So long, Honda. Hello, Mazda!

:
Texas
:
'19 MX-5, '20 CX-5
The short version...

I've owned 31 automobiles since 1989 including 11 new Hondas since 2006. My Honda experience started off great, but since 2016, each new Honda I bought had more problems than the last. Most recently, I had a 2019 Ridgeline that met the requirements for Texas lemon law based on the number of days it spent being repaired. Honda refused to provide any trade assistance to get me into new Ridgeline and I was unwilling to pay the full trade difference to a company that demonstrated no interest whatsoever in retaining me as a loyal, repeat buyer and brand advocate. Last week, I traded it for a new 2020 CX-5 Signature. I got KBB book value for the Ridgeline and bought the CX-5 for 15% below MSRP.

The CX-5 reminds me very much of the 2019 Acura RDX Advance I owned for a few months, but without the problems. I never paid much attention to Mazda until I started automotive writing a few years ago as a hobby and driving many different vehicles. Last Fall, I purchased a new 2019 MX-5 Miata Grand Touring that helped make the decision to put another Mazda in my garage an easy one. I've been working on a review of the CX-5 which I'll finish and publish in the next week or so.

IMG_0915.JPG
 

Antoine

Administrator
I never paid much attention to Mazda until I started automotive writing a few years ago as a hobby and driving many different vehicles. Last Fall, I purchased a new 2019 MX-5 Miata Grand Touring that helped make the decision to put another Mazda in my garage an easy one.
We're glad you did...Welcome! Great intro and pic, thanks for joining Mazdas247 and enjoy the Forums!
 
:
Phoenix
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2020 CX5 signature
I don't know if the 2019 RDX I teseted had the documented lag problem but I find my Signature seems notably quicker off the line (though not so much once going). What is your impression of the off the line get-up compared to the RDX?
 
:
Texas
:
'19 MX-5, '20 CX-5
I don't know if the 2019 RDX I teseted had the documented lag problem but I find my Signature seems notably quicker off the line (though not so much once going). What is your impression of the off the line get-up compared to the RDX?

To me, the CX-5 doesn't feel as quick as the RDX even though instrumented testing proves that it is quicker. I attribute this to a few things:

1. The Mazda's 2.5T starts running out of steam past 5,000 RPM (and the transmission upshifts well before redline since there's no point in going there) whereas Honda's 2.0T pulls hard all the way to its 6,800 RPM reline. Seeing, hearing, and feeling the 2.5T "give up" by upshifting before redline makes it seem like I'm being cheated, even though it's actually slower if you upshift at redline.

2. First gear in Honda's 10-speed automatic transmission is really "low", so you feel more jerk off the line which gives the impression of being quicker.

3. Mazda's 2.5T pulls hard while in boost, but there is a significant interruption in power during upshifts. Honda's 2.0T has a more constant power delivery.

According to Car and Driver instrumented testing of a 2019 CX-5 Signature and 2019 RDX A-Spec, the CX-5 is faster in every metric:

0-60 MPH: 6.2 vs. 6.6 seconds
0-100 MPH: 16.7 vs. 18.1 seconds
Top speed (governer limited): 130 vs. 113 MPH
5-60 MPH: 6.7 vs. 7.0 seconds
30-50 MPH: 3.5 vs. 3.9 seconds
50-70 MPH: 4.6 vs. 5.2 seconds
1/4-mile: 14.8 @ 95 MPH vs. 15.2 @ 93 MPH
70-0: 173 vs. 177 feet

So, the CX-5 is faster even with 22 less horsepower (but 30 more lb-ft of torque), gets better fuel economy, and manages to do this with "only" six gears.

One area where the RDX shines is with its more advanced AWD system. Mazda's AWD system uses two open differentials with a single clutch pack between front and rear, so it's effectively two-wheel drive (one front wheel and one rear wheel) and relies on a technique of braking the rear wheel with less grip in order to transfer torque to the wheel with more traction. Acura's AWD system uses two clutch packs - one for each rear wheel - and can send power to both rear wheels at the same time or just to the outer wheel during turns. The rear wheels are also overdriven by 2.7% relative to the front. This gives the RDX a handling advantage when accelerating through turns and a traction advantage on slick surfaces.
 

Chris_Top_Her

Banned
Moderator
Contributor
:
San Antonio, Texas
:
'15 CX-5 Miata AWD
To me, the CX-5 doesn't feel as quick as the RDX even though instrumented testing proves that it is quicker. I attribute this to a few things:

1. The Mazda's 2.5T starts running out of steam past 5,000 RPM (and the transmission upshifts well before redline since there's no point in going there) whereas Honda's 2.0T pulls hard all the way to its 6,800 RPM reline. Seeing, hearing, and feeling the 2.5T "give up" by upshifting before redline makes it seem like I'm being cheated, even though it's actually slower if you upshift at redline.

2. First gear in Honda's 10-speed automatic transmission is really "low", so you feel more jerk off the line which gives the impression of being quicker.

3. Mazda's 2.5T pulls hard while in boost, but there is a significant interruption in power during upshifts. Honda's 2.0T has a more constant power delivery.

According to Car and Driver instrumented testing of a 2019 CX-5 Signature and 2019 RDX A-Spec, the CX-5 is faster in every metric:

0-60 MPH: 6.2 vs. 6.6 seconds
0-100 MPH: 16.7 vs. 18.1 seconds
Top speed (governer limited): 130 vs. 113 MPH
5-60 MPH: 6.7 vs. 7.0 seconds
30-50 MPH: 3.5 vs. 3.9 seconds
50-70 MPH: 4.6 vs. 5.2 seconds
1/4-mile: 14.8 @ 95 MPH vs. 15.2 @ 93 MPH
70-0: 173 vs. 177 feet

So, the CX-5 is faster even with 22 less horsepower (but 30 more lb-ft of torque), gets better fuel economy, and manages to do this with "only" six gears.

One area where the RDX shines is with its more advanced AWD system. Mazda's AWD system uses two open differentials with a single clutch pack between front and rear, so it's effectively two-wheel drive (one front wheel and one rear wheel) and relies on a technique of braking the rear wheel with less grip in order to transfer torque to the wheel with more traction. Acura's AWD system uses two clutch packs - one for each rear wheel - and can send power to both rear wheels at the same time or just to the outer wheel during turns. The rear wheels are also overdriven by 2.7% relative to the front. This gives the RDX a handling advantage when accelerating through turns and a traction advantage on slick surfaces.

Yea, the open diffs are kinda poopy, but I've ben able to improve their function by adding bigger front and rear sway bars, along with other suspension/chassis mods to keep the weight transfer down
 

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