Mazda looks to next-gen CX-5 for a lift

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2016.5 CX-5 GT AWD
Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love my CX-5 and have zero regrets about owning it. That said, when I get it in it (or others get in it for that matter), it just doesn't feel "premium". Why? I think the single biggest reason is that it's not quiet inside. IMHO opinion, all other things being equal (interior design and layout, quality materials used, etc.), that's the single biggest factor in what makes a vehicle just feel "premium". Think about the last time you got in a quiet vehicle; didn't it affect your sense of "premiumness" (if that's a word)? I know that improvement have been made in the 2017, but not having been in one yet, it remains to be seen if it's a step up or not. Just my 2.

I would say that's more subjective than anything else, depends upon what an individual buyer wants, and also how one defends "premium" and "luxury". Typical "luxury" type-vehicles do everything they can to isolate you from the driving experience. But in a vehicle that doesn't, does that mean it's not or can't be "premium"? That would have to be up to the consumer to decide. To me, a vehicle just being "quiet" and "well-isolated" from road and wind noise doesn't necessarily mean I think of it as a "premium" vehicle.

For example, before I bought my CX-5, I test drove a 2017 Ford Escape Titanium for a few hours. That vehicle is very well isolated from road, wind, and engine noise (I test drove the 2.0L turbo EcoBoost motor, and I couldn't even hear it while flooring it), but in no way would I consider it "more premium" than the CX-5. Materials and fit and finish play a bigger role, IMO. The Escape is drab, even chintzy, inside. The center console armrest is so light and cheap that I felt like it would snap off in a year or two. Piano gloss plastics in high-traffic areas on the dash (near the infotainment buttons and AC Controls) were already scratched up with micro-abrasions. The CX-5 I feel oozes quality in comparison.
 

craigo

Contributor
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2014 CX-5 GT FWD, 2015 Mazda 3 Touring
I would say that's more subjective than anything else, depends upon what an individual buyer wants, and also how one defends "premium" and "luxury". Typical "luxury" type-vehicles do everything they can to isolate you from the driving experience. But in a vehicle that doesn't, does that mean it's not or can't be "premium"? That would have to be up to the consumer to decide. To me, a vehicle just being "quiet" and "well-isolated" from road and wind noise doesn't necessarily mean I think of it as a "premium" vehicle.

For example, before I bought my CX-5, I test drove a 2017 Ford Escape Titanium for a few hours. That vehicle is very well isolated from road, wind, and engine noise (I test drove the 2.0L turbo EcoBoost motor, and I couldn't even hear it while flooring it), but in no way would I consider it "more premium" than the CX-5. Materials and fit and finish play a bigger role, IMO. The Escape is drab, even chintzy, inside. The center console armrest is so light and cheap that I felt like it would snap off in a year or two. Piano gloss plastics in high-traffic areas on the dash (near the infotainment buttons and AC Controls) were already scratched up with micro-abrasions. The CX-5 I feel oozes quality in comparison.

Once again, I think it is a credit to Mazda that people seriously compare a sub-30k vehicle to BMW, Lexus, Volvo etc.
 

Kaps

Contributor
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CX-5 Touring 2016.5
Once again, I think it is a credit to Mazda that people seriously compare a sub-30k vehicle to BMW, Lexus, Volvo etc.

This is what I have said many times.
The Rav4 redesign came and Toyota said we like to sell 30% LE, 40% XLE, and 30% Premium trim vehicles
For Mazda those numbers seem totally reversed. If I see my dealer here 75 GT, 25 Tourings and 11 Sport trims. It has been that way for a few months.
Mazda just sells GTs a lot more than Touring / Sport imo. this is an indicator they can make 2017 premium and up the price a bit and people will still pay for it.

I might get bombed on this but it seems Mazda is snapping at entry level premium rather than CRV type segment.
 
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2021 CX-9 Sig
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2014 CX-5 GT
Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love my CX-5 and have zero regrets about owning it. That said, when I get it in it (or others get in it for that matter), it just doesn't feel "premium". Why? I think the single biggest reason is that it's not quiet inside. IMHO opinion, all other things being equal (interior design and layout, quality materials used, etc.), that's the single biggest factor in what makes a vehicle just feel "premium". Think about the last time you got in a quiet vehicle; didn't it affect your sense of "premiumness" (if that's a word)? I know that improvement have been made in the 2017, but not having been in one yet, it remains to be seen if it's a step up or not. Just my 2.

Agree 100%. The wind and road noise is terrible in the CX-5 but so is the fit and finish. It is fun to drive but in many ways, the car reminds me a lot of my old MG Midgets and MGBs!
 
