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I owned two Rangers before this 2002 Mazda Dual Sport model, and while they share many features, such as the dash and general body style, this Mazda is the best pick-up I've ever owned. I did come from owning a 112 HP 4 cylinder, manual shift, to the much more powerful V-6, also with the manual, and what a difference. Having the Dual Sport model also gives you the lift package, fender flares, and the wider tires. This truck also came with a solid , locking bed cover, and a bed extender. I added a K&N Performance Air Intake system, (about 90 minutes of easy work) and the sound that comes from under that hood is nothing short of Awesome! I really can't think of one thing I would like to change about how this truck looks or drives, I love it. In fact, this is the second time I've ever taken the time to review a vehicle, the first was for my 87 Mazda RX-7 Turbo and I've been driving since 1975. I guess it would be easy for me to say that Mazda makes great vehicles, at least in my experience.
Our family car is a Mazda Protege. I based my decision to find a Mazda pickup on the quality, performance, and value of the Protege. I made a good decision. Just as with the first car the B3000 is an excellent vehicle. I got the Dual Sport package so the ride is a bit stiff but come on, it's a pick up. I also opted for the manual 5-speed. Combined with the V-6 it's a winner. Plenty of power when I need it and good highway mileage cruising in 5th gear; 24 mpg city so far and 28 mpg highway. Beats the 17 mpg and 22 mpg I was getting with the Jeep Grand Cherokee I traded in. The interior has enough comfort and appointments to make driving in rush hour traffic an enjoyable experience. The factory cd player and sound system are excellent, the A/C is tough enough to stand up to the 105+ degree summer heat where I live, and the seats are highly adjustable and comfortable. After purchasing one Mazda I was reasonably sure that Mazda built a solid vehicle. Now after driving two I'm certain.
Great car. I've been waanting a 'toy' truck for a long time, and I'm thrilled with this one. My brother calls it a 'thinking man's' truck because it is more economical and easier to get around than the bigger ones on the road. This truck rides comfortably but does not appear to get as good gas mileage as I'd hoped. Other than that, the ease of driving, parking and hauling is terrific.