2017 Mazda CX-5 FWD Test | Review | Car and Driver

Whether we call them little SUVs or compress crossovers, a extended interest of these vehicles lies in their size, practicality, price, and towering seating position. Driving dynamics aren’t scarcely as important, expected descending somewhere around a speed of a windshield wipers and a feel of a glovebox fasten among a priorities of many buyers. Most of these vehicles go down a highway with an harmless float and adequate certainty to prove a segment’s buyers, though to those of us who suffer a approach steering and cessation play together, this difficulty is about as interesting as, well, measuring a speed of appetite windows.

Feel a Energy

There is an exception. It’s apparent as shortly as we start pushing Mazda’s CX-5 that it has an appetite that’s absent from a appliancelike competition. The steering is accurate and tuned to yield a feedback of a sports car, and a cessation greets corners with restraint instead of reluctance. A six-speed involuntary snaps off discerning shifts and avoids a unchanging engine sound total by competitors’ invariably non-static involuntary transmissions during full throttle. There are additional tiny touches for pushing enthusiasts, such as a floor-mounted accelerator pedal. This sold underline isn’t accurately a large deal, though Mazda went to a difficulty for a same reason oppulance brands do: since it feels improved in operation than a unresolved pedal.

We do wish there were a bit some-more appetite connected to that pedal. Mazda’s 2.5-liter inline-four with 187 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque is a solitary engine offering—at slightest until a betrothed diesel arrives—and while it provides a gratifying snap of acceleration from a stop, a unrestrained for relocating a 3537-pound CX-5 wanes as speed climbs. At a exam track, a front-wheel-drive exam car ran from 0 to 60 mph in 7.8 seconds and by a quarter-mile in 16.2 during 86 mph. Add heavier all-wheel-drive hardware and those times positively will lengthen. Most of a category is quicker, led by a Subaru Forester XT, that hits 60 mph in only 6.3 seconds. The CX-5 does out-drag a all-wheel-drive Toyota RAV4 and a Nissan Rogue, though we have nonetheless to exam a latest front-drive versions of a Toyota and a Nissan.

Mazda’s 2.5-liter does improved on a fuel-economy side of a equation. The EPA predicts 24 mpg in a city, 31 on a highway, and 27 combined, that is good though not best in class. A front-drive Honda CR-V with a discretionary turbo 1.5-liter four-cylinder earnings 28 mpg city and 34 highway in EPA testing; a new Chevrolet Equinox with a 1.5-liter turbo 4 manages 26 city and 32 highway. Still, a CX-5’s fuel economy is improved than average, and ours exceeded a EPA estimates with a 32-mpg normal in mostly highway driving.

Fine Refinements

At highway speeds, Mazda’s efforts to overpower a CX-5 with a thicker windshield and additional sound insulation have paid dividends. In a test, a sound turn during 70 mph forsaken from a prior model’s 69-decibel reading to a luxury-car-like 65 decibels. The redesigned interior also moves a CX-5 closer to a reward brands. The 7.0-inch infotainment shade that sticks out of a instrument row like a little flat-screen radio is simply tranquil by a rotary doorknob behind a shifter—or by hold when a CX-5 is stopped. Materials are first-rate, chair comfort is excellent, and a newest pattern cultured has hints of Audi and Mercedes-Benz.

Rear-seat space still trails many competitors. The 2017 indication uses a heavily revised chronicle of a prior CX-5’s height rather than a totally new architecture, that means a new interior is no larger, though a back seats are some-more gentle than before, underline dual stages of recline, and overlay flush with a load floor. Buyers seeking limit load and rear-seat space competence be improved served by a RAV4, Equinox, or CR-V.

Those who value steering and doing can demeanour past a smallish back seat, that isn’t so distant off a category normal to be a understanding breaker. And while we would like a bit some-more power, a CX-5 is a constrained and beguiling little SUV in a category that too mostly is anything but.

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