Mazda B-2500

Made for just four years from 1998 to 2001, the Mazda B2500 sport pickup truck aims to compete in the small pickup market against the likes of the Chevy S-10 and other economical trucks that can handle rough driving conditions and decent payloads while offering better towing capacity than a wagon or car.

More on the Mazda B-2500
Mazda B2500 Origins

Mazda first introduced the B-series pickups in 1961. Throughout production, the number in the name has always indicated engine size. Thus, the B2500 uses a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine to produce power. Early examples had a harder time breaking into the American market due to brand loyalty to the ""Big Three"" American automakers and the mind-set of the average American truck buyer.

The B2500 is part of the sixth generation of pickups produced by Mazda. Mazda eventually partnered with Ford, and the B2500 shares a platform with the Ford Ranger truck, which competes in the same class.

For years, American trucks displayed a ""bigger is better"" attitude and the stated goal of being able to handle increasingly challenging tasks. This mentality is still evident in the hyperbolic advertising campaigns used to sell full-sized pickup trucks, but the Mazda B-Series represents a different type of pickup. Early examples basically pre-sage the compact pickup truck that would eventually grow to sizeable portions as American consumers became more comfortable with the idea of a durable, yet economic, pickup.

Later generations of the B-Series feature rotary engines and a quiet, smooth performance. Such models are collectables, and enthusiasts seek them out. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Mazda kept producing interesting pickups that went against the grain of basic pickup ethos. Over time, the continued effort began to pay off as consumers finally accepted these ideas.

In the mid-1980s, after producing rotary engines and bodies for electric powered pickups, Mazda settled into truck production that satisfied American car-buying tastes. These compact B-Series trucks use four- and six-cylinder engines but fit a more traditional mold. Mazda’s partnership with Ford makes North American production and access much easier, and the B-Series trucks did well after a huge multi-million dollar effort to redesign the venerable series to appeal to North American buyers.

The B2500 arrived in 1998 and lasted four years, but similar trucks are still available; the short production run can be attributed to constant name changes because of design changes. The model’s discontinuation should not be regarded as an indicator of failure or lack of quality. The B2500 no longer exists because of a change in engine size, not a scuttling of the design.

About the Mazda B2500

By the time the B2500 came along, these trucks had a dual reputation. On the one hand, customers regarded the B2500 as a Ford Ranger with slight changes and a Mazda emblem on the hood. Then in 1998, when the B2500 was released, Mazda sought to separate its pickup line from the Ford truck siblings that lent a platform to the B-Series. Thus a redesign of the B-Series took place, and the B2500 represents the four-cylinder version of these new Mazdas that have their own look and feel.

The B2500 is rather capable for a four-cylinder pickup, and offers decent towing capacity. Through its four years of production, no major design flaws surfaced, speaking to the reliability of the vehicle. Like most examples in class, this vehicle doesn’t have massive power, but it will accomplish most basic truck tasks without a lot of expensive fuel.

In keeping with Mazda company themes of the time period, the sporty B2500 handles reasonably well and is fun to drive. With pickups, sportiness amounts to playing in the dirt. In this respect, the B2500 always handles itself well enough and can provide truck-driving pleasure for those enthusiasts who want to test this truck in rougher conditions.

While Mazda compact pickups still show success in the market, the B2500 model ended production in 2001. There are still Mazda pickups to intrigue potential buyers for model year 2012 trucks, but this Mazda compact pickup model is only available as a used vehicle.

Mazda B2500 Evolution

Over four short years that barely represents a whole generation for the B-Series Mazda pickups, not much changed with the B2500. In fact, a major change necessitated a name change according to Mazda’s naming philosophy. Throughout its production run, the B2500 always remained a four-cylinder compact pickup with ""Mazda sportiness"" and respectable reliability, with only minor changes in cosmetics or standard features and options.

Select a Mazda B-2500 Year

2001 Mazda B-2500

Truck, Utility/Offroad

The B-Series is Mazda’s line of pickup trucks, from small to full size models, in production from 1961 through 2006 when the line was replaced by the BT25.

2000 Mazda B-2500

Truck, Utility/Offroad

The 2000 Mazda B2500 is a mechanical clone of the Ford Ranger, which means great performance and reliability.

1999 Mazda B-2500

Truck, Utility/Offroad

The 1999 Mazda B-2500 provides the market with an atypical pickup truck.

1998 Mazda B-2500

Truck, Utility/Offroad

The upgrades that Madza makes for its B-2500 makes this compact pick-up truck an incredibly rugged, well-built import.