Mazda CX-5

The new for 2018 Mazda CX-5 sits on the old platform, the wheelbase is the same size, but it’s 10mm longer, 35mm lower and much sharper-looking thanks to smaller lights, a longer bonnet and wider grille. Mazda, with their Kodo design philosophy, believe small design improvements add up to make a big difference with the focus being on all-round refinement. We can buy into this philosophy as the CX-5 is a much more appealing proposition. The seating is comfortable and its easy to find a good driving position,  the suspension is a little on the firm side so potholes can be jarring, particularly with the larger 19 inch tyres, but out on the open road it’s great – with nicely weighted steering, very little side to side movement and it can raise a smile on the more twisty roads too, comparable to the Seat Ateca and Ford Kuga.

 

The major changes to the CX-5 are externally, the aforementioned larger grille and slim head and tail lights. The interior of the CX-5 looks much as before, but feels very different thanks to Mazda’s use of higher-grade materials. Surfaces are pleasantly tactile while discreet chrome highlights convey a real sense of quality. There’s up-to-date technology, too, including a prominent seven-inch infotainment screen. A conveniently located rotary controller avoids you having to reach to operate it and smudging the screen.

 

 

Mazda CX-5 passengers will find interior space to be more than adequate, although the 506-litre boot is a little smaller than the 615 litres the VW Tiguan can provide if its adjustable rear seats are slid fully forwards. If the boot frustrates, though, it’ll soon be forgiven when you experience how quiet the Mazda is inside. Engine noise is subdued and carefully considered sound-deadening blocks the worst of the rumble from the car’s wide tyres.

The CX-5 has two trim levels, SE-L and Sport. SE-L has 17 inch Alloy wheels, 7 inch infotainment screen with built in Sat nav and DAB but is without Apple Carplay/Android Auto but this is coming to 2019 models we understand. Also on SE-L cars is LED headlights, dual-zone climate control, autonomous emergency braking, cruise control, start-stop button, front and rear parking sensors, rain sensing wipers and privacy glass. Upgrading to Sport Nav adds racier 19-inch wheels, leather seats with electric adjustment and heating for those in the front, heated steering wheel, colour head-up display, a 10-speaker Bose stereo, power tailgate, traffic-sign recognition, keyless entry and wiper defrosting, when the part of the front windscreen where the wipers sit is heated. One point of note is that the CX-5 can feel quite dark inside, Sport trim customers can upgrade to ‘Stone’ leather seats for £200.

 

The Mazda CX-5 is only available this quarter with the 2.2 litre diesel in either two or four wheel drive with 148bhp or four wheel drive only with 173bhp. The 148bhp unit is an excellent choice, 0-62 mph in 9.4 seconds and a claimed economy of 56.5 miles per gallon as a front wheel drive six speed manual, or 10.1 to 62mph and 50.4 mpg as a six speed automatic. This engine with all wheel drive will cut the economy to 52.3 mph as a manual or 48.7 as an auto. The larger output car, 173bhp, is a higher tuned version of the smaller engine as both have sequential twin turbos, the all wheel drive only larger engine increases the torque from an already excellent 380nm to 420nm and is more powerful than is reflected in the 0-62 time difference of 0.4 second to 9.0 for the manual car. Economy is the same as the smaller car with all wheel drive. The CX-5 has a braked tow weight of 2000 – 2100kg (Auto 4×4) and is well regarded within the Caravan press.

Front Wheel Drive:

Spring Best Buy – Mazda CX-5 SE-L  2.2 litre Diesel (148 bhp) Manual  –  £1699 Advance payment (£617 wpms) or £1999 (£917 wpms) as an Automatic (Add £300 for Sport Trim)

All Wheel Drive:

Spring Best Buy – Mazda CX-5 SE-L  2.2 litre Diesel (148 bhp) Manual 4WD –  £1999 Advance payment (£917 wpms) or £2229 (£1147 wpms) as an automatic

Spring Best Buy – Mazda CX-5 Sport  2.2 litre diesel (173 bhp) Manual 4WD –  £2999 Advance payment (£1917 wpms) or£3699 (£2617 wpms) as an Automatic