CX-5 a roomy, revved-up ride
My neighbors, a nice young couple who once enjoyed their Mazda CX-7, were understandably curious when they spotted the all-new CX-5 at my place.
“We read about that, but it looked smaller,” she said, hoisting her one-year-old as she suggested her reasoning for buying another model.
So I had the difficult and unfortunate task of explaining that, yes, it is shorter by 5 inches and has a wheelbase two inches shorter, too — but passenger space is practically the same, backseat legroom is 3 inches better, and cargo capacity is actually greater at 64.8 cubic feet with the rear seats down.
“Gee, we liked our CX-7,” she said, with a hint of remorse in her voice that she didn't do her homework first.
Truth is, the CX-7 brought Mazda limited success so it decided to get serious in the hottest SUV segment out there. The CX-5 is Mazda's first real entry into the compact SUV arena — if you put aside the old Tribute, which was just a rebadged Ford Escape.
And roominess is just part of the attraction of the CX-5: It is at or near the top in fuel economy, and it has a good dose of that “zoom-zoom” magic. Yeah, it's fun to drive.
Its EPA mileage rating is up to 26 in city driving, 35 highway. CX-5 rides on a new unibody, and it looks smoother and sleeker than the 7. The front end has a new grille that is more refined looking than the 7.
Under the hood, for all CX-5s, is Mazda's new SkyActiv 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine, which is surprisingly spunky.
All-wheel-drive is available on all trim levels, but you must get the 6-speed automatic transmission. The front-wheel-drive version offers the option of either the automatic or a 6-speed manual.
Riding on 19-inch wheels, CX-5 is nimble enough on corners and curves; it has a confident, solid feel around town and on the highway.
OK, it may not be the zoom-zoomiest coming from Mazda. But it is a nimble little SUV that will reward you at the gas pump.
Barry Spyker is an automotive writer for The Miami Herald.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Alibaba stock soars in frenetic trading debut
- Pa. unemployment rate rises to 5.8 percent
- Stocks drift amid Alibaba’s IPO drama
- Range Resources to pay $4.15M fine, close old gas drilling impoundments
- Cadillac faces SUV challenge
- McDonald’s to watch Chinese suppliers
- Home Depot breach probed
- Mylan CEO Bresch sets sights on growth
- UPMC buying New Castle-based Jameson Health System
- U.S. Steel to restructure Canadian subsidiary, halt 2 U.S. expansion projects
- Chevron gets first OK from Pa. sustainable drilling group