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Mazda MPV

LW MPV

Mazda logo1 Sep 1999

By THE GOAUTO TEAM

Very much developed in the American Chrysler Voyager mould, Mazda’s second generation MPV shared nothing with its slightly offbeat predecessor.

It featured a transverse mounted front-wheel drive layout that was based on the 1991-1997 Mazda 626 V6 – a necessary economy for the post-bankrupt Ford-controlled Mazda, particularly as that generation 626 was still produced in the US until 2002.

The totally redesigned body eschewed the old car’s wide-opening rear doors for people-mover conventional sliding rear doors, but it was more space efficient despite now only capable of seating seven all-up. All rear seats could now be removed.

Power came courtesy of a US Ford-derived 129kW/227Nm 2.5-litre quad-cam 24-valve Duratec V6 engine (shared with the Ford Cougar) that was allied to a new four-speed automatic gearbox.

Torque dropped compared to the old model, but then so did weight – by nearly 100kg.

More cost cuts were clear with the old MPV’s rear disc brakes giving way to less efficient drums, although anti-lock brakes were still included. The standard features list included dual air-conditioning, cruise control, trip computer and alloy wheels.

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Mazda models