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Mazda 6 Tourer long-term test: easily overlooked

Published: 03 December 2018

► Mazda 6 Tourer long-term test
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Month 1 of our Mazda 6 Tourer long-term test review: the introduction

An expensive session of regression therapy might dredge something up from the distant recesses of my memory, but I think I’m correct in saying that I’ve never driven a Mazda 6 before. It’s existed for all of the 11 years I’ve been connected with CAR and yet it’s somehow passed me by. I suspect I’m not alone in having to double check exactly what it is; so subtle is its styling, so unremarkable its presence on the road, that there could be several parked in your street without you really noticing. So I’m approaching my time with the Mazda 6 Tourer completely fresh – no preconceptions, no history to taint my views.

Ours is a 2.5-litre petrol estate in top GT Sport Nav+ spec. It comes with a long list of safety, comfort and infotainment kit, from a heated steering wheel, 360° camera and internet compatability to adaptive cruise control and i-Eloop, Mazda’s system for capturing and re-using braking energy.  

First thoughts? It looks fantastic, in a stylish and mature way, in £800 worth of deep Soul Red Crystal bodywork on 19-inch Bright Silver wheels. Inside, the fit and finish is spot-on, as you’d expect from Mazda, and the materials are of good quality, if not particularly luxurious or in any way envelope-pushing. The nappa leather seats are claimed to be ‘more sculpted to the human form for extra back support and supreme comfort’. Well, maybe – I just don’t think they were designed with someone six foot-plus in mind. I’m having to slouch, which could prove problematic.

Mazda 6 Tourer estate: the CAR magazine long-term test review

The boot is 522 litres with all the seats up, or 1664 with the rear trio folded flat. On paper this is way down on my previous car, the Peugeot 5008, which had figures of 780 and 1940 litres. We’ll see how that works out in daily use. The luggage in the photo is a bare minimum. A little ’un with bikes and scooters, a wife and dog, plus the photographic equipment, adds up to far more cases, bags and boxes.

Climbing in the back for car-to-car shots is going to be a squeeze. But the ride feels more forgiving than the 5008’s; the Peugeot had a fantastic chassis, but the sometimes crashy ride made photography quite difficult – the softer ride of my new Mazda  might not be the most dynamic but it’s perfect for photography. 

By Alex Tapley

Logbook: Mazda 6 Tourer GT Sport Nav+ 2.5 Skyactiv-G

Price £31,695
As tested £32,495
Engine 2488cc 16v 4-cyl, 192bhp @ 6000rpm, 190lb ft @ 4000rpm
Transmission 6-speed auto, front-wheel drive
Performance 8.1sec 0-62mph, 139mph, 156g/km CO2
Miles this month 1489
Total 2624
Our mpg 33.58
Official mpg 41.5
Fuel this month £290.59
Extra costs None

By CAR's road test team

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