The Mazda CX-5 may be a large practical SUV, but it is also a very economical stylish and SUV that is enjoyable to drive.
The Mazda CX-5 comes with a choice of two engines, one diesel and one petrol option. The diesel option is the excellent 2.2 SKYACTIV-D with 150bhp while the petrol is the 2.0 SKYACTIV-G with 165bhp. The petrol may pack more power on paper, but the diesel is just as good of a performer and is the more economical option. Both engines are available with the choice of a 6-speed manual or automatic transmission with the option of two-wheel or four-wheel-drive.
The Mazda’s Skyactiv construction means it’s lightweight and more rigid. This is good news for handling as the CX-5’s steering is direct and precise. The powerful character of the diesel engine matches the CX-5 size well and offers a very refined ride coupled with the SUV’s smooth suspension. Despite the supple ride, the CX-5 is still good in the corners and body roll is kept well in check. It is as much fun as any of the smaller Mazda’s to drive with some of the MX-5 Roadster driving dynamics trickling through.
The CX-5 is available in three trim levels. These are Executive, Executive SE and Platinum. Whether you opt for the entry level SE or the top of the range Platinum, there is very little tech and toys that separate the two trim levels. As standard you get an electronic parking break, leather multi-function steering wheel and gear knob, 7 inch touch screen and trip computer. The top Platinum trim adds an auto dimming mirror, electric seats and a rear bench that folds down in three rather than two separate splits. One trim is a stylish as the other thanks to the excellent design and build quality of the CX-5.
The CX-5 is not only an SUV you would be happy to pull up and park outside a 5-star hotel in, but its interior styling and finish reflect this classiness too. The finish is to a standard you would expect from a premium German marque and the mixed use of leather stitched style materials and contrast metal inserts across the dash ooze appeal. The driver instruments are also backlit in a bright white, while the 7 inch touch screen that houses the infotainment system and smartphone connectivity is neatly blended into the top of the centre console.
The CX-5 scored the full five stars in the Euro NCAP safety test making it one of the safest SUV’s in its class. One reason for this is that Mazda do not skimp on the safety technology regardless of the trim level you go for on the CX-5. As standard you can expect six airbags, electronic stability control, tyre pressure monitor, hill start assist and an autonomous automatic emergency braking system. Lane assist and blind spot detection also come as standard.
The Mazda CX-5 is hugely practical and versatile with a large cabin that will fit five adults in comfort. Rear leg and headroom is ample too while the rear parcel shelf folds and can be lifted out to open the full back of the cabin up for storage of larger items. The rear doors open almost at a 90 degree angle making it very easy to get children in and out. There is loads of storage places in the cabin too with large door pockets, a good sized glovebox and a large cubby under the armrest. Boot space is good too at 503 litres. This can also be extended to 1620 litres by folding the rear seats forward.