Review : 2022 Mazda CX-5

Published: Feb 25, 2022 11:26 AM

The world of compact SUVs is an incredibly competitive place. At the moment, there are almost 80 different models offered to customers, which makes choosing the right one pretty hard. However, we have to give credit to Mazda for making its CX-5 series pretty distinguishable amongst tens of models which resulted in solid sales and significant market share. With the recognisable design, excellent selection of features, wide range of engines and sporty appearance, the CX-5 is a favourite amongst SUV shoppers, even though it is one of the older models on offer. Let’s see what the secret of its popularity is and why this model is in such demand.

Introduced in 2017, this is the second generation CX-5 model, which slots between smaller CX-5 and bigger CX-8. Perfectly sized, it is spacious enough to be a family vehicle and compact enough for crawling through the urban jungle of modern metropolises. Interestingly, while other manufacturers tried to mimic off-road capabilities and bulky design cues with their compact SUVs, Mazda went the other way and gave the CX-5 a sporty feel and emphases the driving dynamic rather than ruggedness. In 2021, CX-5 was slightly restyled and improved to remain competitive and enhance its looks.

The Engines

Some competitors only offer one or two engines for their models, but Mazda has four units on offer for all types of customers. The lineup starts with a naturally-aspirated 2.0-litre petrol engine with 115 kW and 200 Nm, followed by a 2.5-litre petrol four-cylinder with 140 kW and 252 Nm of torque. The top engine offering is the 2.5-litre, turbocharged four-pot with 170 kW and 420 Nm of torque which is reserved for higher grades. However, Mazda didn’t forget the buyers who want to keep their fuel bills to a minimum and offer a modern and frugal diesel engine. The 2.2-litre, twin-turbo diesel unit produces 140 kW and 420 Nm and offers not only excellent fuel economy but also a decent performance, as well.

The Mazda is offering a 6-speed manual, but most models are equipped with automatic transmission, which is a better choice and on par with other manufacturers. The bottom spec models are front-wheel-drive, while upper spec trim levels are all AWD.

The CX-5 Models

There are six trim levels for Mazda CX-5, with the base being the Maxx. This package includes a front-wheel-drive layout, 2.0-litre engine with 115 kW and a pretty comprehensive list of standard features. Despite being the cheapest model in the range, you will get LED headlights, a new 7.0-inch digital cluster and an 8.0-inch infotainment display. Of course, cloth seats, manual air conditioning and 17-inch wheels are also part of the package. The following model is Maxx Sport which adds satellite navigation and dual climate control, amongst other features.

If you are looking for an all-wheel-drive CX-5, you need to step up to Touring grade, including this drivetrain option. The real step up in terms of features is the next grade, CX-5 GT SP, which includes leather seats, sunroof, 19-inch wheels, exterior upgrades, bigger 10.25-inch infotainment screen, heated seats, and premium seats audio system. However, on the top of the CX-5 range sits Akera grade, which is fully packed with various luxury features like a 360-degree camera, special exterior trim, genuine wood inserts, unique wheels and more. This grade is also available with diesel and the most powerful petrol engine and comes with the automatic transmission only.

Regardless of what trim level you choose, your CX-5 will come with an extensive safety package that will include rear parking sensors, lane-keep assist, blind-spot monitoring system, stability control, rear-cross traffic alert and more. Higher trim levels will have a 360-degree camera, front sensors and adaptive cruise control.

The Interior

Since the CX-5 is a compact family SUV, it is essential to review the interior, and we are glad that Mazda managed to refresh and improve it in last restyling without losing its elegance. Most competitors in the segment try to wow the customers with bulky interiors, enormous screens and multiple buttons. However, in its quest for sporty elegance, Mazda went the other way. The interior is focused, with an excellent driving position, clear dials, and uncluttered controls. Such precision is welcomed in this day and age and leaves the drive concentrated on the driving rather than finding his way amongst tens of buttons and switches. The material quality is good, and the cabin really looks luxurious in upper specs.

Of course, we cannot talk about the interior without mentioning the boot, and in CX-5, it is a bit smaller than the competitors. With all five seats up, you will have 522 litres of usable space, which is more than enough for everyday use. However, if you really want to use CX-5 to move stuff, then you will be glad to know that if you fold down the rear seats, you will get up to 1,340 litres.

The Conclusion

Having a distinctive model amongst the tens of similar cars in the crowded compact SUV segment is a success. Mazda CX-5 is such a car. Recognisable, good to drive, well-equipped and spacious enough for everyday duties. Even its price is acceptable, and the range starts at $32,190 and ends at $53,680 for a fully-loaded CX-5 Akera. However, despite being unique, cool-looking and dynamic, CX-5 still shows its age mainly with the lack of modern automatic transmission or DSG unit and latest features. But, sales figures show that this is still a strong contender and that the buyers recognise its qualities over its flaws.

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Feb 25, 2022 11:26 AM

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