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Thread: Who is towing with their CX-9?

  1. #31
    goes to eleven chuyler1's Avatar

    2013 CX9

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    My biggest concern with your post is "weight distribution system". Mazda technically does not offer nor feel obligated to warranty a vehicle with a class III hitch and as you may know the class II hitch Mazda does offer cannot be used with a weight distribution system. Although you aren't going to be adding a ton of weight to the back, these systems can put stress on the vehicle's frame. They are fine for body-on-frame vehicles like pickup trucks and SUVs built on truck platforms (Nissan XTerra, Toyota FJ, Jeep Wrangler, etc) but can cause problems with unibody vehicles like most crossover SUVs. Please consider how they work. They take weight off the rear wheels by passing it through the frame of the vehicle and applying it to the front wheels.

    Your best bet would be to keep the trailer under the rated 3,500lbs and the tongue weight under 350 lbs. If Mazda did their math right, you shouldn't see any excessive suspension droop with that weight. Also, be very careful about manufacturer's reported weights for trailers. They have a tendency to list the dry weight of the base model. Options can add 500+lbs and your food/supplies/gear will often add 500+lbs. We have a 16' Scamp. The website says 1,700lbs. It is 2,500 with gas, food, and gear (but without water). I haven't pulled it with the CX9 yet but I can report back in a few months once I've taken it on a few trips.

  2. #32
    Registered Member

    2014 Mazda CX-9 Touring AWD

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    Thanks for your input chuyler1. I'm still a little concerned about the weight of the trailer myself and will probably look for something smaller/lighter. The wife is dead set against a popup, but I say it's better than a tent!

  3. #33
    TomB

    2007 Mazda CX9 Grand Touring AWD

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    Brad,
    A couple of things I did for piece of mind, was weigh the trailer empty and disconnected on a Sunday morning at local Truck stop ($8), for me ~2880lbs leaving 620lb or so. I than stopped while on the way for a weekend trip loaded with myself, wife, kids, bikes gear etc, Weighed CX9 on two scales and 18RB on 3rd scale. This gave me axle loads. I have a 1000lb Sherline tongue scale (steep at ~$160) which I utilized to weigh Trailer loaded prior to hook up. With single axle you can move items around some to manipulate tongue weight. Usually around 320-340lbs for me, minimum sag and no sway. Quick calculation and you get nearly accurate figures for weights I have also messed around at truck scales with disconnecting weight distribution bars to see the difference in CX9 front and rear axle loads. Yes, wife and kids hate it, but usually combined with fill up and weighing vehicle is max 20minutes. Worth mentioning is that CX9 GVW is ~6000lbs, GCVW weight is ~8500lbs, unloaded vehicle weight is ~4500 pending model and options. SO 4500 Plus 3500trailer is 8000 leaving 500lbs for passengers etc. From the way the vehicle handles the 3500lb, I am very comfortable, will pull 4-5 and even (6th, not recommended) gear with tail wind at 65+mph, drops down to 3rd with strong head wind or long hills at ~3000rpm, note I have old 3.5L liter which gives up 25ftlbs of torque and a few HP to 3.7L.

  4. #34
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    2012 CX 9GT

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    I am glad to see many people pulling a trailer with the CX-9, but some of you are much braver than me. I did put a hitch on my and it has the towing package. I bought a 6'x9' flatbed trailer for my quads and the Mazda. I can tell you I will not pull anything heavier with the CX-9, the trailer loaded can handle 1500lbs and the trailer its self weighs 550lbs. I have had 2 full size quads on there (what it was made for) and the railer was just under 2000lbs total and the Mazda was gutless. I had to manually shift or it would shift too early, and before you say it I drive like an old man and am not a speedster. I don't drive faster than 65 mph towing any trailer, I believe the Mazda will do fine around town but have ruled out taking trips to the mountains with it and the trailer. The sad part is the CX-9 does great in the mountains with no trailer.

  5. #35
    goes to eleven chuyler1's Avatar

    2013 CX9

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    I've been hauling our 2,500lb fiberglass RV for the past week around the northeast with our 2013 AWD CX9. I don't have a WD hitch but I'm going to get one for our next trip. It pulls fine, but requires some effort to keep the transmission cool. Most trucks I've towed with have a tow setting which locks the transmission out of the top gear. In order for me to do that in the CX9 I have to run in manual mode, which means I have to pay attention and downshift when necessary.

