View Full Version : Test drove CX-5 GT, my impressions

02-24-2012, 03:49 PM
Interior: The interior of the CX-5, especially the GT trim feels like Audi A4, nothing feels cheap made. I personally liked the dash and indicators, they seems like AMOLED display, very plan and simple easy to read. The satnav is an option as well as the HID. Overall im really impressed with the build quality.

Driving impression:

I'm impressed with the handling, the car feels very rigid on tight turn, a lot less body roll than all other suvs ive driven. It just stick on the pavement on tight turn. I can feel the spirit of mazda sports car in it. The extra 6th gear AUTO transmission gives 2500rpm cruising on the high way at 75mph, 2000rpm @ 60mph. The road noise is almost no existent, every time you pass on a bump you can feel it but you cant hear it. The transmission shifts like a dual clutch transmission, actually they made the TCC clutch engage early rather than relying the torque converter slips. It feels like the engine is connected to the transmission just like a manual gearbox. I finally found a parking spot covered with snow, turned the traction control off, try to have some awd powerslide fun, it needs a lot of throttle input to break the rear wheel traction in first gear, so yes, the car is underpowered on 155hp 2.0L engine IMO, but who actually buy this suv for powersliding? I didnt check alot on the fuel economy though, I remember going 80mph uphill and the actual fuel consumption was 10L per 100km, its awesome for a awd suv.

02-24-2012, 08:34 PM
thanks for the info

Would love to test one out

03-03-2012, 02:00 PM
I just test-drove a CX-5 Touring AWD and my thoughts echo yours. Road noise is greatly suppressed compared to my Mazda5. The CX-5 has a much smoother ride than the 5, too, but I was surprised by a bit of choppiness on the highway that I had not expected. The 6AT had a bit of lag in first gear from a stop, reminding me of the DSG in the Focus, but it wasn't nearly as pronounced or annoying. I also clocked just over 2,000 rpm at 60 mph. I was watching the instant fuel economy readout during my drive: cruising at 60 mph the CX-5 was rock solid showing 40 mpg. Driving on surface streets I was usually in the low to mid 20s, though I did see in the 14-15 range from a standstill going up a hill, but that's to be expected.

The engine felt fine to me. I drove the heaviest model CX-5 at 3426 pounds, with the moonroof, and it responded the same or better than my Mazda5. I'm coming from a vehicle that has roughly the same horsepower (157) but slightly more torque (163) while weighing more (3457 pounds). The Sky-AT shifted nicely, not harshly but noticeably. It was a different feeling of shifting than my Mazda5, which for the most part is less noticeable but slower shifting. The engine itself sounded substantially better than my Mazda5's 2.5, which even has a Corksport intake. The 2.5 is a pretty coarse lump.

At 6'2" I fit in my Mazda5 but I would like a bit more seat travel. The CX-5 has much more front seat travel, so much that I can fully extend my legs out in front of me. I fit in the rear seat just fine, though the headroom is less than in the Mazda5. I had plenty of it but I noticed the difference. I liked the 40/20/40 split seat and I especially liked the rear latch release in the cargo area for folding the seats forward. That's a really useful feature, if the seats would always fold down without having to fiddle with the headrests and front seats. I'm sure I could figure out the perfect arrangement if I owned one but as it stands I had to adjust the second-row headrests and the travel of the first-row seats to get things to lie down correctly.

The interior materials are nicer than my Mazda5, though still not as nice as I had expected. The dash is soft-touch, the door fabric looks and feels good, the seat material is attractive and feels sturdy, the front seats are very nicely bolstered, but the trim at the top of the door/bottom of the window is hard and doesn't look that great. I don't really care, but it is a point of contention for most auto reviewers. The sight lines out of the CX-5 are decent, but the visibility isn't as good as in my Mazda5. The windows are bigger than in many contemporary cars but smaller than the Mazda5. The belt line is higher than the Mazda5, which compresses the windows. You sit up higher in the CX-5 than in the Mazda5, though, so that helps to compensate. (Ground clearance is 8.5 vs. 5.6 inches by the way.)

I took a couple pictures for comparison. Not as many as I would like but they'll work for now.



CX-5 cargo area with torque wrench for scale:

Mazda5 cargo area with torque wrench for scale:

03-03-2012, 04:40 PM
I currently own a mazda5 and am curious about how it compares to the cx-5. Is there a noticeable difference in cargo space between the two?

03-03-2012, 06:08 PM
The cargo areas are very similar in capacity but differently shaped. The variation in shape and capacity is not that much, though. I think the biggest differences relate to deck height and then overall interior height. The CX-5 has three inches more ground clearance and is two inches taller than the Mazda5. The load floor of the CX-5 therefore sits higher than the Mazda5. The Mazda5 also has that small cargo tray in the back above the spare tire, which the CX-5 doesn't have. You simply lift up the rear floor to find the spare tire.

03-05-2012, 11:25 AM
Thanks for taking the time to post those pics of the side-by-sides. Great information and review!

03-05-2012, 03:33 PM
I test drove a CX-5 Touring last week and have to echo everyone else's impressions. Fit and finish were very good, better than my 06 Mazda 3s, and almost Audi/BMW quality. The interior reminded me a lot of my Mazda 3 rather than the new 3, which I think is a good thing. The blind-spot warning has to be the coolest thing I've seen on a new car. Very handy, and it actually works. The cloth seats were comfortable and supportive, and visibility was good, aside from the massive window sticker on the rear left window.

My only hesitation is with climbing ability at altitude. I live in Denver, and we took the car up I-70 all the way to Lookout Mountain. The motor really had to work, at least as hard as my 3, and I had to downshift to 4th and 5th at times to get some real movement. And that was with only two other people (my fiancee and the salesman) in the car, and no cargo. I know that gasoline engines tend to suffer at altitude, so I'm concerned how the climbing would be at 9000 feet instead of 5000. This makes me want to wait for the diesel, if it indeed will come to the US. Did anyone else experience this?

That aside, the handling felt almost exactly like my 3, which was great. Tight steering, strong brakes, no real body roll. That chassis is amazing. And the auto-stick works great. Shifts were quick and the shifter felt solid.

[edited for spelling]

03-05-2012, 03:50 PM
Did anyone doing a test drive see the black/sand interior color? Are the dealers getting any of these yet?

03-05-2012, 05:10 PM
That aside, the handling felt almost exactly like my 3, which was great. Tight steering, strong brakes, no real body roll. That chassis is amazing. And the auto-stick works great. Shifts were quick and the shifter felt solid.
[edited for spelling]

Completely agreed. I have a 2005 Mazda 3, and I reckon the feel of the drive is far more Mazda 3 than Mazda CX-7 (for example).

I've heard that this might have a lot to do with attempting to have it feel this way, and flogging the car beside a Mazda 3 at Mazda's Laguna Seca circuit. The CX-5 was tweaked to a point where it was beating the Mazda 3 in lap times. Amazing!

03-08-2012, 02:41 PM
I test drove a touring model last week, and thought the handling and suspension was great. Coming from a 2002 turbo jetta, the cx-5 felt a little slow but overall though it looks to be my next car. I did notice on the test drive that the side mirrors theseves within the housing vibrated quite badly at highway speeds and the center console was loose side to side around the shifter. Is this a common issue, or variability in build quality.

Antonio DiMarco
03-09-2012, 03:27 PM
It's not uncommon for small fit and finish issues to occur with a new model. Until manufacturing yields even out there probably will be some niggling quality issues like the ones you noticed. By comparison a GT and Touring model I sat in felt well-screwed together.