What is it?
This is the new Mazda 5, the Japanese manufacturer’s latest take on its functional mid-size family MPV.
We stole a sneak preview drive of it earlier in the year, but that was in still-to-be-finalised, pre-prod form. That example was powered by Mazda’a new, all singing and dancing 2.0 DISI i-stop petrol engine.
Here, we drive it with a revised, more economical version of the firm’s existing 113bhp, 122lb ft 1.8-litre petrol engine, mated to the six-speed manual gearbox that will come as standard no matter which engine you chose.
The new 5 also benefits from a healthy dose of Mazda’s ‘wind on water’ Nagare design language, which translates into some not unappealing swoopy curves and swathes along the flanks, mated to the firm’s new family face up front.
What’s it like?
To drive? Really not bad at all. Mazda was keen to make the point that a driver-friendly ‘unified linear feel’ has been engineered into the new 5, refining the transition from braking, through turn-in to corner exit into one seamless process.
Sounds like it should be taken with a pinch of salt, but the reality is that the 5 is a particularly smooth steer and not a little rewarding to drive.