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2016 Mazda CX-5 Touring
Hyundai has a ton of fleet sales. Keep that in mind. Used Hyundai market is well - watered down. You can get a base 16 Sonata hybrid with 20k miles for 15-16K. Do you know what base Camry hybrid goes for that ? 2013 with 35k miles.
So yeah Hyundai has done a lot of sales partly because folks in the US always want to keep up with the Jones's - buying beyond their means. Kia / Hyundai is a great way to get a new car with good features for 10% or more discount than others. Ford is in a similar boat.

Back on topic - I dont think Mazda will sell the same numbers as Toyota or Honda in near future. Over a few years maybe it will compete. Right now - it sells well for where it is at. Surprising to see sales of 6 and CX-9 so low.
Perceptions in US will change over time.

Earlier this year I traded my 2013 Sonata for my 2016 CX-5. I was SHOCKED that KBB gave my 52,000-mile Sonata a trade-in value of only $9,000 - an otherwise above average condition vehicle. I had it less than three years and it lost more than half its value?! Added to that, a problem with the engine had just been found which led to premature wear, and Hyundai extended the drive-train warranty for original owners as a settlement to a lawsuit. I was a Hyundai fan in the beginning, but lost my enthusiasm over the long-haul.
 

Kaps

Contributor
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CX-5 Touring 2016.5
Earlier this year I traded my 2013 Sonata for my 2016 CX-5. I was SHOCKED that KBB gave my 52,000-mile Sonata a trade-in value of only $9,000 - an otherwise above average condition vehicle. I had it less than three years and it lost more than half its value?! Added to that, a problem with the engine had just been found which led to premature wear, and Hyundai extended the drive-train warranty for original owners as a settlement to a lawsuit. I was a Hyundai fan in the beginning, but lost my enthusiasm over the long-haul.

lol that is what my 2013 Corolla base trim is worth after 50k miles
 
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Mazda CX-5 Akera
I can't speak for the US market but I get the impression that people just buy Honda because its an established brand and probably don't even test drive and compare other vehicle makes to it. It's like they've already made up their mind, they want to buy a Honda perceiving its of good quality. Here in Australia, Mazda sales are way ahead of Honda which has gone downhill drastically. The Honda's we get are mostly built in Thailand and Mazda's all come from Japan. Subjectively Honda's designs have really gone wayward with either the front end or rear end looking too busy not to mention the drive with CVT transmissions and lack of safety tech. The only strong points are it's great cabin space but the equivalent Mazda's are way ahead of the Honda in nearly all other departments. Read reviews of Mazda v. Honda around the world and the Mazda more often than not come out the winner. I think Mazda dealerships in the US needs to improve to be more successful in the country.
 

Natey

Moderator
Contributor
Patron
Here's MY two cents. (cabpatch)

Bring back something that people WANT TO DRIVE and the sales will go up. If you build it, they will come.
Why compete with mini SUVs like CRVs, RAV4s and Foresters when you once owned the sporty compact car segment? Make something for under 25k that can out-corner my MSP and I'll think about buying another Mazda. As it is, I'd rather look for a clean unmolested EVO 8 or JCW Cooper than anything Mazda has to offer. The world has enough SUVs that get stuck in the sand, ya know? IMO the CX-5 is the best looking one, but it's a sliding scale when you park it next to a Spirit R RX-7.

Sucks too, because they were such a force to be reckoned with at one point. Winning Lemans with a Rotary engine, the NA Miata's introduction and spec series, etc. Does anyone remember the 323GTR? I still do.
 
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2016.5 Mazda CX-5 Touring FWD
Here's MY two cents. (cabpatch)

Bring back something that people WANT TO DRIVE and the sales will go up. If you build it, they will come.
Why compete with mini SUVs like CRVs, RAV4s and Foresters when you once owned the sporty compact car segment? Make something for under 25k that can out-corner my MSP and I'll think about buying another Mazda. As it is, I'd rather look for a clean unmolested EVO 8 or JCW Cooper than anything Mazda has to offer. The world has enough SUVs that get stuck in the sand, ya know? IMO the CX-5 is the best looking one, but it's a sliding scale when you park it next to a Spirit R RX-7.

Sucks too, because they were such a force to be reckoned with at one point. Winning Lemans with a Rotary engine, the NA Miata's introduction and spec series, etc. Does anyone remember the 323GTR? I still do.

You, and people like you, are a very small target market. That isn't to say that handling and drivability don't matter, because they do, but you're looking for a race car to have fun in, while mostly everyone else is looking for cars to haul families, commute, or be utilitarian in some way. I agree that the RX7 and Miata are great cars, but if Mazda wants to gain market share they have to appeal to the masses by competing on terms the masses care about; e.g. Mpg, cargo volume, fit and finish, reliability, value, and price.