets an EPA-estimated 22 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. That's the best fuel economy in the class.
Though they aren't blown away by its power, reviewers say that the 2013 Mazda5 has adequate pep for driving around town. Highway driving, several reviewers report, can highlight just how small the Mazda5's engine is, but most agree that the Mazda5 can handle highway driving, though you may spend a fair bit of time in the right lane.
- "Regardless of transmission, the 5 is responsive from a stop and in around-town driving. It falls just short of feeling quick, however. It's reasonably peppy on the highway too, though passing maneuvers require plenty of throttle input. The manual transmission is well-geared, delivering a good balance between overall acceleration and highway cruising. The automatic shifts smoothly and provides timely downshifts." -- Consumer Guide
- "Off-the-line acceleration is not the Mazda5's strength, but it redeems itself with its ability to hug corners and transmit road feel without compromising overall comfort." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Speed is another issue. The 5 seems to operate on its own schedule. Its 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine -- the Toyota Sienna is the only other minivan sold in the United States that offers anything other than a V-6 -- makes a meager 157 horsepower. That’s 10 less than the same-size engine in the Mazda 3, and the 5 weighs about 300 pounds more." -- New York Times (2012)
Handling and Braking
Reviewers say the best thing about the Mazda5's performance is the way it handles. They report that its small size make it feel quick and nimble around town, and that it can even be a bit sporty. A few reviewers point out that its ride isn't as smooth as other minivans, but others say it’s a price they're willing to pay for great handling.
- "Mazda 5 is surprisingly sporty. Grip is good and body lean is modest in corners. The responsive steering provides good road feel, and a tight turning circle aids in close-quarters maneuvering. Strong crosswinds induce a bit of wander, but nothing that we would consider excessive." -- Consumer Guide
- "Among the 2013 Mazda5's pragmatic highlights is its ease in parking lots. At nearly the same length - actually a smidge shorter - as the Mazda3 compact sedan on which it's based, the Mazda5 is a snap to maneuver." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Turn the steering wheel, and the front tires change path without delay. All the controls and responses are in harmony, making it easy (and fun) to wring the most out of the Mazda 5. When was the last time you wanted to wring anything but your own neck in a minivan?" -- Car and Driver (2012)
- "It's rather fun to throw around, thanks to responsive and communicative steering." -- Motor Trend (2012)