2016 Mazda CX 5 (1121)

Overview:

This is the 2016 Mazda CX 5 Grand Touring AWD. Well it is clear that a company who listens to their customers and reviewing journalists will find favor in their products.

In this case Mazda has been listening as many have been saying the CX-5 crossover needed more power. So we now have 184-hp, 2.5-liter I-4 engine.

For the 2016 model year, the automaker is addressing two other gripes about the CX-5: its dull interior and dated infotainment system. I didn’t happen to share the interior issues with others but must admit I’ve not been happy with the high tech interface. Namely the Nav system and the Bluetooth connectivity. It just isn’t intuitive enough for my taste. I’m not making a big deal of it because my criteria is that it is good if I “don’t” have to look at the operations manual to figure out those things.

General Information: It is assembled in Hiroshima, Japan; Parts – US/Canadian 0%, Japan 95%   Engine and transmission – Japan; Classification is Small SUV. Cars from Mazda: CX 3, CX 5, CX 9, Mazda 2, Mazda 3, Mazda 5, Mazda 6, MX-5 Miata.

Handling & Performance:

No complaints here since this is the perfect size for those in need of a smaller SUV. The power has been increased as noted and is adequate to effectively compete with the small crowd of SUVs in this segment. Personally I don’t mind the smaller engines in some of the competition because the smaller plants employ turbochargers. In fact 6 of those listed are 1.6 to 2.0 liter engines but all 6 are Turbos. I prefer the Turbo but had no problem with performance. It was up to the demands of open road freeway driving.

Styling:

All in class / segment of Small SUVs are very similar in outward appearance. I think they’re all equally good or bad, depending on your taste. Nothing out of the ordinary to write home about these listed below. In my view they are just not all that exciting while not boring either. Simply nice, safe designs that won’t offend anyone. This is the trend in the social order of the day – “Political Correctness” out of control. God forbid we should offend anyone’s sensibilities.

I grew up when men were men and women were women and cars had distinct character. Today everything is uni-sex and uni-design. Sad but I don’t care all that much really. Performance is far more important and if the price of good mileage is a little uniformity I’ll go along with the program and not complain too much.

Fit and Finish:

Boringly perfect. Anyone who has driven cars of the 1950s through 1980s know that assembly techniques are light years ahead of earlier year cars.

Actually large or wide gaps were necessary in olden day cars and trucks. It was the only way to keep different components from rubbing together. It didn’t help all that much and thus squeeks and rattles were a common sound then. That’s where the term a bucket of bolts came from.

Cost:

Cars today are unbelievably well priced and this Mazda is no exception. Again, relative to cars from prior eras, today’s cars can be considered bargains.

Conveniences and comfort:

In this segment all are very similar in their compliment of high tech essentials. Not all, but most have the Bluetooth hands free feature and by the way it is a must in today’s world. Keyless entry and push button start are both essentials in my book and I suspect eventually all will have the feature. Other important elements include cruise control, blind spot detection and rear view cameras for safety.

Consumer Recommendations:

In the field of options this Mazda falls right behind the Kia and Hyundai (same company), and Subaru. Subaru is the king of AWD vehicles and Kia and Hyundai are my favorite picks. They also have the best warranty of all in class.

Recognized Competition:

Mazda CX 5 $30,000, Subaru Forester $30,000, Hyundai Tucson $31,000, Kia Sportage $30,000, Mitsubishi Outlander $28,000, Nissan Rogue $30,000, Volkswagen Tiguan $32,000, Ford Escape $31,000, Lincoln MKC $34,000, Jeep Patriot $25,000.

Good News:

Good value, quality and comfort.

Bad News:

Electronics not to my liking / Nav and Bluetooth are not as user friendly as I think is necessary and many others are better.

Standard Equipment:

2.5 liter 4-cylinder 184 hp engine, All Wheel Drive, auto transmission, 19” alloy wheels, fixed intermittent rear wiper, rain sensing windshield wipers, heated power mirrors with turn signals, tilt and telescopic steering column, leather wrapped steering wheel with audio, cruise and Bluetooth controls, power windows and locks, leather trimmed sport seats, 8-way power drivers seat, manual passenger seat lifter, heated front seats, keyless entry system, electronic parking brake, LATCH child safety seat anchors, anti-theft engine immobilizer, tire pressure monitor, blind spot monitor, 4-wheel ABS power disc brakes, electric power assisted steering, front and rear stabilizer bars, rear privacy glass, auto headlights, fog lights, daytime running lights, roof spoiler with shark fin antenna, power moon roof, push button engine start, dual zone auto climate control, Bose AM/FM/CD/MP3/ Satellite HD Radio, auxiliary jack, 2-USB ports, Bluetooth hands free phone/ Audio, 7: color touch screen display, multi-function commander control, rear view camera, dual illuminated vanity mirrors, 40/20/40 split fold down rear seat, rear seat center armrest, rear cross traffic alert, dynamic stability control, traction control, hill assist, front, side and front and rear side curtain air bags.

Gas Stats:

$2.99/ Gal avg. January 5, 2016

www.fueleconomy.gov

for more information.

24 City and 30 Highway MPG

Pricing:

MSRP $29,470.

Your comments are welcomed. My e-mail is joe@autolove.com
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