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Mazda BT-50 XTR long-term test: Part 5

By Matt Raudonikis | Photos John Willis, 10 Jun 2016 Reviews

Mazda BT-50 XTR long-term test: Part 5

The BT-50 has been pulling boats and lighting up the bush.

LAST month we mentioned the guys from Trade-a-Boat magazine borrowed our Mazda to pull some boats on a fishing trip, and they’ve since sent us some pics that show just what they were hauling.

No wonder they said it towed them with ease. The Mazda’s 3.2-litre five-cylinder diesel would have made light work of those little boats and probably could have pulled them both together without raising a sweat. All the same, it’s good to know that the boaties thought it a good thing for towing.

We also took the BT out for a night-run through Wombat and Lerderderg State Forests, with the crew from the Werribee District 4WD Club. We hit the tracks after a cracker meal at the Blackwood Hotel, and this gave us the chance to give the Lightforce HTX lights a burl.

Towing the boatThe HTXs employ a HID spot beam and an LED broad beam, and we found the LEDs to be the real winners in these scrubby conditions. The light colour is easy on the eyes and provides nice definition to the areas around the front of the car.

On the highway, the HIDs punch out way ahead of the car and are better-suited to this sort of driving, but ours need to be adjusted to get better results. We didn’t have the right tools for the job at the time, so we’ll have to see to that later.

The Mazda again showed its ease of use on bush tracks, and we did most of them in high-range 4x4 to let the 3.2 just lope along at an easy pace. Low range and a bit more throttle were used a couple of times for the steeper stuff, but it was relatively easy going on this night. We passed on the more challenging tracks, as our stock-ride-height BT would have scraped to a stop in the axle-deep ruts, but otherwise it was never challenged for traction.

Mazda BT-50 XTR frontOur Mazda has HEMA maps installed to provide more details of the bush tracks in this area. This is an option on the BT-50 and one well worth the money if you like to get off the beaten track. As far as we know, Mazda is the only company that offers this great Australian mapping product.

Getting out with the Werribee District 4WD Club was a lot of fun and showed us another way that a vehicle like the BT-50 can be used to get out and enjoy the bush. It was as much a social night as anything, and the genuine-accessories Icom UHF fitted by Mazda was buzzing with chatter all night. Thanks to the Werribee District 4WD Club for the invite.

Following our comments last month about the rattle from under the BT, Mazda took the car away and replaced the muffler that had lose internals. Problem fixed. We don’t know why the dealer couldn’t have done that.

4x4 Shed
Total kilometers: 14,984 KM
Date Acquired: November 2015
Price: $63,645 (incl. extras)
KM this month: 1337KM
Av fuel: 10.9L/10KM

Check out part 1 of the Mazda BT-50 XTR long term test.
Check out part 2 of the Mazda BT-50 XTR long term test.
Check out part 3 of the Mazda BT-50 XTR long term test.
Check out part 4 of the Mazda BT-50 XTR long term test.