    With this load, the transmission locks out the torque converter and lets me cruise at 60-65 mph in 5th gear. I can only use 6th on downhills. For any climb lasting more than a mile the torque converter usually engages and RPMs jump up. This is fine if you're close to cresting the hill but for prolonged climbing i think it is safer to shift it down into 4th where it locks out again and has no trouble climbing any interstate road at 60-65 mph. So I can generally cruise the flats and moderate hills around 2,000-2,250 rpm in 5th and for longer climbs I'm at 3,000 rpm in 4th.

    As for gas mileage, I've been hovering around 12.5 to 12.8 on the trip computer. I'm also tracking things at the pump and will figure out an overall average for our trip. I'm guessing based on past calculations at the pump that I'm really getting 13.5 to 13.8 mpg. Not great...but it could be worse.
    Last edited by chuyler1; 07-02-2014 at 05:29 PM.
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  6. #36
    Registered Member

    Mazda CX9 Grand Touring 2012

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    I can tell you from personal experience with my CX-9 there has been no lack of power if needed on the Hwy.
    Been across the Rocky's, Cascades and the Appalachians with no issues at all.
    Mine held hwy speed going up the mountains with no issues at all, really love the car and the way it handles both towing and not.
    John


    Quote Originally Posted by DDDonkey View Post
    I am glad to see many people pulling a trailer with the CX-9, but some of you are much braver than me. I did put a hitch on my and it has the towing package. I bought a 6'x9' flatbed trailer for my quads and the Mazda. I can tell you I will not pull anything heavier with the CX-9, the trailer loaded can handle 1500lbs and the trailer its self weighs 550lbs. I have had 2 full size quads on there (what it was made for) and the railer was just under 2000lbs total and the Mazda was gutless. I had to manually shift or it would shift too early, and before you say it I drive like an old man and am not a speedster. I don't drive faster than 65 mph towing any trailer, I believe the Mazda will do fine around town but have ruled out taking trips to the mountains with it and the trailer. The sad part is the CX-9 does great in the mountains with no trailer.

  7. #37
    Registered Member

    '10 CX-9 GT/AWD. Blue/black int.

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    What are you pulling with the CX-9??

  8. #38
    goes to eleven chuyler1's Avatar

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    Oh it'll definitely keep up with traffic if you want to. It's just a matter of being in the right gear and taking care of the transmission. I need to get a scangauge so I can watch the tranny temp more closely. I drove from Baltimore MD to Manchester NH on Sunday. Temps averaging in the 80s. I kept it between 65-70 mph (a few episodes of 75+ caused some trailer sway). 90% of the trip I was locked in 5th gear and it did fine.

    At our last campsite a VW Toureg pulled up with a 25' Airstream behind it. The SUV looked tiny in comparison but then I spotted the TDI emblem on the back. Turns out that little f*cker can haul 7,700 lbs. I was jealous for a bit until I priced out the SUV and camper combo. Retail price had to have been $150k+ while our entire combo costs less than a base model Toureg.
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  9. #39
    Registered Member

    Mazda CX9 Grand Touring 2012

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    I move around from Job to Job and State to State.
    So my household and Motorcycle goes with me wherever I go
    tow3.jpgtow 2.jpg
    Quote Originally Posted by Brucie66 View Post
    What are you pulling with the CX-9??

  10. #40
    Registered Member

    Mazda CX9 Grand Touring 2012

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    The toureg is a nice vehicle and with the TDI has a great pulling engine but the cost is so prohibitive for myself to purchase.
    The Wife's Pilot has 4500 lb pulling capacity but she has a AWD and if she did not it would be limited to 3500 lbs.
    We took a look at the toureg a few months back but just could not get over the price tag for the TDI. I liked it but the wife was not happy with losing capacity (8 seats vs 7).
    Something to look at for my travels would be the Scangauge to monitor temps and such.

    Quote Originally Posted by chuyler1 View Post
    Oh it'll definitely keep up with traffic if you want to. It's just a matter of being in the right gear and taking care of the transmission. I need to get a scangauge so I can watch the tranny temp more closely. I drove from Baltimore MD to Manchester NH on Sunday. Temps averaging in the 80s. I kept it between 65-70 mph (a few episodes of 75+ caused some trailer sway). 90% of the trip I was locked in 5th gear and it did fine.

    At our last campsite a VW Toureg pulled up with a 25' Airstream behind it. The SUV looked tiny in comparison but then I spotted the TDI emblem on the back. Turns out that little f*cker can haul 7,700 lbs. I was jealous for a bit until I priced out the SUV and camper combo. Retail price had to have been $150k+ while our entire combo costs less than a base model Toureg.

