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Thread: We love our Mazda Bongo

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Cambridge, Waikato
    Posts
    2,586

    Default We love our Mazda Bongo

    I want to tell you all about 1 good financial decision we made during the emigration process. Just the 1, the rest were c**p! We bought a Mazda Bongo campervan on Trade Me 2 months before we left the UK. We bought it from a reputable dealer (Stu MacDonald in Napier - he's ace) and paid half the cost as a deposit, and then the rest when we picked it up. He was fine about hanging on to it for us.

    Our thinking was that we wanted to see as much of NZ as possible - especially as we only planned to come for a year initially. The Mazda Bongo we bought sleeps 4 people - 2 downstairs, and 2 in the pop-top. The van we bought was an ancient Japanese import, but with fairly low mileage - 80,000km. It cost $11,000.

    It has a kind of retro, A-team style, with it's ugly boxy shape and red go-faster stripes. When we first posted on this forum and said what we'd bought, someone posted back and told us we'd made a huge mistake - Mazda Bongos are a nightmare etc etc. Nothing could be further from the truth - it's SOOO reliable. It has never let us down, despite severe abuse on our part - e.g. frequently running out of diesel. Well, the starter motor conked out on New Year's Eve in a very remote part of the South Island, but all turned out well thanks to a friendly local mechanic.

    We've been everywhere in it, and slept everywhere in it and it's great - saved us a fortune in baches and motels. And it's still going strong. And if the kids are fighting - they can have a whole row of seats to themselves. We love it. Here are some pics:

    Just picked it up



    The Coromandel


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Cambridge, Waikato
    Posts
    2,586

    Default

    The south Island Tour




  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    36,895

    Default

    That's great. Isn't it good when you get a vehicle that feels like part of the family?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Cambridge
    Posts
    1,219

    Default

    Soooo envious. We'd do that if we could. Except without the kids. Just the dogs.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Cambridge ex- Liverpool
    Posts
    3,562

    Default

    As long as that roof doesn't blow up in a gale Sam!!

    Looks great - saves lugging a tent I suppose....

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Chester>Leeds>Scotland>Waikato
    Posts
    1,129

    Default

    Has it got a name?

    I'd call it Brian.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Bideford, North Devon, UK
    Posts
    38

    Default

    Great, we had a Bongo in the UK for a year. Fantastic versatile vehicle. Had some great times!! Unfortunately, it was so expensive for fuel here we had to sell it on and get a smaller car. Really depressing.

    Make the most of it!! I feel some great times ahead!! Photos are great, can't wait to get over there!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Cambridge, New Zealand
    Posts
    925

    Default

    You have just so made my day...
    we have a Bongo here in the UK

    Its a fairly recent purchase for us and we haven't really given it as much use as I'd have like to but I think its absolutely FAB! The looks we got off people when we bought it,,,everyone thought we were mad! But its fantastic, versatile, plenty of room for travelling and sleeping and SO easy to drive.

    We are hoping to be able to buy one in NZ - not worth trying to bring this one over as its quite an old one. You have given me hope that we can get a nice one over there!

    oh.. the other day I came out of work and had a note under my window wiper to say "you've been BONGO'D" !!! it was a fellow bongo owner telling me to look at the forum/website bongofury.com - so there are plenty of us out there!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Warkworth , NZ
    Posts
    1,402

    Default

    Vicky tell me more about one that sleeps 5......please! Would LOVE to ahve something that we could all fit in but had looked at camper vans and been HORRIFIED at the cost, but maybe there is hope!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Cambridge, New Zealand
    Posts
    925

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Carey View Post
    Vicky tell me more about one that sleeps 5......please!
    it officially sleeps 4 but it would depend on size of the children. Some people sleep a small child on the front passenger seat fully reclined - others can squeeze 3 small ones into a double bed size.

    our boys are slightly older at 12 and 14 and love to kip outside in their own tent but if necessary they can go in the roof tent and little girl on front seat or in with us.

    ( you can also get tents / awnings that attach to side or rear door)

    but Bongos ARE deceptively spacious!

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