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The Mazda Tribute (Code J14) is a mid-size car-based Crossover (automobile) made by Japanese automaker Mazda since 2001. It is jointly developed with Ford Motor Company and based on the front-wheel drive Mazda 626 platform, which is in turn the basis for the similar Ford Escape on the CD2 platform. The Tribute is priced below the Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner in Ford's CD2 SUV lineup.

The Tribute and Escape debuted in 2001, offering front or all wheel drive and a choice of a transversely-mounted 2.0L Ford Zetec 4-cylinder engine or 3.0L Ford Duratec V6. Ford Escape was also sold as the Ford Maverick in Europe with a Ford 2.0L I4 Zetec engine with manual transmission, or 3.0L Duratec coupled to automatic transmission.

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The 3.0L DOHC V6 boasts 200 hp and 200 ft.-lbs. of torque. Standard equipment on the Tribute include air conditioning, an automatic transmission (V6 models only), power door locks and windows, a roof rack and an 80-watt AM/FM Stereo with CD player

Mazda Tribute pictures


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Year of Mazda Tribute


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One main difference between the Tribute and the Ford Escape/Maverick is that the Tribute's suspension is tuned for a firmer ride than the Escape/Maverick, in order to correspond with Mazda's sporty image. It is also Mazda's oldest SUV still in production.

The Tribute made its debut at the 2000 Los Angeles Auto Show. In the United States, it somewhat filled the gap left by the Mazda Navajo, a rebadged Ford Explorer, (which was retired in 1994), while in most other countries it was the first Mazda-badged SUV ever sold. Also, in Japan, Mazda had an SUV called the Mazda Proceed Levante, a rebadged Suzuki Escudo prior to the SUV's debut. The Ford plant in Claycomo, Missouri assembled Tribute for the North American market, alongside Ford Escape. The Mazda plant in Hofu, Japan and the Ford Lio Ho plant in Taiwan assembled Tribute for their respective markets. The 2001-2006 Mazda Tribute featured plain-looking but comfortable roomy interior. It had decent hadling and car-like ride.

Engine options:

  • 2.0L YF I4, 129PS (95kW)/183N·m (135ft·lbf)
  • 3.0L AJ V6, 203PS (150kW)/265N·m (195ft·lbf)

The 2.0L 4-cylinder engine had Timing belt driven Camshafts, while the 3.0L Duratec V6 featured a maintenance-free timing chain.

Revisions for 2005

Both the Escape and Tribute were refreshed for 2005. The base engine became the Mazda 2.3L MZR 4, and the top remained the 3.0L Duratec V6. In North American built models, a floor mounted automatic transmission shifter replaced the column shifter. However, Japanese-built models continued with a column shifter. Mazda decided to halt production after the 2006 model year for the Tribute, and a hybrid version of the Tribute has been introduced alongside the next generation Tribute as a 2008 model.

Engine options:

  • 2.3L MZR I4, 153PS (114kW)/206N·m (152ft·lbf)
  • 3.0L AJ V6, 203PS (150kW)/261N·m (193ft·lbf)

Asia-Pacific (2007-present)

A significantly face-lifted version of the Tribute was released in the second half of 2006 for Asia Pacific markets. The updated Tribute featured a larger, bolder grille, with an enlarged Mazda emblem, as well as restyled front bumper and headlights. Side mirrors featured integrated indicators.



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