2014 Mazda CX-5 2.5L Ride and Review By Larry Nutson
2014 Mazda CX-5 with 184HP 2.5L
A global success made better
By Larry Nutson
Senior Editor, New York Bureau
The Auto Channel
The all-new for 2013 Mazda CX-5 is a global sales success. So much so that Mazda has made production increases three times since its introduction.
The CX-5 is one of the fastest selling vehicles in the U.S. market, moving out of dealer inventory virtually as soon as they arrive.
The CX-5 has received numerous awards including the AUTOBYTEL Crossover of the Year, Motorweek Driver’s Choice Award for Best Small Utility, an IIHS Top Safety Pick, Best Small SUV by Car and Driver, a Consumer Guide Best Buy, and more. Most recently the CX-5 was one of three finalists for the North American Truck/Utility of the Year.
The hills of west Texas just outside Austin provided the perfect mid-winter driving environment to “feel” this new powertrain in the CX-5. The ancient live oaks and the undulating hills of the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve, which was originally established to protect the habitat of migratory birds, gave us the opportunity to run the 2.5L CX-5 through its paces…no snow, no rain, dry roads and temps in the mid-70s did it all.
As a reminder, Mazda’s SKYACTIV suite of technology is an engineering philosophy that encompasses the engine, transmission, suspension, and chassis. My overview on SKYACTIV can be found HERE on TheAutoChannel.com. Noteworthy is that Mazda’s highly-efficient SKYACTIV technology has just been named Green Car Journal's 2013 Green Car Technology Award winner at the Washington Auto Show (WAS).
My original review of the 2013 Mazda CX-5 can be found HERE on TheAutoChannel.com.
CX-5 prices start at $21,195. Our drive through the Texas hills was in a top-of-the-line Grand Touring AWD model with a base price of $28,870. Add a few options and also a Grand Touring Package that not only includes a navigation system but now also features Smart City Brake Support (SCBS) and the total runs up to $31,890 with delivery fee.
Now the SKYACTIV-G 2.5L with its increased horsepower and torque answers that concern. My drive in the Texas hill country with another journalist in the front passenger certainly left us with no feeling of any shortcomings. Acceleration from stop is smooth and quick with no sense that the engine was being overworked. Push the pedal to the floor for overtaking and response is quick and immediate. Mazda employs a kick-down switch to downshift the automatic and enable fuel system change for full throttle acceleration when needed. Highway cruising at 70mph is not at all noisy, enabling easy conversation, and push down the gas pedal and there is plenty of reserve to overtake even at that speed.
It’s often difficult to improve on an already good thing. Mazda has done so with the CX-5. The 2014 models are on sale now.
© Larry Nutson