Crossover vehicles are a comfortable alternative between an SUV and a sedan, offering more space than the average car and a more compact design than an SUV. Crossovers have their usefulness and are popular with smaller families and others who want space, but not excessive space that won’t likely get utilized. Automakers have engineered some fine crossover vehicles in the past several years and one that continues to improve over time is the Mazda CX-5.
The 2017 Mazda CX-5 is offered in four different trim levels: Sport, Touring, Grand Select, and Grand Touring. Starting with the more basic Sport and continuing through the Grand Touring, each trim level offers a few more bells and whistles and creature comforts than the one before it. Unlike with other vehicles, the Mazda CX-5 trim levels are not light- years apart in what they offer the consumer. There are, in fact, only a handful of differences and best of all, the price differential between each is less extreme than it is with other vehicles, as I will explain later in this article.
Stepping inside the Mazda CX-5, drivers and passengers are greeted with a good deal of comfort and safety. I didn’t get the claustrophobic feeling that I get in a smaller vehicle and I attribute this to the significant head room in both the front and rear seats. A push of the electronic start button, a few adjustments of the mirror, and I was on my way.
With the ride, one of the qualities I noticed right away was the smoothness. The Mazda CX- 5 seems to coast along effortlessly, almost like its floating down the road. Along with that, there is so little noise on the inside of the vehicle that, at some points, I wondered if the motor had shut off. Unless you have the air or the music cranked, it can get so tranquil on the inside that it does, indeed, seem like the motor is no longer engaged.
The other standout with the Mazda CX- 5 is safety. There is a rear backup camera and a blind spot monitor to make sure the driver is aware of surroundings at all times. Many people are already familiar with backup cameras, but the blind spot monitor is something newer. We all know the potential safety hazards when it comes to blind spots: those areas on the sides of a vehicle that your mirrors do not pick up on when another vehicle or other object is present. With the Mazda CX- 5, the blind spot monitor will beep when necessary, warning the driver that there is another car in this region. It doesn’t beep at you continuously. It only beeps if it senses you are about to change lanes.
But the safety measures don’t end there. Another unique feature I like is the radio/sound system control. There is an auxiliary control down close to the arm rest. This keeps you from getting distracted as much as you would if you reached for the dashboard control and it is intended to keep your eyes on the road. I used it quite a bit when I drove the Mazda CX- 5 and found it effective at keeping me focused. Once you learn the routine to make it work properly (turn the knob right or left to switch channels, then press to accept a new channel), you will find that you can do it without looking.
Another cool feature with the Mazda CX- 5 is the heads up display. Your current speed is projected onto the windshield directly in front of you, as you drive. It will even start to flash at you if you are exceeding the speed limit by more than 5 miles per hour. Once again, this shows that the Mazda CX- 5 is committed to keeping you and your passengers as safe as possible. With the speed showing on the windshield, you don’t need to look down to check your speed. The result is a safer driving experience for you, your family, and those with whom you share the road.
It Just Feels Right
Mazda CX- 5 is a fun vehicle that handles well, is reasonably comfortable for a smaller crossover SUV, and is engineered with safety in mind. When I drove this vehicle for the first time, I immediately noticed all of the safety measures but I didn’t find them burdensome or limiting in any way. After only a few miles of driving, I developed a quick appreciation for what Mazda and its team of engineers had in mind when they designed this vehicle. They wanted something that would keep people safe but also something that was fun to drive with a comfortable ride. They succeeded on all levels.
Cost is often a consideration when choosing a vehicle but this is, once again, where the Mazda CX- 5 shines. Even the Sport trim level is reasonably priced, selling in the mid $20k range, making it one of the more affordable vehicles in its class. Another fact that I find appealing is that there is relatively little price differential among the four trim levels. With other vehicles, the top trim level can sometimes cost 50 percent more than the base level but with the CX- 5, the difference between the basic and most luxurious trim level is only about 20 percent. And anyone who has experienced the Mazda CX- 5 is almost certain to agree that this crossover vehicle looks like a more expensive vehicle than it is. The outside appearance invokes that of a luxury import vehicle even though it is priced lower than the majority of cars on the market.
Crossover vehicles are becoming increasingly popular with families and others who want more space without committing to a large SUV. Mazda CX- 5 is a solid crossover vehicle all- around, with good comfort, solid handling, and important safety measures to keep driver and passengers secure. It’s a nice vehicle and with such an affordable price, it is definitely a crossover to consider for your next new vehicle purchase.
MSP was provided with a loan of the Mazda CX-5 in order to provide you with our thoughts and experiences. All opinions expressed are 100% our own.