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.