The Mazda 5 is a decent car in isolation - but in the marketplace it must face the excellent Ford C-Max and the very good Peugeot 5008, both of which have moved expectations in this hotly contested class forward.

The Mazda is a fine car to pilot, but there are better out there – notably the Ford and the Peugeot. And while the Mazda continues to have the benefit from sliding side doors, that novelty’s also shared with the Ford these days.

Revised 5 fails to hit the mark when measured against the opposition

While the cleverness of the Mazda’s interior remains, again it has been overtaken in the usability stakes by others that provide a genuine seven seats rather than the Mazda’s six and a half – you’ll have kids fighting to avoid the centre seat in the middle row.

Even if the kids are fighting in the back, the amount of road, wind and engine noise will do their best to drown them out. All that is not enough to dismiss the Mazda 5 outright, but it highlights the fact that a collection of virtues that was once good enough to make it one of the standout choices in the class is no longer sufficient to pull it on to the podium.

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