Mazda BT-50 SP 4WD Dual Cab Ute 2024 review

Is the Mazda BT-50 SP any good

Mazda BT-50 SP is an upgraded model of the popular 4WD Ute. It was released in mid-2023 and includes several suspension and cosmetic improvements over the donor model.

Mazda BT-50 SP front quarter 3The Mazda BT-50 SP is priced from around $68,500 plus the usual costs and is a reliable, robust 4WD Ute.

Listeners can find more Mazda BT-50 articles HERE 

Listeners can also find more Mazda BT-50 articles HERE. 

TO LISTEN TO THE MAZDA BT-50 RADIO REVIEW, CLICK BELOW

Mazda BT-50 SP Video review

What is good?

  • Upgraded suspension.
  • 4WD and towing Capability
  • Interior comfort

What is not so good?

  • No wireless phone charging
  • Central screen starting to date.
  • Turning off LKA every time

 More Mazda BT-50 SP Details 

Mazda BT-50 SP front quarter 4

What does the Mazda BT-50 SP look like?

Well like a normal BT-50 with more, I guess.

I do like the more SUV like appearance of the BT-50 rather than the bigger bolder more aggressive styles of some other recent Utes. It achieves the same outcome, just looks more stylish while doing it.

BT-50 SP comes with an integrated Lightforce light bar that is set into the front grill. It lights up well but the calibration for the auto function needs a touch of work. Also It drops a bit later than I would like and pops up also a bit later than expected.

The lightbar does provide with 1 lux of illumination at up to 569m.

Mazda BT-50 SP wheel and tyres

There are also 18-inch alloy wheels and roof rails. In addition, there are several body decals.

The suspension with the SP Pro Enhancement pack ensures the BT-50 sits higher than normal, which gives it a purposeful look.

The tub also comes with a roller tonneau cover and inbuilt liner.

Other SP features include:

  • Gloss black sail plane sports bar
  • Grey side steps
  • Gloss black fender flares
  • Grey roof rails
  • Gloss black exterior mirrors
  • Gloss black door and tailgate handles
  • Black grille with gunmetal signature wing

Mazda BT-50 SP front interior 2

What about inside the BT-50 SP?

Mazda have done a good job of upgrading the look and feel aiming at a more premium ambience.

They do this with:

  • soft touch points everywhere,
  • leather steering wheel,
  • black and driftwood leather interior,
  • electric adjustable heated front seats that are particularly comfortable,
  • Additional lumbar support,
  • wireless apple car Play and Android Auto,
  • plus, more.

Otherwise, it’s the same as the standard BT-50, which isn’t too bad.

The central stack is starting to look a little dated now, since the Ranger came out with the vertical large screen that mirrors a smart phone.

This trend was first seen in the Subaru Outback and other vehicles before.

Mazda-BT-50-SP-engine

Mazda BT-50 engine and performance.

BT-50 is powered by the turbocharged 3.0-litre, four-cylinder diesel engine found in the wider BT-50 range. This generates 140kW peak power along with 450Nm torque, the latter provided from 1,600 to 2,600rpm for exceptional pulling power.

Combined-cycle fuel economy is listed at 8.0L/100km when fitted with the six-speed automatic transmission.

A dual-range shift on the fly 4WD system is fitted as standard, with switchable locking rear differential for further improved traction.

The BT-50 is an excellent tow vehicle with a 3500kg rating and 350kg on the tow ball. We didn’t tow with the SP model, but the revised suspension would only make it a better tow vehicle than the standard model.

Mazda BT-50 SP suspension upgrade 2

What is added in the suspension upgrade?

Adding more aggression to the sleek SP model grade, the Mazda BT-5 is upgraded suspension with the SP Pro enhancement pack adds Nitrocharger suspension for the first time to the BT-50.

Specifically tuned for the set-up of the vehicle, the new suspension incorporates upgraded springs that add a useful lift of up to two inches to increase the Mazda Ute’s offroad capability.

These are paired to twin tube shock absorbers offering extra ride comfort both on the bitumen and off the beaten track. These modifications have been rigorously tested to ensure that the vehicle lift does not impact any safety systems – including the standard-fit ABS and Electronic Stability Control (DSC).

Mazda BT-50 SP suspension upgrade 1

What is the BT-50 SP like to drive?

With the 3.0L turbo diesel engine the driving is simple. Plenty of low-down grunt, enough zip when needed and reasonable fuel economy.

The thick rimmed steering wheel sits easily in the hands and steering response is good for a recreational Ute.

The upgraded suspension ensures that the compromise between on road and off-road ride and handling in reduced.

Its responsive on road, handling more like a premium SUV, than a Ute. Ride is relatively smooth, and you don’t need a load in the back to make it liveable.

