Mazda launched a deluxe version of its MPV minivan in Japan this week, Kyodo News reported.

The new MPV VS (vintage and sports) version is based on the standard 2.5-liter V6 Sport model, but with extra standard equipment such as leather-rim steering wheel, chrome-plated side mirrors and leather seats.

The two-wheel-drive VS costs Japanese buyers around 2,800,000 yen ($US24,000).

The extra equipment is worth around 450,000 yen ($US3,900) but the VS model price costs only 300,000 yen ($US2,600) more than the Sport model.

Mazda said that the launch of the luxury VS commemorates the MPV winning the Best Minivan award from the Automotive Researchers and Journalists Conference of Japan (RJC).