Written byShaun McGowan
Mazda CX-5 is, arguably, the most polished mainstream five-seat SUV, with the most advanced engine technology, in the market today.
The CX-5 range is quite complex, so it’ll pay you to take the time to digest it fully, in order to make the right ultimate choice
5 seat configuration
140kW/252Nm | 170kW/420Nm 7.4L/100km combined fuel consumption (Auto, AWD)
140kW/450Nm 5.7L/100km combined fuel consumption (Auto, AWD)
1,340 litres VDA (rear seats folded down and up to roof)
Front-drive only, available in the two lowest-spec grades (Maxx and Maxx Sport), and on-demand all-wheel drive, which is available from Maxx Sport grade, all the way up to the range-topping Akera grade.
The CX-5 is a five-seater across the range. (If you need seven seats, look at CX-8 or CX-9.) If you choose a front-drive CX-5 variant, you’ll get a fairly basic 2.0-litre petrol engine and the choice of six-speed manual or auto transmission.
All-wheel-drive CX-5s are available with a 2.5 litre atmo (ie - non-turbo) petrol engine across the range. In the ‘Touring Active’ models grade and above, the 2.2-litre twin-turbo diesel also becomes available, and in the ‘GT SP’ grade, the 2.5-litre turbo petrol engine is available.
At the top of the range, in the ‘Akera’ grade, all three engines (2.5 atmo, 2.5 turbo petrol and 2.2 diesel) are available.
In choosing between the engines, it’s worth noting that the 2.5 atmo engine (140kW and 252Nm peak outputs) is adequate for ordinary driving. It is, however, a massive step up in performance if you choose the 2.5 turbo petrol engine (170kW and 420Nm). This is most apparent in the mid-rev range, where most driving is typically done. Essentially, you’re looking at (ballpark) 60-70 per cent more power in the mid-rev range, which makes the 2.5 turbo engine seem effortless to drive, in comparison.
The 2.2 twin-turbo diesel engine is also a solid performer. It emits 23 per cent less CO2, compared with the turbo petrol engine, in official tests, and also manages the lowest fuel consumption of all three engines in the AWD CX-5 range.
However, because diesels benefit enormously from regular highway usage, it might be prudent to reserve choosing this engine for vehicles destined to do a considerable amount of driving on the open road, as opposed to short-distance urban commuting.
In addition to MAXX features
In addition to Maxx Sport
In addition to Touring
In addition to Touring Active
In addition to GT SP
Over a decade ago, Mazda CX-5 defined the modern SUV as we know it. Today, the New Mazda CX-5 continues to rewrite the rules for what drivers can expect when it comes to style, technology, safety and comfort.
With Mazda CX-5 Touring Active, getting away on rugged adventures is effortless thanks to AWD and an adventure ready design
With sports trims, red accents, 19-inch black alloys and more, Mazda CX-5 GT SP is adrenalin ready.
Take on the city in style. The height of refinement, Mazda CX-5 is craftsmanship and stunning aesthetics combined.
Although Mazda claims on its website that “getting away on rugged adventures is effortless thanks to AWD and an adventure-ready design” it’s probably worth remembering that this vehicle is really designed for bitumen driving and only light adventuring, at best.
Certainly CX-5 can handle driving on the odd dirt road and (very easy) fire trail, but proper 4X4 adventuring is really well outside the CX-5’s remit, and the space-saver spare tyre that comes standard across the range really does limit the vehicle’s adventuring capability.
(If you need a full-sized spare, it might be time to compare Hyundai Tucson, Kia Sportage and Subaru Forester.)
Shaun is the founder of Money.com.au and is determined to help people pay as little as possible for financial products. Through education and building world class technology. Previously Shaun co-founded CarLoans.com.au and Lend.