Off road it excels. On corrugated dirt roads it simply glides along, cocooning the occupants and minimising most of the rough ride.

On sand it’s awesome. We took it onto Stockton beach without letting the tyres down and it simply went about its business without fuss. The low torque certainly helped, but the suspension also aided in smoothing out what was a particularly rutted approach track.

Mazda BT-50 SP profile 1

What about Safety features?

The Mazda BT-50 comes with a five-star ANCAP safety rating (tested August 2022)

Highlight Features include:

  • Trailer sway control (TSC)
  • Rear cross traffic alert (RCTA)
  • Lane departure warning (LDW)
  • Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM)
  • Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) which can be selectively turned off thankfully.
  • Hill Descent Control (HDC)
  • Automatic High Beam (AHB)
  • Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB)
  • Anti-Lock Braking (ABS)
  • A whole bunch of airbags,
  • ISOFIX child restraint anchor points and top tethers (2)
  • Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • Plus, a heap more of the usual safety features.

A comprehensive list of all the safety and comfort features on the BT-50 can be found HERE

Mazda BT-50 SP rear quarter 3

Mazda BT-50 SP final thoughts

I like the BT-50 SP with the enhancement packs. They add a level of ambience and practicality to an otherwise good Ute.

Its compliant around town and was at home on dirt roads, forest trails and the beach.

The price is getting up there, but also good value compared to the escalating prices from competitors.

Mazda BT-50 SP towing pack

 Instead of a Mazda BT-50 SP what else could I buy?

The recreational Dual Cab Ute segment is packed. And the top end is the most popular.

Buyers could look at the Isuzu D-Max X-TerrainNissan Navara Pro 4X WarriorToyota HiLux Rogue, or the HiLux GR SportFord Ranger Wildtrak, or the all new Mitsubishi Triton

Mazda BT-50 SP wheel articulation 1

Some other Mazda BT-50 Articles

Mazda-BT-50-SP-engine

Mazda BT-50

Model

BT-50 SP

Model Price$68,510 MLP*
Engine3.0L 4 Cyl Turbo Diesel Euro 5
Drivetrain6 Sp Sports AT Dual range 4WD
Power140kW @ 3,600rpm
Torque450Nm @ 1,600-2,600rpm
Safety5 Star ANCAP (August 2022)
0-100kmh / Top SpeedTBA
CO2 Emissions207 g/km
Economy ADR8.0L/100km / 76L capacity
Economy on test9.5L/100k
Max Range1101km
Range on test950km
Servicing12Mth / 15,000km 5 Yrs. Capped Price
Warranty5yr/ Unlimited km
Roadside Assist5Yr. conditional roadside assist

*MLP Includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of options. Some features mentioned in the article are options. RDAP means Recommended Drive Away Price (without options but including all other charges). Pricing is from Redbook as at date of article or from the manufacturer’s website.

Mazda BT-50 SP front interior 1

Overall Rating    

89/100

Behind the Wheel9
Comfort9
Equipment9
Performance8
Ride and Handling9
Practicality8
Fit for Purpose9
AWD/Towing Capability*10 (4WD 5/5 Towing 5/5)
Technology/connectivity9
Value for Money9

*Towing and AWD capability is measured against similar vehicles in the same class.

Mazda BT-50 SP Ute tub 1

Dimensions

Mazda BT-50 SP

Overall Length5280mm
Wheelbase3125mm
Width1870mm
Height1790mm
Wheels18×7.5 Alloy
Tyres265/60 R18
Max ground clearanceUp to 240mm
Wading Depth800mm
Approach27 degrees
Rampover23.8 degrees
Departure angle24.2 degrees
Turning Circle KTK12.5m
Tub Length1571mm
Tub width arches1120mm
Tub width1530mm
Tub Depth490mm
Kerb Weight2035kg
Payload (kg)1080kg
GVM (kg)3100kg
GCM6000kg
Towing Capacity (braked)3500kg
Tow Ball rating350kg

 

Overall Rating
  • 8.9/10
    Overall Rating - 8.9/10
8.9/10

Summary

Mazda BT-50 SP final thoughts

I like the BT-50 SP with the enhancement packs. They add a level of ambience and practicality to an otherwise good Ute.

Its compliant around town and was at home on dirt roads, forest trails and the beach.

The price is getting up there, but also good value compared to the escalating prices from competitors.

About Rob Fraser 312 Articles
Rob first learned to drive on the farm in a left hand drive WW11 Jeep when he was 11, many years ago. He has maintained a strong interest in the industry ever since and was hooked on 4WDriving way back then.Often known for taking the 4WD in the driveway over the sports car, he has travelled pretty much everywhere in Australia and when he is bored goes for a drive.