The next Bongo van appeared in 1978. It was a mid-engine rear wheel drive vehicle. Ford sold this version of the van as the Ford Econovan, while Mazda sold it for export as the E1300, E1400, and E1600, depending on engine size.
- 1978 1.3L TC, 60hp (44kW)
- 1978-1982 1.6L NA, 80hp (59kW)
- 1979-1980 1.4L UC, 70hp (52kW)
The Bongo was redesigned for 1983 with new engines. A new long-wheelbase version known as the Bongo Brawny was introduced.
- 1983-1988 2.0L FE
- 1983-1988 2.0L RF Diesel
- 1983-1988 2.2L S2 Diesel
The SS platform Bongo lasted from 1989 until 1998. This van was also sold by Nissan as the Vanette.
The SG platform Bongo Friendee was introduced in 1995. Ford began selling the Friendee in the Japanese home market as the Ford Freda.
- 2.0L RS-V I4
- 2.5L RF-V V6
- 2.5L turbodiesel (the same engine is found in the Ford Ranger Pickup in the UK)
The Mazda Bongo Friendee van SGL, is an eight seater MPV. Some have had Mazda factory fitted kitchens installed within their car, but many others are imported and converted to camper vans in the UK. All of them have fold down seats downstairs to make a double bed, and on many models there is also an "Auto Free Top" elevating roof which 2 more people can sleep in. Flat-top versions are also available.
Launched in 1995, they are usually (but not exclusively) available in automatic transmissions, and come in 2WD (SGL3) and 4WD (SGL5) versions. 2.5 turbo diesels are common in Japan, although there is a 2.5 V6 petrol version available.
Later (post-1999) models have a revised bodystyle and have different engines, although the 2.5 turbodiesel continues unchanged. Air conditioning, climate control and electronic blinds are fitted as standard.
An updated Bongo was released in June, 1998 as a 1999 model. At the same time, Mitsubishi Motors began reselling the Bongo. This was branded the Mazda Access in some markets.