  11. #41
    TomB

    2007 Mazda CX9 Grand Touring AWD

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    Quote Originally Posted by DDDonkey View Post
    I am glad to see many people pulling a trailer with the CX-9, but some of you are much braver than me. I did put a hitch on my and it has the towing package. I bought a 6'x9' flatbed trailer for my quads and the Mazda. I can tell you I will not pull anything heavier with the CX-9, the trailer loaded can handle 1500lbs and the trailer its self weighs 550lbs. I have had 2 full size quads on there (what it was made for) and the railer was just under 2000lbs total and the Mazda was gutless. I had to manually shift or it would shift too early, and before you say it I drive like an old man and am not a speedster. I don't drive faster than 65 mph towing any trailer, I believe the Mazda will do fine around town but have ruled out taking trips to the mountains with it and the trailer. The sad part is the CX-9 does great in the mountains with no trailer.

  12. #42
    TomB

    2007 Mazda CX9 Grand Touring AWD

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    Towing at elevation definitely sucks the horsepower and performance of a NA engine. We visited Durango, Park City and Lake Tahoe this past summer with CX9 loaded with kids and wife, no trailer though. At ~6000 elevation the performance decrease was noticeable. However we saw quite a few travel and boat trailers and old rvs at Lake Tahoe ~6000ft, Prius with HW pop up, 245hp Honda Pilots with dual axle trailers or boats, old MHs with ~200hp V8s, so high elevation travel all doable with patience. We have seen an easy 70+mph with trailer in tow here in Texas (4-5-6th gear pending wind direction), I've also seen 3rd gear in long I-10 climb west of San Antonio, still maintaining 60mph+. Noting all along 3.5 liter engine versus torquier 3.7liter. Always nice to have more power, but more power usually means bigger vehicle, bigger trailer (would be nice), so no real performance benefit. On a good note 2007 CX 9 AWD will hit 100,000 miles this month with three issues, Rear ac relay ~15$, of and on squeeking front strut over speed bumps and driver side window rubber gasket and wind noise, otherwise tires, gas and brakes including 7500miles towing trailer, looks brand new and love 30$ oil changes, That's great value!

  13. #43
    6 wagon for life voldsom's Avatar

    2014 Mazda CX-9 AWD GT w/ Tech Package

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    Quote Originally Posted by TomB View Post
    ....On a good note 2007 CX 9 AWD will hit 100,000 miles this month with three issues, Rear ac relay ~15$, of and on squeeking front strut over speed bumps and driver side window rubber gasket and wind noise, otherwise tires, gas and brakes including 7500miles towing trailer, looks brand new and love 30$ oil changes, That's great value!
    Great to know that after 7 years, 100k mi, and some towing in it's life the CX-9 is doing great! I just got a 2014 a few weeks back, and of course I immediately found the transmission woe threads on the site after the ink was dry. But my fears have been alleviated talking to more owners and stories like yours are always great to hear All comes down to proper maintenance, I think.


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  14. #44
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    CX9 Luxury 2010 Black

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    We tow a braked trailer with a Bowrider boat 20 foot, CX9 Brakes need replacing with something better, need to feel the bite of confidence. Brakes are not good, possible weak point IMO, only after 4 days of ownership.

    I'll be installing a Trans Cooler and Fan to keep the fluid at temp.

    Cheers

  15. #45
    goes to eleven chuyler1's Avatar

    2013 CX9

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    Quote Originally Posted by SydneyCX9 View Post
    We tow a braked trailer with a Bowrider boat 20 foot, CX9 Brakes need replacing with something better, need to feel the bite of confidence. Brakes are not good, possible weak point IMO, only after 4 days of ownership.

    I'll be installing a Trans Cooler and Fan to keep the fluid at temp.

    Cheers
    You should have done a little more research before buying the CX9. A 20 Bowrider is 3,100 lbs dry weight. That doesn't include gear, gas, and the trailer. You're easily at or possibly over the 3,500 lb capacity of the CX9. If you don't have electronic trailer brakes, it is a recipe for disaster, and likely the reason you feel the brakes are a weak point. I can tell you that hauling 3,000lbs with an electronic brake controller is a breeze. The vehicle stops fine and doesn't get pushed by the trailer. I have my Prodigy P2 controller set to 6.5 with no boost.

    As for transmission cooler, the AWD version of the CX9 comes with a transmission cooler and larger radiator. It doesn't need any additional equipment to stay cool hauling up to 3,500lbs.

    EDIT: Just realized you are in Australia. The capacities might be different there compared to the U.S. I know I would be shopping for a larger vehicle if I were towing a boat of that size state side.
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