Mazda MPV alternatives
Latest model: Mazda MPV ES 2004
The Mazda MPV was replaced for 2000 with a front wheel drive LW platform based on the 626. This second generation Mazda MPV was much more conventional, with sliding back doors and front-wheel drive. Some differentiating factors included a back bench that folded flat into the floor and rear-door windows that rolled down.
Mazda MPV comparison:
Mazda MPV details:
The Mazda MPV was initially reviewed as underpowered, using the Mazda AJ (which was actually Ford's Duratec) 2. 5 L V6, an motor intially developed by Porsche before it was sold to Ford and used in the Contour. This was replaced in a 2002 refresh with Mazda's AJ 3. 0L V6 and a 5-speed automatic transmission that produces 200 hp and 200 ft·lbf of torque, matching Mazda's "zoom zoom" theme. Also revised at this time were the grille, which now was larger, with a single chrome bar at the top rather than a full surround.
In 2004 it adopted a more aggressive exterior with new headlights and taillights resembling the look of "tuner cars" with "altezza" style clear taillights, and aggressive headlamps. The LX Sport suite further added body side skirts, and air dam bumpers with auxillary spoiler. The ES model added leather seatings, back air conditioner, and performance sliding doors, with a choice of sunroof or roof mounted DVD player.
By 2006, the Mazda MPV was virtually the only minivan which had not adopted the size form factor of the long wheelbase Chrysler minivans, including Kia and Nissan. Those who do buy the car appreciate its narrow and short size, light weight and maneuverability. Some vehicle reviews named it Ford's best minivan. It has a low price tag as a used car or sales incentives as new. i.e., in 2005, it was possible to pay just $15000, for a 2004 Mazda MPV with 22000, miles after being retired by a rental vehicle company, while a the trade in for a 2003 Pilot with 44000, miles was $24000,. While the back seating isn't as big as the Odyssey, for users who just need occasional 7 passenger seats, and not 4 wheel drive, the Mazda MPV is a much more cheap alternative to a well-known Honda minivan, or an SUV.